I have a travelling companion that I bring with me pretty much wherever I go. It’s a stuffed animal name Doctor Bear! And yes, that name is inspired by Doctor Who.
The origin story
During a big road trip I took in the fall of 2015, I stayed with my mum and sister in Vancouver. I’d also brought along a good friend of mine (Angie). We didn’t have anything planned for that week, but my sister (Rebeckah) announced that she wanted to build a new bear at a Build a Bear Workshop. So of course we drove out to the mall to find the only BABW in the area. After looking through all of the potential teddys, my sister chose a bear with soft, white fur.
Rebeckah didn’t have a bear in mind when we got there, she only knew that she wanted the experience of building a bear. The three of us were looking through all of the bins and joking about which one she should get. Eventually, she chose a simple white bear with short, soft fur. Both Angie and I approved of her choice, so it was on to the next step in the process; stuffing the bear!
If you’ve never been to BABW before, you actually get to stuff the bear yourself. Well, sort of. You get to step on a pedal that turns on a machine that blows stuffing into the bear. A BABW worker holds the bear and directs the stuffing into each part of the bear. The worker asked Rebeckah to test hug the bear to make sure it was stuffed her liking. After Rebeckah approved, she decided to put a scent cartridge in the head of the bear. She had chosen a lovely banana smell. It was great!
Next came the heart ceremony. This is where everything changed. The heart ceremony is where you are given a stuffed heart and are told to rub in on different parts of your body, then fill it with love and a wish. Of course, Rebeckah and I both wanted to do it, so we each took a heart as the BABW guided us through the fun little ritual. We then stuffed both of the hearts into the bear. Then Angie gasped.
She observed that this bear now had two hearts, not dissimilar to a Time Lord from Doctor Who. So naturally, she suggested that the bear be called Doctor Bear! And it stuck. We found a nice little suit for Doctor Bear to wear, and even nabbed a pair of glasses too. We joked about his back story and were generally really jazzed about the whole thing. It was a group effort!
I can’t remember exactly when, but later on, Rebeckah and I decided to clone Doctor Bear. This was because Rebeckah and I would be apart, but we both wanted to take Doctor Bear on adventures. So we made a near exact copy, complete with two hearts. The only difference was in the scent card. I got a strawberry one. That is the only difference between the two of them. Now we both take Doctor Bear on adventures and post pictures to Instagram using #DoctorBearAdventures!
There haven’t been many pics in the past several months, but Doctor Bear is joining me for this weekend trip I’m starting tomorrow. I’m sure at least a few pictures of Doctor Bear will make it onto Instagram. So keep an eye out for that!
There’s more to tell about Doctor Bear, but now you know the origin story.