And it starts. . . . the end of all the little fantasies of childhood. The girls caught me red-handed in Tooth Fairy mode. Well, sort of pink-handed, I guess. I had managed to put the money under Zoe's pillow and retrieved the tooth and a note she'd left for the Tooth Fairy. I put the tooth in the usual hiding place in my room (inherited from my French grandmother, a figurine of a Chinese man toting two buckets, the teeth live in the buckets!), and sat down on my bed to write the return note -- and out pop two girls from their bedroom!
I tried a dodge that didn't work, and Maya looked at me knowingly and said, "SOME kids in my class say their moms and dads are the Tooth Fairy. . . ." Zoe is sure I took the tooth, but can't figure out why I'd do that before the Tooth Fairy came. . . . (Yes, Zoe's the oldest (almost 10 AND A HALF), but I always knew Maya would pop to it first, just sayin').
So I looked them each in the eye and said, "OK, do you really want to know? Don't ask me if you don't want to know, OK?" Giggling, they each affirmed they really wanted to know and I told them there is no such thing as the Tooth Fairy and I'd been playing Tooth Fairy all along! They thought it was hysterically funny, and I thanked them for letting me play pretend. They were thrilled to know the secret, and giggled about playing the games with their kids once they were grown-ups. Whew! Another childhood milestone successfully reached (I've actually been dreading this, probably more than most adoptive parents dread the birth parent talk or most parents dread the sex talk. Those are EASY compared to saying "I've been lying to you all along!").
Then Maya looked at me and said, "About the Easter Bunny . . ." and I reminded her she should only ask the question if she really wanted to know the answer. . . . And she changed the subject right quick-like! Not quite ready for all the childhood shibboleths to come tumbling down at once (do shibboleths tumble? mixing my metaphors, maybe I mean obelisk?! time for bed!).
P.S. So much for early to bed -- almost as soon as I finished this post, facebook and twitter light up with news of an important announcement, and now almost 3 hours later I'm still digesting the news of Osama bin Laden's death. How about that, the death of the Tooth Fairy and Osama bin Laden the same day. . . .