Please do not tell me if I am not a bear.

deer bear (2)

As far as I know and for as long as I have been able to know things, I have been a bear. I have molded just about every aspect of my life out of my understanding of my own bearness, so everything about all of me reflects what I think being a bear means.

So I hope I am a bear.

When I really try to think about or feel my bearness, I do not have any doubts that I am what I have always claimed to be: a bear. However, there is a large, resting doubt sitting beneath any of the confidence I have ever been able to muster when it comes to my being a bear. What if, to the rest of the forest’s understanding, I am not a bear? What if my understanding of what a bear is or what a bear is supposed to be is not correct?

I have tried to convince myself that, even if such a line of thinking is not true, it does not matter. If I know I am a bear, then I must be a bear. End of story. Yet, that does little in the way of easing the lingering questions and doubts. They persist, ever gnawing at my identity like I would gnaw a moldy branch I found under some leaves.

If you, or anybody for that matter, know that I am not a bear, please do not tell me. I have given this a lot of thought, and the mere idea of confirming my non-bearness is so incredibly unnerving to me that I truly believe ignorance would be a better course of action.

I do not need to know if I am not a bear. There is so little to gain from that knowledge yet so much to lose. If I stop being a bear, I have no idea how I will begin to understand me or my interactions with everything ever. These issues are already difficult to process even when I feel firmly about being a bear, so the stress and anxiety that would come with having to reconsider all of being me would be far too much, an overload of everythingness.

What would I gain from knowing that I am not a bear, though? Would I not just question the validity of being a different thing just as frequently and with just as much intensity? What if I am something that I do not like or want to be? What if I am a deer across the river or dirt? I would prefer to be dirt, but either way, what would I get out of knowing something like that? What would anyone get knowing something like that?

I would prefer to stay in the dark. I would prefer to keep being who I think I am rather than what I might actually be, even if it means ignoring the latter completely.

I am a bear.

If you would like to try being a bear, why not read some of the bear adventures available on this very site? 

For any questions or comments directed at Bear, feel free to write to him using this email: justasinglebear@gmail.com

You can also now use Tumblr to address questions to Bear. Also, you can find bear photos and such on Bear’s Instagram, and don’t forget to “like” Bear on the book of faces.

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