Willie and the Unbearable Bear Crisis

Willie is out of school on injury leave right now. He has been diagnosed with Knee Effusion, or water on the knee. As near as we can tell, there is something wrong inside his knee. This, however, is a separate incident from the bear crisis.

Once upon a time Willie had four bears, a big bear, a smaller bear, a chef bear and a spotted


chef bearnon sitting bear

pink bear (really, a Cheetah) but any way…


willie bearsWillie started acting out the three bears story and after a while, instead of setting the chef bear aside, the chef bear was tossed into the recycle bin. I rescued the bear but Willie wanted nothing else to do with it. Now he had the papa bear, the baby bear and the mama bear (the spotted Cheetah.) One day I found the baby bear in the recycle bin and I had no idea why until the day of the unbearable bear crisis.

Willie left for school one morning with mama and papa bear in his book bag. willie waitingA major factor of Willie’s Autism is consistency. Order. Willie came home that afternoon as usual and started watching Nickelodeon. It was too late when we realized Willie didn’t have his papa bear. We called the bus number and we were told that another student may have taken the bear home. It was the longest night I can remember in the history of Willie. He fought his sleep medication for hours until sheer exhaustion from his meltdown conquered him.

That next morning Willie stayed home from school and the bus-aide said they wouldn’t see the student with the bear until that afternoon. They promised to drop the bear at our house if they got it back. I bought out the baby bear. Willie got upset all over again. We thought he started saying he wanted his ‘sick’ bear until he explained that baby bear’s legs don’t bend. That was the reason baby bear had ended up in the recycle bin. He wanted his ‘sitting bear’. I started searching stores for a sitting bear. It was a Friday and we couldn’t go another night, even worse an entire weekend without a sitting bear. I started praying. We knew Willie would be fine until bedtime. That was when his routine would hit again. That’s when the bear would become a necessity.

I was out on a bear hunt and calling home at intervals. This was as important to Willie and the rest of us as anything so I never stopped praying. By 5 pm we heard from the bus garage. Willie’s bus had retrieved the bear and dropped it off at the garage. My daughter packed Willie into her Toyota and headed to the garage with Willie in the middle of another meltdown. Willie was kicking the windows of the Toyota. Thank goodness the ride home was much calmer. Willie was reunited with his sitting bear. That night mama and papa bear were in their proper place in time for Willie’s bedtime. Willie was calm and tired. He took his medications and was soon asleep. After that, as far as I was concerned, at least for that night…all was right with the world. willie with bearsThank God.


5 thoughts on “Willie and the Unbearable Bear Crisis

  1. Your love and commitment shine through the words of this post. i hope that now and again you receive the reward you so richly deserve, in the shape of Willie’s smile. sometimes that’s all it takes to change the feel of the day, and to recover strength.


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