In late March Iris received for her birthday a basket of goodies. It was sent by her kids and grandkids in Los Angeles. Dominating the basket was a white teddy bear which was instantly named Nana Bear, as Iris is Nana to her grandsons.
Photos went back and forth of Nana Bear watching television, climbing the stairs etc. And of the two teddy bears who comfort her grandsons in L.A.
After a while, this became too much for me. "Where," I complained, "is Papa Bear?"
Not too long after this outburst a package arrived. A brown bear emerged who could be none other than Papa Bear.
Nana Bear and Papa Bear have been living with us for two months and they will stay as long as one of us lives. They are inseparable. They watch the tube together; they eat breakfast together; they sit hugging each other on the couch; sometimes they cuddle on a bench in our hallway welcoming whoever comes out the elevator.
Occasionally, Iris finds them in obscene positions. She blames me and untangles them. Is it my fault if Nana Bear and Papa Bear want to get it on?
There is much love and caring in our home and Nana Bear and Papa Bear add to it. They are Iris and me; or they are our shadows; or they are our twins in the animal kingdom. They are so often in view and so obviously at peace. It is delightful to see them; it is delightful to be them.
Now I am not urging you to buy two teddy bears. I think it has to just happen -- unplanned, unaware, with no expectations.