Intro: Pounding bass note and a stirring fanfare of horns. Welcome to another edition of Things to Think about. Here's Stacy. The horns continue with a keyboard note held.
Relaxing piano music is in the background. Welcome to the Things To Think About Podcast where we use fables and fairy tales to come to deeper truths about our subconscious world. I’m Stacy Casson and today’s story explores the things that keep us up at night. We will dive into this topic in a tale I call, “Unquiet, Unsettled.” And now, get comfortable and relax. Take a Deep Breathe in and exhale. A Deep Breath in, and exhale. A Deep breath in and exhale. And if you'd like, you can slowly...close...your eyes.
Once upon a time, a bear had insomnia. There was so much to do before hibernation, but this bear had much on their mind. The cubs had left to find their own territory and their father had perished during hunting season. This bear wanted a break from it all and had developed a honey habit. Some honey a day keeps the anger away. It had been harder to forage since the spring was hotter than normal and many of the tender shoots they liked had withered under the punishing sun. Everything was off this year. The berries were sweet but there were fewer of them and the apple trees had produced a tiny crop. The insects and fish were abundant but they noticed the fish gave them severe indigestion. Still, they ate even though they did not enjoy them in order to get ready for hibernation. They had become a creature of habit. Eat, rut, repeat. The bear felt stuck.
They did not remember digging the cave. They had settled in for the winter. It was a snug fit. They bemoaned all that honey and the fish had left them bloated and uncomfortable. Their heartbeat had slowed but their mind was racing. Were they going to be able to stay in this forest? Food was getting harder and harder to come by. If it were not for the insects and honey, they might have had to go in search of picnic baskets. The two-legged ones did not when their kind came into the camps. Look at what happened to their last mate. They shuddered then tossed and turned in their den. How were the cubs getting on? Did they want to have more next season? If only they could find a little cave in a hidden grove far away from the other bears. They would lounge and sunbathe and gorge on berries and honey. Oh for a life without struggle.
They were still awake. They could not even go for a walk, because the winter was especially harsh. They needed to conserve their energy. Laying on their left side gave a small measure of relief from the heartburn. They imagined emerging a new independent bear. If the males came sniffing around they would swat them away. Perhaps they could hide in the reeds in the lake. What if they started a log rolling regime? They could get strong enough to fight if they had to. More cubs? That would be another two to four years of showing them how to do everything and making sure they did not get eaten by a hungry male. Then they would have to find a cave big enough for all of them to hibernate. No more. They were going to find some peace. There were plenty of other bears. Let the ones that wanted it deal with keeping their population intact. Were they a selfish bear? If a bear thinks in the woods and nobody knows are they aberrant?
As they tossed and turned, they dreamed. The bear heard about other bears who disappeared; taken by the two-legged ones. The stories used to frighten cubs did not seem that scary to them. There were apparently bears that lived in two-legged prisons. The two-legged ones forbade them to hunt and provided all the food. There was no privacy in the prison and even the cave had a strange window where the other two legs would gawk at the captured bears. Would that be so horrible? It sounded easier than foraging and raising cubs. They had heard of some of the creatures in these places being given strange buckets and flat sheets. They used their paws to create something called art. Apparently, the two legs thought this was incredible. What was wrong with them? They remembered that bear the two-legged ones had brought back. Its eyes were vacant and it had not survived the winter. The bear shuddered again and seriously considered finding a new territory in the spring. Spring was coming. They could feel it in her bones. Why did they pray for the groundhog to see its shadow and grant them a longer season of snow?
With the impact of current uncertainties, everything is getting more difficult to maintain. It is tempting to burrow into caves. When the snow thaws, what will the new world unveil? And now, you can take a deep breath in and exhale. A deep breath in and exhale. Deep breath in, and exhale. And when you’re ready, wiggle your toes, wiggle your fingers, and slowly open your eyes. If you are enjoying this podcast, please subscribe and never miss an episode.
Closing: Closing jazzy keyboard and thrumming bass. Hope you enjoyed today's segment. Tell a friend. See you next time. Music fades.