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Saturday, Oct. 10, 2015
The Tooth HurtsPosted Monday, September 17, 2007, at 12:22 PM
Is there possibly a more stressful yet somehow strangely satisfying time for a parent than when a child loses a tooth?
A few days ago, one of our 8-year old son's lower front teeth had become loose, and grew increasingly looser with each passing day.
Over the weekend, we tried nearly everything to get that darn tooth to come out. Brady pulled, twisted, and wiggled. My wife, Amy, and I pulled, twisted and wiggled. But not too hard, because this often resulted in absolute fear on Brady's part, and was sometimes accompanied by screaming and tears. We started this process on Friday, and by Sunday, we still had no results.
Now, being the good father that I am, I offered several times to help my son remove the tooth. But he repeatedly kept going back to his mother, my wife, for advice and comfort. I have no idea why. Apparently, pulling teeth is not a 'Dad' issue.
I offered to go get the hammer and tap on it until it came out, or retrieve the pliers and twist a little until it popped out. I even asked Brady if he wanted me to drop him on his head in hopes of wriggling the tooth free.
He refused all of this advice. This doesn't make me a bad father, trying to help my son through this dilemma, does it?
By the way, I'm only joking about all of my offers to help remove the tooth. Although I did mention a few of these solutions to Brady and Amy as I tried to lessen the tension over the weekend by providing some comic relief. They didn't think they were very funny.
Anyway, by Sunday evening, the tooth was hanging on to my son's gums by a flap of skin, and had twisted completely sideways. The sucker was ready to come out, we just knew it. And after almost a week of emotion, tears and frustration, we were ready for it. Plus, we wanted that thing out then so that it wouldn't fall loose at night while he was asleep, possibly causing him to choke.
Then, by some sort of miracle or chance, it happened. I was relaxing on the couch when Brady ran out of the bathroom (where he and my wife had been concocting a plan to wrestle the tooth out) screaming in joy and delight; "Daddy! Daddy! My tooth came out!" He ran to me jumping up and down, triumphantly shouting, and hugged me while smiling broadly, the gap in his lower teeth quite evident. I hugged him back and Amy and I let out a collective sigh of relief. The experience had obviously taken its toll, as Brady was asleep for the night not 15 minutes later.
The stubborn tooth went under his pillow that night, and Brady was up bright and early the next morning for school, still plainly happy and excited that he had made it through this trying ordeal. I still don't know if I've ever quite seen Brady as comfortable and pleased as he was that morning. And my wife and I were not the only ones who were happy for him, as the gift from the Tooth Fairy left under his pillow would suggest.
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