We spend much of our lives waiting. As children we wait for Christmas. When we start school, we wait for summer vacation. Later we wait for SAT scores and for responses from colleges to which we’ve applied. Perhaps afterwards we wait for GRE or LSAT results. We wait in line at the supermarket and at the bank, and we wait for the right person to come along.

We also ask others to wait, as in “Hold on a sec,” “Wait, wait, don’t tell me!” and the old standard “Hold your horses,” an expression thought to have originated in 19th century America which often has the implication of advising someone to consider carefully before an undertaking.

At the moment someone very special in our family’s life is waiting: our youngest granddaughter is waiting for her first tooth–or teeth, as four are emerging simultaneously–to appear. Actually, she’s too young to understand what’s happening, so it’s really the adults who are waiting. They’re waiting for her gums to not be so tender, and waiting to see the white buds burst forth, and a few short years from now they’ll wait for them to fall out so they can play Tooth Fairy.

If, in fact, our granddaughter does have a sense of this, that she is on the cusp (or bicuspid) of a momentous occasion, I must say she’s waiting in style.

Ellie Incognito