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Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Feeling sad

I'm feeling sad tonight. Janey lost a tooth yesterday. It had been loose for a few days---I only happened to notice it because I saw her lip had a little blood on it, and saw a tooth was loose, her first one. She played around with it for a couple days, and last night, when she was right next to me, it must have fallen out and gotten swallowed, as I couldn't find it. She seemed fine last night. I had a few moments then, thinking about the Tooth Fairy. I didn't attempt any Tooth Fairy action---without a tooth, she'd understand it even less than she would otherwise, and to be honest, she wouldn't get it a bit even with the tooth. And she has no idea what money is, and is indifferent about presents, so I just decided to skip it. I was okay with that. But tonight, as I was trying to get her to sleep, she kept saying something I didn't get at first. Finally I realized it was "Tooth!". She grabbed my hand and put it where the tooth had been. Over and over and over and over and over. I knew what she was asking---where the heck is that tooth? Why is there this gap in my mouth? How can something that is part of my body just be gone like that? She kept looking at me with a scared, questioning look. I told her over and over all I could think of that she might understand---"Everyone loses teeth! Mama lost some teeth when she was 6, William lost teeth, Freddy lost teeth, Daddy lost teeth, even kitties lost teeth! A new tooth is already coming! It's okay---don't worry!" But God knows what she understands of that. Very little, I think. All she knows is that something has changed, and she doesn't know why. And that look on her face just about did me in. I can't help her. I can't say the words to make it better, because words don't work with her. I can hold her, and snuggle her, and try to protect her. But there are going to be so many times in her life like this. And some day, I won't be there. And my poor baby girl is going to some day be scared and not have anyone there that can understand her. And that is just almost unbearable.


sara said...

I know how that feels. I can't bear the thought of my daughter without me to protect her. I can comfort myself a little with the thought that wondering why, and being scared about, why things happen, is a part of everyone's experience, even typical children. Yes, they might be more easily soothed by the explanations they are given because they can understand them better, but sometimes the explanation won't help even them. And the more times any kid experience that feeling, the more they will learn to be okay with it, remembering that they have felt it before and the world didn't end. But yeah, our kids seem so dependent on us to help them navigate the world - they know & we know that we, the moms, are the ones who understand them best. It's a heavy thing to carry around.

cv/d said...

Someone else, someone from the family, will rise to the occasion. It will never be the same as you, as mom, but it won't be as though she's completely on her own. I think about things like that myself. Don't be misled; I'm not a mother, but I am the older sister of a TMH girl (age 12). Sometimes I think about what the future will be like, when my parents aren't around. Our mother will be around for a long time (I assume), but my dad's been fighting cancer for awhile, and... well it makes me think about what will happen as the older generation in our family passes on.

I will be there for my sister. And your daughter will have someone there for her too. Another person will do everything they can to calm her down. It won't be the same, but it won't be a lost cause either. Life always goes on.