June 25, 2001 - I Just Want to be Your Teddy Bear
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"It has long been an axiom of mine that the little things are infinitely the more important."
~ Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
Many of you may know Sharon Bryant, author of today's story. Sharon is the founder of Angels Remembered. I first learned of this wonderful project when I received a little angel card in the mail shortly after my sister died. It said that a stuffed animal had been donated in my sister's memory from my dear friend Jane. I was moved to tears and thrilled with this idea. This story is about where those stuffed animals end up.
"I Just Want To Be Your Teddy Bear"
by Sharon Bryant
I was at Children's Hospital delivering teddy bears. The way this
works is I get a guide who goes into a child's room before I enter. If a parent is present, the guide asks if it is all right for their child
to receive a stuffed animal. When they say yes, then I enter, carrying an armload of animals and I let the child pick out the one they want.
We were at the doorway of a room, when the guide went in ahead. I heard her ask the patient if they would like a stuffed animal. I heard a voice, a male, say "I think I'm too old for a stuffed animal." She said, "If you'd like one, the lady is outside the door with some you can pick from." Finally he said, "I guess it's ok." She came outside his room and nodded at me and whispered, "He's 16 and has cancer." I nodded my head.
When I entered the room, I saw his bed pushed up against the window. He was lying there, his one arm under his head, and I could see the agitation in his face, that there were a million other places he'd rather be than lying in that hospital. I walked over to his bed, introduced myself, then said, "Why don't you pick out an animal?" He looked up at me and said, "I'm 16 years old, don't you think I'm too old for stuffed animals?" I said, "Not really, my daughter was here at Children's the year she was 17-years old and she got one from the hospital."
He said, "Well, I'm a guy, and I think guys are too old at 16 for
I looked at those dark brown eyes, that thick hair of dark brown, and I said, "One of these animals sing." He said, "What?" I repeated, "One of these sing a song." He asked what did it sing. I told him, "Why don't you press some "paws" and find out which one it is and what it sings."
He reached up and pressed a bears paw. Nothing. He reached another paw, still nothing. He reached the third animal, pressed the paw, and the little teddy bear belted out Elvis' song, "Teddy Bear". The bear started moving it's head, and the body bounced back and forth. He looked at me and said, "Hey, COOL bear!" I laughed and said, "Yeah, I think so too."
He asked me, "Can I have that bear?" I said, "You sure can!"
He said, "Boy, wait till my mom gets here and sees this bear." As I went to leave the room, I said, "Now can I have something?" He looked up at me and said, "Sure, what?" I said, "A hug."
He reached up with his arms and wrapped them around my neck, as I did the same to him, and I said, "See, I TOLD you you weren't too OLD for a teddy bear!" The grin I received back will stay on my mind forever.
This is where many of the stuffed animals go. This is one story of many of the lives they touch. And it just so happens, that bear he chose had my brother's name on it. I'd like to think my brother made a boy, 16-years old, with cancer, smile for just a moment and forget the problems life was dealing him. I'd like to know that my brother's memory helped a child.
That is what Angels Remembered is all about. God Bless All of you who have emailed me with support. May I have many many more stories in the future to share with you about a life one stuffed animal touched on my journey.
Sharon Bryant copyright 2001
Sharon founded and runs Angels Rememembered, which is a recipient of the 2TheHeart Make A Difference award. Read the poem "The Little Box" by Sharon about her sweet son at: http://www.2theheart.com/sharonbryant
Send your new 12-13 inch stuffed animals to:
PO Box 208
Green Pond, Alabama 35074
The Letter Box:
I happen to own "Chicken Soup for the Christian Family Soul" and Michael Segal's story is one of my favorites! I was excited to see his name on your story Friday and wanted to take a moment to say what a beautiful story that was! I hope to see more from Michael and hope his book gets published soon - I'd love to read it.
I was so touched by Michael Segal's story Friday. His little Allison has a true Christian heart and I bet he is so proud of her. She is surely one of God's special angels. I went to Michael's web page and was awed by how much he has overcome. His spirit is strong and faithful to have beat such horrible circumstances and remained so full of love and hope. He is a genuine hero to me. Thank you, Michael.
Chicken Soup for the Christian Family soul just came in my mail last monday when I joined Crossings through your web site. I eagerly devoured the whole thing and was surprised to see a familiar name in your 2theheart on Friday. Michael Segal wrote one of the most remarkable stories in the book - what a delight to read another one by him. Please publish more of his work! He is an inspiration!
~Beth & Dennis Briggs
I found a link to this site on another site and WOW! This is an
incredible work of art! Every page is filled with ispiration and beauty. Your stories and poetry are by far the best I have seen and this feels like a bit of Heaven. Thank you for this masterpiece of the heart.
What a wonderful story about sweet Allison. She is a treasure and I thank you for sharing her with us.
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