Category Archives: Bear Stories

He Passed!

February 15, 2009

kickboard.JPEG 3+ years, sometimes driving up to an hour from his Montessori school.

2 sets of uniforms. 12 tournaments. 8 color belts. 5 color headbands.

Hours of practice, and telling him to practice.

Then: 3 forms without weapons, a form with a weapon, 2 sparring matches. Break a board with a punch. Break a board with a kick.


Finally, the man says - "and to the rank of decided black belt..."

And the tears start.

(That's Bear. Behind him is the board he'd broken with a punch. Just about to kick the board on the left and then swing his arms over his head when he realized he'd done it. Just before the entire TKD school exploded in cheers and hugs.)

Tags: Tae Kwan Do, Karate, Black Belt, Test, Childhood, Parent, Hope, Dream, Success,
Posted on February 15, 2009 at 12:50 PM and filed under: Bear Stories
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Orange Hair

January 19, 2009

"Racism isn't born, folks, it's taught. I have a two-year-old son. You know what he hates? Naps! End of list."

- Denis Leary

"We are the rainbow people of God! We are unstoppable! Nobody can stop us on our march to victory! No one, no guns, nothing! Nothing will stop us, for we are moving to freedom! We are moving to freedom and nobody can stop us! For God is on our side!"

- The Most Rev. Desmond Tutu

Every year, I sit down with Bear and listen to the "I Have a Dream" speech by the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. This afternoon, as we watched it together, I couldn't help but start crying. Especially at the part when he said "...I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character."

"Isn't it exciting that Mr. Obama is being sworn is as President tomorrow?" I asked my son, sniffling, after the speech was over.

He didn't answer for a long moment. Then he nodded. "Mr. Obama has a good idea how to fix things. And that's why he was elected, right?"

"Right," I answered, even though my 8 year old was being rhetorical.

"I think Dr. King wanted for people to elect the good people for the jobs, no matter what they looked like. Sometimes, people ask me where I come from because I have orange hair and you and daddy don't. But I don't want you to have orange hair. I like your hair the way it is," my son informed me. "I don't want Mr. Obama to have orange hair, either. I want him to do good things for America. I think that was what Dr. King was saying."

"Oh," and maybe I was crying again.

"It's OK, Mommy," Bear patted my shoulder, after a while. "I get it."

"Yeah, Bear," I agreed. "I think you do."

Tags: Obama, King, President, Homeschool, Racism, Motherhood, Hope, Life
Posted on January 19, 2009 at 10:42 PM and filed under: Bear Stories
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Then he kicked him in the head

January 17, 2009

Just before he turned 8, Bear started contact sparring in tournaments.

Martial Arts is all new to me - it's only through Bear's interest that I'm learning about it. And I just don't think I can explain what it was like that first time to watch some big massive Frankenchild come at my son with the intent to punch the living crap out of him.

CD grabbed my hand, I'm pretty sure to hold me back from ripping off the other kid's head and drop kicking it.

Has it gotten any better since? Oh, hell, No.

Continue reading "Then he kicked him in the head"
Tags: Parenting, Karate, TKD, Competition, Mom,
Posted on January 17, 2009 at 09:05 PM and filed under: Bear Stories
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Golden Slumbers

October 03, 2007

Last night, Bear woke up around midnight and decided to go out to the kitchen.

"Bear," I said, following him. "What you doing?"

"Um, sleeping, and then I got hungry," he told me.

He was wearing his footie pajamas, the ones with his name embroidered on them. Looking tousled and adorable and not quite....awake.

"Sweetie, are you awake or are you sleepwalking?" Hey, it seemed reasonable to ask.

"Mommy," he sighed, looking down at where his toes wriggled under the fleece. "Do sleeping people want cereal?"

"Depends, what kind of cereal?"

He thought a moment. "Hamburger?"

"Yes, sleeping people want Hamburger cereal. Awake people want Apple Jacks or Cheerios."

He nodded, sagely. "OK, I'm asleep. Will you carry me back to bed?" Reaching for me.

So I picked him up, his arms wrapped around my neck, the heavy warm weight of him in my hands. And put him back to bed. Pulled up his Knights and Armor comforter. Made sure his stuffed animals were all safely stacked in their places. And kissed him goodnight, again.

essexelizabeth200.jpg"Mommy," he murmured as I left the room.

"Yes, Bear?"

"If you were still a kid, then we could have a sleepover. And go to the park tomorrow."

