Lex is excited. She's got a loose tooth-just about ready to come out. For some reason, losing your first tooth is a rite of passage for six-year olds (at least for our six year old). It's her sole focus throughout the day; she spends every available waking moment pushing and yanking at the poor tooth.
Which is appalling to me. I hate loose teeth. I cannot bear seeing a tooth pulled. I think it's because of this startlingly vivid recurring nightmare I have where I lose all of my teeth overnight. I've woken crying before, the dream was so real.
Someone asked Lex last night what she was going to do with her tooth once it fell out.
"I'm going to put it under my pillow," she said as if this was the most obvious thing in the world (it is, actually; I'm not sure why they asked her). "Then the tooth fairy will come and give me money!"
It surprised me. I wrote at Christmas time that I thought she was past believing in Santa and the Easter gopher and the Tooth Fairy. Maybe I was wrong.
"Oh. The tooth fairy?" someone asked. "C'mon! There's no Tooth Fairy Lex!"
The look on her face warned of an impending storm.
"Yes. There. Is." she replied, daring any of us to contradict her.
We were quiet for a moment. Then someone asked what the tooth fairly looked like.
I piped in.
"I've seen her," I said. "She's about 5'8"; weighs-Oh, about 280; she's got a deviated septum that causes her to breathe through her mouth, and this nasty skin condition."
There were no takers. Lex thought about the question for a moment.
"Well, I've never seen her," she began, "but I IMAGINE that she's small-about this tall" (she held her hands about three inches apart), "and she has wings and flys around in a little purple outfit."
I've got to admit, if there WERE a tooth fairy, that's probably what she'd look like.
Some dissenter was still intent on proving Lex wrong.
"Ah! If she's that small, what does she do with all the teeth she collects? How does she carry them around?"
"She DOESN'T," Lex said, a little exasperated now. "She waves her wand, and TURNS THE TOOTH INTO MONEY!"
And I'm reminded: for those who believe, no amount of evidence is enough to destroy their faith. For those of us who don't, no amount of explanation is enough to cause us to believe.