When I was six-years old, my big brother knocked out one of my front teeth.
SIDE NOTE: He actually knocked out both of them but on separate occasions. We were a very loving family, as you can see.
For this particular tooth, we were playing football in my grandpa's front yard. The same front yard that holds so many memories that my brain doesn't know which one to savor first.
It was almost dusk and the air was cold and frosty. All of the cousins, both big and small, were playing and the competition was fierce. This was Oklahoma, as you know, where football is part of your DNA and crimson and cream are the only colors you wear from September through December.
By some minor miracle, I had the football and as I was running towards the end zone/flower bed, I was tackled from behind and my front tooth hit the ground first.
To tell you the truth, it did not hurt one bit. I was more surprised than anything else. And secretly, I was impressed with my toughness.
To his credit, I could tell my brother was very remorseful. The game came to a halt and everyone got down on their knees to search for the lost tooth in hopes that I could exchange it for a few bucks in the night.
Alas, the tooth was never found but the tooth fairy still visited. (You just have to love a tooth fairy who does pro bono work.) And the game continued on as though nothing had happened. It was football, after all.
**Fast forward to last night.**
Sam and Danya, a.k.a. Treehouse Sanctum, had a show last night. It was in a small room in a basement of an old church that now serves as a multi-purpose music venue. The room was small but the crowd was fully engaged in their two-person performance.
I have become quite familiar with most of their songs and "Candlelight Train" just happens to be one of my favorites. It is a song about childhood, about innocence and about the desire to preserve the beauty of that time in your life.
As I listened to the words, I noticed, for the first time, that my brother mentions that beloved front yard, where fireworks and family reunions were common and the one lost tooth that has yet to be found.
I don't know why I had never heard that line before but it was new to me last night.
It made me smile. And then I giggled. And then I sat in silence, overcome by the sweetness of being mentioned in a song (because hey, every girl wants to be written into a song, even if it is by their brother), but also overwhelmed by the loss of something that I will never get back.
And no, I am not talking about my tooth.
I realized that I would give anything to play another game of football in that front yard.