Every morning I get to wake up my daughter and get her ready for school, but often that's the last time I see her until the next day. The other day, my wife took her out of school to go to the dentist (apparently the entire school became aware of this just after my daughter). Despite her initial boisterous objections, she did quite well at the dentist, and thanks to technology, I was able to share in the experience---my wife sent me an MMS of my daughter showing me her three loose teeth.

My baby. Losing her baby teeth. This. Isn't. Cool.

But she's excited, and she should be. No matter what I may wish, she will keep growing up. Certain things are inevitable.

Most nights I don't come home until about 9:30, well after the little PalKid has gone off to sleep. But she knows that Tuesday nights belong to us. I come home early, and we either go out as a family, or I take her out to a little sushi place down the street. My schedule is regular enough, and she is rigid enough, that when there is a change, she knows it. A week or so ago, I took the morning off to be with her on a snow day. Her cousin slept over, and after making them Daddy Waffles, we suited up and went sledding on the front lawn, with its dangerous 2 degree slope. She couldn't believe I was there to push her on the sled.

Every second with the kiddo is precious, from cuddling on the couch, to clipping her nails while she turns on the drama. So the other night when I went to pick her up at her little friend's house and she begged me to let her sleep over, I wouldn't let go.

"Are you sure you don't want to come home and cuddle?"

"Daddy, I want to sleep over! Pleeeeeease?"

The damned kid is losing her teeth, sleeping over at her friend's house, and generally growing up like a normal kid. I guess I'm going to have to be OK with that. But the house sure was quiet the next morning.


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That is one lucky little kid though :-)

I love it when you talk about your family. It kind of endears me to read everything else. I do believe the first post I read of yours was about your family and I kept coming back for more!

Aiiieee - and your job is to be there on Tuesday nights, come what may, whether she is or not. We're going through something similar ourselves. Next we know, they'll be traveling the world, and we'll still be on call.

Tooth-fairy tip (assuming at least some of the aforementioned teeth are still loose and not lost): Get some body lotion with 'shimmer' in it and rub it onto a dollar bill--the $$ will then look sparkly and special when she discovers it under her pillow. My kids love being able to distinguish their 'tooth fairy dollars' from the other various currency in their piggybanks.

By Jennifer B. Phillips (not verified) on 22 Feb 2010 #permalink

Oh, I'm feeling a little verklempt. MY BABY is 16. Her boyfriend just left our house...Did you hear me? I SAID BOYFRIEND.

Oh what I'd do for loose teeth.

My fifteen year old daughter took the Christmas cash she got from her grandmother and got her hair professionally dyed (she did not want me to do it!). It is quite striking, a reddish brown, with blond tips.

No more missing teeth. She has even finished with braces (though not her older brother, who had to get them put back on!).

Also last week I took her to the local community college to take the Compass test. During her last two years of high school she will be substituting certain classes with those taken at a community college, paid by the state. It is a program called Running Start.

Sigh, I miss the snuggles and hugs. Though she did give me a comfort hug when I killed my laptop by spilling on it (it is now in the shop!).

Last week my husband and I were in a minor auto accident. We're in our 50's. We debated when and how we should tell his parents about it (mine are deceased). If you're honorable about it, you never stop being a parent, and you never stop being a kid (until your parents are gone).

I push down on my daughter's head every day, but she keeps growing. Darn it.

Your daughter may not remember that it was Tuesday nights rather than Wednesday, but she'll remember that she had special time with you.

I was all nostalgic with you until just now: my children are fighting like crazy and shrieking. Am tempted to sell them.
@#4--You are raising the bar on us lame-os. Our tooth fairy was a third stringer--an overweight (barely fit the tutu, wings didn't really work anymore) balding guy with a drinking problem. He could NEVER manage to remember to come when first alerted. Usually took three or four days. Forget about glittery money! ;-)

My three-year-old granddaughter was in the car with her dad the other day and asked if they were going to Target. When he confirmed that as their destination she said, "Thanks, Daddy, I knew I could count on you!" Kids grow up too fast some days and not fast enough others. Just enjoy it all.

Your family stories keep giving me lumps in my throat--doesn't that violate your Hippocratic oath? :) Enjoy the times, PalMD. There will be many many more, but there will never ever be enough.

Incidentally, keep these special moments in mind because they'll help curb your tongue and actions when you're very frustrated and angry with your daughter (probably when she's a teen). Instead of counting to 10, picture these moments you write about. Works better, I think.

By Daniel J. Andrews (not verified) on 24 Feb 2010 #permalink