Neither of my daughters look all that much like me. However, I have evidence that the eldest shares at least some of my genes.
Last year, the dentist was concerned that her front baby teeth had yet to fall out. The ensuing X-rays showed that her permanent teeth were unable to push out the baby teeth because they were being blocked by extra growths – or toothlets – in her gums. My wife thought this was the strangest thing she’d ever heard, until I told her, “Oh yeah, I had those too!” Of all the traits she could have inherited from me, I didn’t suspect extra teeth would be one of them.
On December 30th, 1987 (Yes, I remember the exact date), I had surgery to remove the toothlets. That was when I first learned that I don’t deal well with anesthesia, as I threw up in the recovery room while my mother read me a story from MAD Magazine. Oddly enough, that was the last time I threw up until July 1996 when I again succumbed to anesthesia after having my wisdom teeth removed.
Last December, the Cutlet underwent a similar procedure, and had her baby teeth as well as the toothlets removed. Fortunately, she did not inherit my extreme nausea from anesthesia. She was pretty much fine by the next day.
We assumed it would only be a matter of time until her permanent teeth took their place in her mouth. But it’s been over a year, and the teeth are just now starting to come in. I’ve grown so used to her having a large gap at the front of her smile, I don’t think I’ll recognize her with teeth.
Because it was such a special procedure, the Tooth Fairy gave the Cutlet an extra-special reward that night. (I think we gave her a whopping $10!) You’d think that would have made her happy, but instead, she broke into tears the next morning because she didn’t actually want the Fairy to take away her teeth.
She’s had no issues with the Fairy taking her teeth before or since, but for some reason, she really wanted to hold onto those particular teeth. We figured this would pass in time, but when the Tooth Fairy came a couple of months ago, the Cutlet wrote her a letter asking for the teeth back, and she’s mentioned it a few times since then.
I’ve tried to explain that after the Tooth Fairy takes the teeth back to heaven (that’s what she does with them, right?), we’re not sure if she can get them back. We’ve also repeatedly asked her exactly why she wants the teeth back, and what she would do with them, and she has never really given us a solid answer. With all the other random crap we have cluttering up our house, we really don’t need a couple of random teeth lying around.
I think I’m going to have one of my co-workers write her a letter from the Tooth Fairy explaining that it’s very difficult to get teeth back once they’re taken away. Hopefully, she’ll be okay with this. If not, I suppose she could always just add them to her list to Santa. If she’s happy with just a couple of teeth waiting for her under the Christmas tree, that’s going to be much cheaper for us!