Thursday, 30 September 2010

Talk to the bears

These five friends live in the basket on my bedroom floor. They are quite comfy as they sit on one of the cot blankets I have from when my sons were babies.

They have been in my life since I was born, well at least Essel Teddy has, who is the small bear given to me the day I was born. The only other one with a name outside of Teddy, Rabbit and Penguin is my beloved Smokey Joe.

Smokey Joe is a little grey cat who used to have ears and fur and even a squeak. And everywhere I went she came too! All photographs of me up to the age of about 6 she is clutched in my arms. She, along with a later addition called Jells are to come with me when I go on my final journey, so I'm not lonely.

Cause I'm never lonely when I have a friend to talk to. And sometimes if there aren't any human ones around and Miss Trix isn't listening then my old bears will always listen. They are collectively and individually extremely good at hugging me when I'm upset and crying.Although the ones in the photograph are so fragile they have all retired form active care. So the bears that sit by my bed are the ones that do the work nowadays

And a few years back when I lived in a place with no heating and my husband had walked out on me all those lovely bears all cuddled around me in bed to get me warm enough to go to sleep at night.And to listen to my broken heart.

When I travel there are two little bears who fit into the palm of my hand who have looked after me on more than one occasion when I've been isolated and stuck at an airport say. Even if I can't hold them cause I'm supposed to be a grown up(!) then I'll open my bag just to have a look at them and they'll send me some of their bear strength to help me hold it together.

Cause the thing I've learnt over the years is it's easy to do things as long as you have support. And the life I lead is one where the things are more often than not done on my own. So having a friend, however small is vital.

It all goes back to when we were tiny and Mummy or Daddy would tuck us in our cots and beds and pop a friend down the bed next to us to help keep us safe whilst they went downstairs for the evening.

I suggest to my clients that they all need bears ( or rabbits, cats,any fluffy toy as long as it has an understanding face) Cause when I'm trying to get them to learn to deal with their feelings in a healthier way than keeping them in and getting depressed, they need support when they let go of the bad stuff.

If I had my way there would be no more anti-depressants. People would be prescribed punch bags and bears. Cause learning to let go of rage by beating hell out of a punch bag is wonderfully liberating. And having a friend who will listen endlessly to our sorrow without getting bored, or commenting, and being there to give a hug and mop up the tears is what everyone needs. And the only thing I know that will do all those tasks without question is a friendly bear. Cause friends and family only have so much tolerance to our repeated stories. Our real pets wander off, but a bear sticks around for as long as he is held.

So what do you use in the dark of the night to listen to your pain?


Zan said...

(yes got you, thanks)

I so miss my punch bag. I beat the shite out of it during the time I had to attend court so very often.
And oh, I became stronger than my sister's husband and for some reason he did not like that... ;)
Now I'm going to walk around the house inspecting where I can put a hook up in the ceiling... :D


Paula said...

Lacking a punch bag I knead the bread dough very well. Truly well. Never had a bear as a child. Last year I bought myself one, and it is the best what I ever have done for myself!

karen said...

I also have a teddy which was given to me when I was born. He is old and scruffy and worn out, but ever faithful! I remember one of the first blog posts I ever read of yours, which was about teddy bears and soldiers...

Twiglet said...

Wipso (my sister) and I believe in the power of the bears!! I know it sounds unlikely but they really do help to give you strength to cope. She makes tiny ones with a little poem too. They fit in your pocket so you can just pop your hand in, give them a squeeze and get a whole load of strength when you need it most!! My friend deals with teenagers with problems and has given some of the most rugged youngsters one of Wipso's self esteem bears and you would think she was giving them gold! All down to the power of the bears!!( A little advert here - check out our blog shop if you want to know more) x Jo

Merry ME said...

I love my bears. I think I've been ignoring them. I must go give/get a hug. Thanks for the reminder.

A punching bag. I need one!

Wipso said...

As Twiglet said in her comment we strongly believe in the power of the bears and know all too well what magic my little perform. I have now made over 2000 and they are spread out all over the world working their magic...everything from raising self esteem, to giving comfort in hospital, and many more :-)
A x

cheshire wife said...

You are right. There are too many anti-depressants prescribed. It is the easy way out (of the doctor's surgery).

I have a little bear that keeps me company. My childhood bear was generously given to a childrens' home by me, when I was about eight - thinking that I was all grown up!

Mel said...

I talk to Mr. Stuffy Bear.

Thinkin' you already knew that about me.....

Now I'm gonna go investigate the pocket bears. (yeah, yeah....g'head and laugh! LOL)

Pam said...

Oh Byrdie, I am so appreciative of this post! It is such a dear post, and makes you more huggable than you already are!
My punching bag is the bathroom cleaning agents and scourer, or a basket of ironing at record speed. The pain can't even go there. All I know is that your advice is excellent.
In desperation I've been known to hug the dressmaker dummy (yeah, yeah, laugh) - no face or arms, but so stoic!! Feels a bit ridiculous like a marmot motherless monkey experiment but whatever floats your boat or peels your banana I say!! A few quick pats to that stoic dummy,then I can get on with my day, though we'd look a bit strange in the airport as a "we can do this" team!!!! Yeah, I have a partner, but they don't always understand emotional woman stuff.
For the big time sobs,and fat ploppy tears,for me,Angels.Every time.
We just can't manage this crazy life and planet on our own, no matter how much we try.Bears too. NEVER underestimate the power of the bear.Healing takes all forms.
Love your posts,honesty, advice and outlook on things Mandy, so much.xxxxx

Marilyn said...

I love it that these bears of yours and you have history together, that you still have them. I had much loved bear from my childhood but my husband threw him away when shifting house! he said that it was so old and worn that he would buy me a new one - how can you replace a bear that knows you from the start? My children gave me a bear to cuddle each time I felt sad just before one left for Canada and the other to Germany knowing that it would be years before they were home again but each time I looked at it I thought of them and cried!

TALON said...

Awww, lovely post, Mandy! There's comfort in the items that have travelled our lives with us. And I hear you on the yelling it out - which is why I love tae kwon do - I can get all the pent-up frustrations out and exercising body and mind at the same time :)

SY said...

I don't really have a silent listener.. buy my ex he just sat there... I talked at him

nitebyrd said...

This post made me cry.

I have many bears but it's usually my dogs that give me comfort in the long, dark nights.

The Unknowngnome said...

I don't have a teddy bear or a punching bag :-( but I do know of a rose quartz heart that holds the embodiments of bears.

Thank you for stopping by and introducing yourself. I do hope you'll return now and then as I plan to do so here.

Angela said...

I had a hedgehog called Micki which was not so cuddly, but I loved her, too. Yes, I think all children need a best friend of that kind, and everyone should understand that in some ways we can never grow up. And why should we? But I also like that punching ball idea!

diney said...

That was so sweet - I love it that you still have your childhood with you in the form of your special cuddlies. I have my Panda, all threadbare but still smelling of my own childhood.

I tend to sing LOUDLY when i need a release - it always helps!

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