When I was a kid, I had princess nightgowns the twirled around my knees when I danced. I had a curtains my mom made that matched my comforter. I had my special blankie that made me feel safe. And the boys I played with liked Cops and Robbers and always made me the Robber.

I turned to answer, not sure actually what to say, and saw that he'd already closed his eyes. His breathing steadier, and steadier.

And my heart broke with love.

Tags: Parenting, motherhood, love, dreams, sleep
Posted on October 03, 2007 at 03:58 PM and filed under: Bear Stories
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Phone Calls You Don't Want to Get

September 17, 2004

So... it was a dark and stormy night- errr, morning. OK, it was actually bright and cool. Work with me here.

I was in my office working, door shut. CD was at his computer. He was about to head out for the day so our babysitter of 3+ years, Elia, was over and taking care of Bear.

CD's cell phone rang. It was Elia. On HER cell phone.

CD: "Hello??"
Elia: "Hello, CD? Could you come open the door please?"
CD: "Where are you?"
Elia: "Outside on the front steps."

CD found this news fascinating because Bear, well Bear was INSIDE the house watching cartoons.

Turns out? Bear was pissed off that Elia has come to watch him because he'd wanted Daddy to stay home. So while he and Elia had been playing outside, he'd waited until Elia was just out of range and then raced into the house and, yes, LOCKED.THE.DEADBOLT after himself.

The one that can NOT be opened from the outside.

Close your eyes and just imagine the Armageddon that ensued once CD had put together the scenario in his mind. Yelling? Yup. Steam from ears? You betcha. Stream of consciousness lecturing that would do an Oxford scholar proud? Aye, man! Preschooler over Daddy's shoulder into his room and into the corner for the world's most incredible time-out? Oh yeah, you know it.

But punishment just upped the decibel level. Once he was freed from the corner, the unrepentant Bear lay on his bed - rejecting Elia's attempts to talk to him and throwing a force-10 tantrum. He was kicking the wall and crying and gnashing and wailing "I don't LIKE you and I don't LIKE Daddy!!".

Oh, it was drama to beat the band here at CorporateMommy Central, my friend.

I ejected myself from the office to see if I could help.

In the den, I found CD. He was apeshit.

He stood in the middle of the room with his hands outstretched in supplication and his mouth opening and closing like a fish.

"What?" I asked.

"It's just... it's just... I thought we had YEARS before he started locking his babysitter out of the house. "

He's a flipping prodigy, I tell you.

Continue reading "Phone Calls You Don't Want to Get"
Tags: Child, Humor, Parenting, memory, babysitter, history
Posted on September 17, 2004 at 07:56 PM and filed under: Bear Stories
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Child vs. Firefighter

July 26, 2004

A couple of weekends ago, Bear and I went to a festival held in a local park. It looked interesting. There was an event where rubber ducks were pushed down a creek via the full blast of a fire hose.

No, I am not making this up.

The firefighters took aim from the center of a bridge and let 'er rip on the whistle. Ducks found themselves jet-propelled to the end of the creek. Yeah, I've got no clue on the point of this, other than the obvious phallic nature of the fire hose. (Oh, is that just me? Sorry.)

It also provided full seconds of joy to dozens of children. Afterwards, my Bear raced over to help the firefighters stomp the water out of the hose and roll it up.

Bear: Why are we doing this?

FireFighter: To get the water out.

B: Why?

FF: So we can roll it in a coil and carry it back to the truck

B: Where's the truck?

FF: Over there, see? That's my captain right beside it

B: What's your captain do?

FF: He gives the orders

B: Like Commander Waters and the Rescue Heroes?

FF: Yes. We have a Commander, too

B: Why aren't you wearing your hat?

FF: Because there's no fire. We wear those when there is a fire

B: Did you lose your hat?

FF: No. It's in the truck

B: Are you sure?

FF: Yes.

B: Do you want me to go check?

FF: No.

B: I could go check. I'm going to be a police officer.

FF: That's great.

B: What do you want to be?

FF: I AM a fire fighter.

B: You could be a police officer if you go to school.

FF: I already went to school. Hey, kid, where's your mom?

B: Right there. Where's yours?

Final Score: Bear 1, Firefighter 0.

Continue reading "Child vs. Firefighter"
Tags: Life, Parenting, Family, Love, Children, Humor, Funny, Kids, Firefighter,
Posted on July 26, 2004 at 04:15 PM and filed under: Bear Stories
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