The lost tooth #haibun

I remember the first tooth you lost. It was Granollers Day, annual fair of the nearest big town. C’était un jour de fête was playing in my head. Too much beer and revelry and sure, I lost a piece of myself that day.

Why do we cling on to childhood? I remember the first tooth I lost: it marked a watershed. My parents had been fighting. I lost a piece of myself that day also. The life of pain intercedes between the life of milk and naps and rainbows.

We think we want our children to stay young forever, but really we don’t. We just want the magic of childhood to stay. The anticipation of a sacred gift delivered whilst sleeping:

Under the pillow
waiting for fairy or mouse*
moon-white of milk tooth

My eldest son lost a tooth yesterday after a one-year gap (pun intended). 

*In Britain, the tooth fairy leaves a coin under the pillow in return for a milk tooth. In continental Europe, this job falls to the ‘tooth mouse.’ I’d be interested to learn what traditions there are in other parts of the world!

20 thoughts on “The lost tooth #haibun

Add yours

  1. In Australia we fall under that of British heritige, so we have a tooth Faerie, and besides I am scared of that little mouse .. !!

  2. Interesting to know. Thanks for sharing.

    I do not know much about it because we do not have a proper name for teeth fall in the childhood. I just remember, we were sincerely aware about growing new teeth. Because they last long.

  3. You pack a lot into this, Ingrid. I think you’re right that we want the magic to remain. I hope the tooth fairy came for your son’s tooth and let him something. 😀

    It’s the tooth fairy here in the U.S.–though I wonder if my grandparents and parents had anything like that. It’s not something I ever thought of to ask. My grandparents were Eastern European Jewish immigrants. But then, I also wonder if the tooth fairy was a wide-spread custom back in the early days of the 20th century. I know the tooth fairy came for my teeth, but I don’t remember the first one I lost, nor the first tooth either of our children lost.

    1. It’s an interesting tradition to research I think! I am pleased I wrote this down otherwise I would probably forget. I forgot about mine until he list his, which jogged my memory!

  4. “We just want the magic of childhood to stay.” So true, so true. As mentioned above, it is the tooth fairy in the US, at least in Ohio where I grew up and Texas where the fairy visited my kids.

  5. oh such a fond memory. The tooth fairy was always fun. Notes were left by the kids to the tooth fairly and any thing from money to gifts were placed unter their pillow in a special little pillow they had. By the 4th kid, they often forgot to come.. we’d say “oh she must be so busy, try again” and we would forget again.🤣. Yay to Benji❣️🤟

  6. I remember the first tooth I lost

    Wow… you must have a very good memory, Ingrid!

    In the USA, there’s a fairy, and the fairy followed me from the USA to Israel 😉


  7. You have an excellent memory. I found a box with one of my children’s teeth in it. The tooth fairy decided to keep them evidently. So tiny! Yes, if only the magic could last…(k)

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Powered by

Up ↑

%d bloggers like this: