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The Teddy Bear on the shelf


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The Teddy Bear on the Shelf

There’s an office like any other in the country where people go to work every day. In a private part of that office is a desk, a chair, telephone, family pictures on a wall, and books on a bookshelf. At the far end of the top shelf is a teddy bear. A white stuffed teddy bear, untouched since the day it was bought, a ribbon around its neck with big round eyes and a crooked upturned smile.
Not a full smile but a grin as if something’s missing. There bear looks down on all who enter this room. Visitors to the office have different reactions. Some avoid the office because of the bear, others go in and pretend not to notice. Some go in and look at the bear, their thoughts kept to themselves. There are those who talk of the bear with a hint of sadness and remembrance. Others go in and don’t even notice the bear. But it’s there, it’s always there.
One day a first time visitor to the office asked about the story behind the bear. Do you really want to know, asked the owner? A nod was the response and so he told the story. Many years earlier, the man had taken his son to buy a Valentine’s Day gift for the boy’s mother. They went shopping early because the boy was going to have some minor surgery and
wouldn’t be able to shop around the holiday. The boy selected a card, chocolates and the bear to give his mother for the holiday.
He hugged the bear and knew his mother would love it because her son had picked it out. His father helped him wrap the gifts and they hid them in a closet until Valentine’s Day, to surprise his mother. The boy didn’t survive his supposedly routine surgery and never gave his mother the handpicked gift. The bear stayed wrapped in the closet throughout that year and beyond until the father came upon it while doing some cleaning. He placed it on the shelf in
his office and that’s where it remains to this day. A reminder that time doesn’t heal a broken heart, it just teaches you how to live with it.
Max 1/18/91-2/7/93
 
Thinking of your family today. Hugs and prayers for all.
 


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