I hope it is okay I do not know how to be a perfect bear.

I think it is possible simply being a thing makes you the best possible version of that thing. Frogs are the best at being frogs because they are frogs, and who would know better than they? Trees are the best possible trees because that is who they are and what they know. So I should, then, be the best version of a bear because I am a bear, and if anybody knows the best way to be a bear, it would be me, correct?

I should be a perfect bear by way of just being a bear. But I do not actually feel that way. Where I am able to easily assume the same of others in the forest, I have a hard time assuming so of me. I do not think I am a perfect bear, and I do not think I am the best version of a bear. I am even usually convinced that I do not know how to correctly be a bear.

I am a bear, but I have no idea if I am being a bear the way I am supposed to be a bear.

I suppose that could be subjective, though. Maybe what defines perfect bearness is impossible to truly determine since there might not be one single right way to be a bear. That is okay, but even when I humor this idea I am still so easily taunted by thoughts of what I am supposed to be doing as a bear. So much so that I am even forced to ask myself: what if I am not even a true bear, whatever that might be? How do I even know I am a bear? And if I am truly the keeper of being a bear, and I can determine whether or not my own bearness is acceptable, why do I not feel like I am capable of doing so? Why can I not simply be a bear and let that being be my best way to be?

I have, in the past, wondered if other creatures suffer the same dilemma, but they do not seem to. Perhaps instead of trying to be what I consider being a bear is, I should be and do what other forest creatures are and do to illuminate their own -nessness. Perhaps instead of cultivating bearness, I need to cultivate the confidence squirrels have as they chaotically bounce from tree limb to tree limb. I need to harness the effortlessness exhibited by birds as they dip and dive in the air.

Maybe to be the best possible version of a bear, I just need to stop obsessing over my own bearness and, instead, ease into bearness. Let bearness happen.

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? The newest adventure is all about safety!

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 Facebook.


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