The Story of the Five Bears – Part II “Teaching Kindness”
As you may recall, once upon a time in the year 2014 there were Five Bears, who lived together in a crazy, multigenerational household, filled with crazy, unconditional love and crazy – sometime uncontrollable commotion and organized chaos. All the Bears called it simply and tenderly “Home, Sweet Home.”
One of them was a small, wee-size boy bear named Wee Bear; and one was a small average-size boy bear named Small Bear, and one was a medium-size mother bear named Mother Bear. One was a medium size grandmother bear affectionately called Grams Bear or just plain “Gramsi” and the other was a great big grandfather bear called Bumpa Bear.
On a warm spring day, Mother Bear proclaimed “today’s children should be taught kindness.” Mother Bear had been reflecting on Mother Teresa Bear, who captured us with her heart of compassion and her words: “Three things in human (and bear life too!) life are important. The first is to be kind. The second is to be kind. The third is to be kind.”
Kindness became the underlying theme of a project of two boy bears named Small Bear and Wee Bear.
It could be seen in the thirteen unique and distinctive clay flower pots positioned all in a row, each brimming with fresh potting soil and containing spring -flowering bulbs, ready to burst with flamboyant color and vitality. Each pot had a sign attached that read, “Know that you are SO special.” The boys put every drop of kindness and love they felt into each pot. This was done with thoughts of a young boy bear named Derek Bear, who died in an accident at the age of nine years – a boy they had never met, but only heard his story. The flowers served as a tribute to a life over too soon. The spring flower bulb garden represented a new beginning and warmth after a cold and brutal winter.
The recipient would see a small card perched in the pot upon a plant spike, with Derek’s picture in his baseball uniform that read: “Changing the world one smile at a time.” It also contained Derek’s Facebook page: Actsofkindnessforderek.
Two young brothers, Small Bear and Wee Bear, were on a mission to spread Derek Bear’s joy and deliver these flowers as a random act of kindness.
“I want to take one to my teacher and the principal,” asserted 10-year old boy bear, named Small Bear in a factual and thoughtful manner.
“Oh yes!” I want to take one to my teacher and the school secretary too,” echoed the youngest brother, Wee Bear.
The list was overfilled with names from “the bear who cuts my hair,” the bear who helped me build my pinewood derby,” the doctor bear who made Grams better again, to my orthodontist, to Baby Evie bear who just got out of the hospital, and to the dental office. Their list was endless. We ran out of flowerpots before we ran out of names!
They proudly approached each recipient with a pride on their face and a big-heartedness in their small voice. It was if their words were inspired from Derek Bear above. The statements and comments flowed so naturally out of their mouths. Sometimes tears could be seen on the recipients face. Sometimes they just left the flowers upon a desk and never said a word, but watched the surprise when people discovered their gift.
“We are doing this as acts of kindness in honor of a boy from Fennimore, WI named Derek who died in an accident last August.” This is how they began each delivery, each taking turns in their opening statement.
“Derek’s life had great meaning. We are spreading Derek’s joy.” With arms extended and flowerpot lifted upward, Small Bear would present their gift tenderly to the recipient
One recipient asked if the boys knew Derek, and wide-eyed and enthusiastic Wee Bear promptly responded: “No, but he is our friend now. We are helping him spread joy.”
Like Derek’s spirit, the flowers live on and bring joy to others.
The flowers brought delight and sweetness to everyone’s day. Any random act of kindness is powerful and meaningful, especially because it is so unexpected. I can think of no better way to spread love in the face of loss. It is a healing statement of love. Love eases some of the unimaginable pain. It validates the significance and specialness of every human being. Love connects us.
It was one of those poignant lessons of the heart. The young boy bears summed the project succinctly.
Small Bear simply stated: “It made me feel really good. It made them feel really good.” “I hope they continue to carry the act of kindness on so it goes on forever and ever and ever!”
Wee Bear pondered with depth. His eyes squinted, his forehead furrowed. He paused and reflected as his face took on a look of someone older than his stated years.
Finally, and with a deep sadness in his eyes, he poignantly professed:
“I only wish I could have met Derek Bear.”
And the Grams Bear heart was filled with joy. She knew that the healthiest hearts takes part in the spirit of giving and kindness.
And the Mother Bear looked accomplished and satisfied with the outcome of their small lesson of the heart. You could hear the Mother Bear softly proclaim:
“Ahhh, this lesson is just right,” she said contently and her heart took all the bliss of parental pride and satisfaction in and “ate it all up.”
All the Five Bears encourage YOU to please TAKE CARE OF YOUR HEART. ♥