I can remember the moment like it was yesterday. We were visiting our friends, and Jude was on my lap, happily gumming away on my thumb. Suddenly, I felt the sharpness of his first little tooth, and we rejoiced in this milestone.
Now that baby boy is six-and-a-half, and his adult teeth are coming up fast and furious behind his baby teeth. That first little tooth has been wiggled and twisted, pushed and prodded for what feels like ages. Jude is a bit of a baby when it comes to even the mildest pain (this past summer, when we had to remove some prickles from his foot, he cried, "DON'T CUT MY FOOT OFF!!!" as I approached with...tweezers), so we waited until it was absolutely hanging by a thread.
Tonight, I cajoled him into letting me have a pull. And then there it was in my hand, that tiny little pearl of a tooth. His little freckled face was astounded; he didn't realise what had happened until he looked in the mirror, poked his tongue into the space where his tooth had been, and admired the new grown-up tooth behind it.
The girls were just as excited as he was. We placed the tooth in a little cloth bag, and tucked it carefully under his pillow. I sang them to sleep, as always, but Jude seemed...older somehow, like this new milestone has set him on the path to being a big kid. He reached for my hand as I sang "his song" (I Will, by the Beatles), and I held back a tear.
Tonight I will creep into this room to place this little note under his pillow, written in the tiniest of print:
You lost your first tooth! I will take it with me,
and will turn it into a star. Maybe one day you'll
make a wish on it! Take good care of your new
See you again soon,
Love, the Tooth Fairy
This is a first for me, too, and I'm reminded of how much I love this mothering gig.