Wisdom teeth removal (part 2/2): a generous tooth fairy

This is the second part of the story about my younger son’s wisdom teeth removal. You can read part 1 here.

An unexpected gift

We had taken the four removed teeth home with us since they were whole. I scrubbed them clean and then decided to search for a container in which my son could keep them. I went to the pharmacy, described the situation and wanted to buy cylindrical plastic containers which are usually used for ointments. But the pharmacist said she could give me a metallic box for free. It had a pretty picture on the lid and I agreed to take it, feeling very grateful for this gift. My son was happy with this box and placed his wisdom teeth in there.

This was not only a gift for my son. Since the surgery was on my birthday, the fact that the surgery went well and this free metal box were also like birthday gifts for me.

My son made it through the next days with a lot of care, ice packs, pureed food, and sleeping with his head elevated.

A kick in the butt by the tooth fairy

A week after the surgery, the stitches had to get removed. On that day, my son came home later than usual from school. What had happened? The rear tire of his bike had a hole and was flat and therefore he had to walk half of the way home.

So, he took his older brother’s bike to go to the surgeon’s office. The thing is that his brother’s bike is much larger than his own bike. And since my younger son is already pretty tall, he found riding such a large bike way more comfortable than his old bike.

Then he had the stitches removed which was a bit uncomfortable again, but he endured the procedure and was very happy to be able to eat solid food again afterwards.

What a timing of circumstances! Why did the tire go flat exactly on the day when the removal of the stitches was scheduled? That seemed like a hint of the force behind the veil that it was time now to switch to a new bike. A kick in the butt by the tooth fairy.

Back in summer of 2021 when our older son got his new larger bike, we had asked our younger son whether he wanted one, too. But he said no. Back then he was still fine with his old smaller bike which he rode since he was in 5th grade.

So, I said, “You know, even though we never did this tooth fairy custom thing here in our family, I think that some kind of spirit thinks you deserve a gift after what you have gone through. That is why the tire of the bike burst just before you got the stitches out. I think we need to buy you a new large bike soon.” Now, he eagerly agreed.

But getting a new bike was not enough. He also wanted to change his school backpack to a new cool one.

And also his wallet and key pouch.

He felt so grown-up all of a sudden that everything had to be changed. Apparently, he had a generous tooth fairy. (But considering that our public health insurance here in Germany paid for (almost) the entire oral surgery, I won’t complain about money.)

The whole story reminded me of initiation rites which the young men undergo around puberty in some indigenous cultures (for example, as the ones which are vividly described in the mind-blowing, impressive book Of Water and the Spirit by Malidoma Patrice Some). Trying, painful, and scary. But once they made it through, they emerge as grown-ups and there is a party and gifts.

My son just came in and said, “Mommy, I need a new bike helmet, too. My old one ist too small.”


Alright. So, I ordered a new bike helmet.

Now I think I need to go and have a serious chat with the tooth fairy.

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