Our last dentist appointment did not go well. The staff at Wenatchee Pediatric Dentistry was great, of course, and the kids love it there. But the report on 2-year-old Vivian’s tiny teeth was grim: Starting immediately, no more pacifiers. Her two front teeth jut out like the grill of an old steam train and it’s past time we throw out the binkies, the dentist told us, before we do permanent damage to my beautiful girl’s smile.
Got it, I said. I’m on it. But it was the week before Christmas — quite possibly the worst week of the year to stay up into the wee hours every night with a toddler in pacifier withdrawals. So I put off the inevitable. Until tonight. Tonight the Binky Fairy comes to our house.
The Binky Fairy is just the latest in the long series of lies I tell my children. Santa knows when you hit your sister. That’s not chocolate in my mouth. And now, when you are a big girl, a magical fairy takes all of your binkies and delivers them to sad babies who really need them. In their place, she leaves a gift. I’m not sure where I first heard about the fairy, and I know there are a lot of other ways we could handle this.
My friend John cut holes in his son’s pacifiers so the boy became frustrated and threw them away himself.
My friend Andrea read her children a funny little book that seemed to help with the transition.
My own parents just tossed all of mine away one day. Sorry, kid. You’re done.
But in this house, we’re trying the Binky Fairy. Before bedtime tonight, Vivian will help me place all of her binkies in a basket on the front porch. Then, when she wakes, she will find a small stuffed animal and maybe a new toothbrush in the basket. I have been prepping her for this for a few days. She knows the drill. Now when I mention the Binky Fairy, she screams in terror. Not the ideal reaction, but I kind of get it. Hopefully she’ll come around.
Wish me luck tonight. I’ll let you know how it goes. Parents, how did you handle the end of the pacifier days? I’d love your advice!
(That’s Vivian in the photo, totally unaware that her beloved binky’s days are numbered.)