I recently decided that an unfortunate-accidental-sleepover-incident involving a raccoon and the fur on my back had a wonderful silver lining: I was able to donate a few tufts of fur from my back that were ripped asunder by an alarmed raccoon to the forest. I left the little balls of hair on the forest floor with the hopes of some fur-needing creature wandering by and happening upon them.
It was a nice feeling. Not only did it distract me from the pain of my back, but it also led me to thinking of different ways I could donate things to the forest and creatures who were in need. In that spirit, I started to leave little things around the forest I no longer had any need for. My claw tips. My left over leaves. Some acorns I found in my cave. One of my rabbit skeletons (an old one I never really licked anymore). A branch I could not eat all of. Some plastic bags that got stuck on my head for a full day (I was happy to get rid of them).
I kept giving and giving, and it felt great. I no longer had the burden of these possessions nagging my thoughts, and, with any luck, some creature who needed these things would find them, get their use out of them as well, and, maybe, pass them on to other creatures.
I started to think about how much of the forest I experienced is a donation from other things, too. The trees lend me their leaves. The sun gives me its light. The rabbits leave behind their skeletons. I borrowed all of these things, and there was no need to keep them in tiny piles in my cave forever like I usually did. They had a greater purpose that could not be fulfilled while they sat in my cave, doing nothing. The forest seemed to thrive off this uplifting cycle of borrowing and lending and donating and accepting. It was a nice realization.
I hope that I am able to give more of what I can give as I keep going throughout the forest. Who knows, maybe one day some creature will collect my bear skeleton and get some kind of use from it. I hope that is not for awhile, but it is a nice thought.
For any questions or comments directed at Bear, feel free to write to him using this email: justasinglebear@