Friday, 25 March 2011

It's like pulling teeth...

When I was a little girl, as the fourth child out of five, losing teeth was no big deal. My older brothers would try and pull my wobbly teeth out for me. I would spend days with my hand clutched over my mouth.

My Dad was the village 'expert' in teeth pulling. A full mouth of false teeth himself, he would cheerfully yank teeth from the mouths of any of my little school friends that came to play.

Anyone in my class at school with a wobbler would ask to come to tea, so that my Dad could deal with it. They would be served a high tea with a grin from my Mum, and then they would skirt around my Dad. Nervous but excited. Giggling, boys and girls.

Crossword paused, peering over the top of both his newspaper and his specs, he would lean over with a clean white hankie in hand, have a peer in, and before my unsuspecting school friends would know it, they were awarded tooth fairy currency. Slightly bloodied at one end, pearly white enamel.

He was viewed as much of a hero as the tooth fairy herself.

He never managed to extract any of my tiny teeth. I would rather leave them hanging by a thread of a root for days, twisting and wobbling, exposing a little more raw gumminess at a time. Then, alone and stoic, in front of a bathroom mirror, with a tissue in hand, I would take a deep breath and deal with it, proudly, all by myself.

And wait (sometimes for days - my parents the tooth fairy was evidently distracted and busy) for the thrill of the five pence piece that was my reward.

I am not sure I ever believed in the tooth fairy.

But I know a girl that does.

I find I have assumed the role that my Dad initiated. I am inundated at the school gate by excited seven year olds who say "Olivia's Mum, Olivia's Mum, can you get my tooth out please?"

Including, this afternoon, my own lovely Olivia. Gappy. She says she looks "Gruesomely" with an edge of pride. But still so beautiful to me.

The tooth fairy will be on shift, on time, tonight.

Were you a wobbler or a yanker? Did you believe in the tooth fairy?


  1. seraphimspMarch 25, 2011

    Oh I was and still am a wobbler.For some reason wobbly teeth terrify me, and my kids take HUGE pleasure in showing them to me dangling precariously by a thread out of their mouths. Excuse me. I need to lie down just thinking about it.

  2. Amy@New AdventuresMarch 25, 2011

    I was the same as you - letting it work itself out til its only hanging by a thread and then *yoink* out with one clean pull!

  3. Wobbler here too.I did believe in the tooth fairy. I have many happy memories of that with my mum and dad. Now I am not sure if i will perpetuate the tooth fairy with my own kids. With a little boy who struggles to read social cues and understand his world I'm not sure if perpetuating the tooth fairy and santa and the easter bunny only to later tell him that it was all made up will be the right thing for my Batsman. But the jury is still out on that! Oh, and Olivia is gorgeousness personified xx

  4. Egads! That picture just makes me wanna squirm :-) your story reminds me of when me old man decided to tell me to tie a string around a wobbly tooth, the other end around a door handle, and slam the door shut.

    I always used the lognest string possible :-) so it never workd, thank god what a wuss!

    Adelaide and South Australia blog

  5. Karen CharltonMarch 25, 2011

    My brother pulled out my first tooth. He swore he wouldn't pull it out and I believed him, right up until he held the tooth in front of me. After that, I kept the wobbly ones to myself. I still remember luxuriating in a hot bath, playing with my wobbly tooth - gummy and raw and hanging by a thread.
    Say hi to the tooth fairy for me. :)

  6. My biggest pink looks just like your Olivia at the momenb! She's a wobbler. They take forever to come out!!

  7. Ohhhh I am not sure how I read that entire post - but I can tell you my fingers were pulling my lips tight over my teeth and my toes were curled up as far as they could go.

    I never remember wobbly teeth (my own or those of others) bothering me growing up but now they really, really, really do. They make me squirm, cringe & feel just a little bit sick.

    I have no idea how I will cope when my kids get to that age but I can tell you right now there will be NO pulling on my watch!!

  8. Oh man, I was definitely a wobbler! The thought of yanking out teeth scared the absolute crap outta me. And yep, the Tooth Fairy was an absolute hero. $2 was considered a lot of money back in the day, and I loved finding that precious little gold coin next to my bed the next morning. Magic. x

  9. a twister, actually! twist it and twist it and twist it until, oops, you can't untwist it back into place and … YANK! out it came. i suspect the tooth fairy WAS real for me, but i doubt for very long, with 4 big brothers all hanging to be the one to 'break the news'.

    love the look on your little lass's face, btw. xt

  10. Jennie MillerMarch 25, 2011

    How funny, reminded me of our daughter's first encounter with the tooth fairy.

  11. Catherine FleayMarch 25, 2011

    Hey Lucy! Gotta love the gappy look! I think I was a wobbler unless I needed the money quicker!

  12. *Sighs* I love gap toothed smiles.
    I wobbled and wobbled and wobbled...
    I remember one tooth that was just hanging and I sat on the back porch for hours trying to build up the courage to just pull hard enough to free it. I never did, but the hours worth of playing with it paid off and it came out that day.
    I believed in the tooth fairy. The way you believe in sunrises and that the drought will eventually break. Her non-existance broke my heart. :-(
    But I still believe in the other fairies. ;-)

  13. I still believe in the tooth fairy. Which is a problem because she often doesn't come and then I have to deal with it (telling the kids she must have been afraid to enter because the dog was indoors).
    I think I was a yanker.
    My kids are wobblers ...

  14. She's beautiful! I would recommend seeking professional dental help though, before doing anything.

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  15. She looks so cute. I think you should go see a dentist if ever there are tooth problems just to be safe.
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  16. I was always a wobbler when I was young. Honestly I am always disappointed when the tooth finally comes off because I will have nothing to thinker with during my classes. I didn't believe in the tooth fairy because it was really beyond my imagination.

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  17. I was a wobbler too, but now I'm just a regular denture repair fan.

  18. She looks so amazing and cute as well. I hope her teeth becomes ok now.
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  19. In our family we are all yankers. We as kids will have a contest of how brave each one is by pulling out his own tooth when it became loose. It is a kind of bloody game really.

    Ron Receveur

  20. Genes have something to do with the teeth properties. If you think that your family has a brittle teeth then it's important to pay attention with your oral hygiene. Anyway, your daughter had her tooth removed. It's okay. New permanent teeth will replace them eventually. Just make sure to give her the best oral hygiene she needs.

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  21. I agree with the last comment. Genetics plays an important role in the development of either strong or brittle teeth. It is essential for every individual to take care of his teeth especially if he knows that his family has brittle kind of teeth.

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  22. I am definitely a wobbler. The idea of yanking and all that blood terrifies me. Though I would rather pull out my own teeth than have a dentist do that for me.

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  23. My toddle also had a slight panic attack when he felt his front tooth loose and wiggly. Although he cried because it was the first loose tooth, he was a trooper in the end.

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  24. I think it's cool to have a dentist dad or mom. If I were a child of a dentist, I would probably have a good set of teeth. Anyway, children's milk teeth need to be removed so that new and permanent ones will erupt.

  25. Since she's just a kid, I'm sure that those teeth will grow back pretty soon. Thanks.

  26. I sure that the tooth fairy will visit your kid, I also do that with my kids as well. Thanks.

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