The Tooth of the Matter

Big day today.


My oldest miss lost her first baby tooth. And I checked my records: it really is her first baby tooth, the very first tooth she ever cut.

I remember when this tooth was a little white line just visible under the skin of her gum. I remember the excitement of watching it grow into a bump and then finally poke a corner through. It made sure it was firmly established before it allowed its partner to come up, and then my girl had that adorable, upside down buck tooth grin for a while before the top front teeth made an appearance.

Now what to do with it? My hoarding instincts whisper to keep it, to keep all of them, for… what, exactly? To have a jar full of teeth to freak everyone out with? Sentimental reasons? I have photos and booties and onesies and locks of hair and hospital wristbands to look back on when I’m feeling nostalgic. Why not add to the collection?

But then again, why add to the collection? Why create more stuff for me to curate? How do I even store or display it? I don’t need these mementos – I have my daughter to trigger all those memories whenever I look at her! Maybe it’s best to let it go now, before it becomes a burden to deal with.

But then again, how to get rid of it? The toilet or bin seem too disrespectful. Maybe plant it under a tree or bush? But then, what if that tree or bush dies (a highly likely scenario given my black thumb when it comes to gardening)? Will that disturb me too much??

It’s all too much. For now I’ll keep it nestled in a container with a ringlet I snipped when she was two. Maybe my head will stop spinning enough to make a decision tomorrow. But then again, maybe it won’t…


10 thoughts on “The Tooth of the Matter

  1. Aww! My mom kept all my baby teeth in a small jar. She used to joke she’d have them gilded and made into a necklace (she didn’t actually do that, my family is weird, but not THAT weird). If you don’t want to throw it away, maybe you could make a kind of memory box for your daughters? You know, a small box with like their booties and their lost teeth and pictures they drew in it? If you have all that stuff already you might as well have it all in one place. Maybe give it to the kids when they move out or something?


    1. That’s the plan. I’m hoping to create some type of time capsule for each of them with booties and their first piece of clothing and photo albums and stuff. It’s just a matter of culling and preserving things correctly so it becomes a treasure to display and enjoy rather than a higgledy-piggledy mouldy old mess.


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