By Dawn Onley
My family and I were riding our bikes in our neighborhood on Saturday. I was way ahead of them and had already made it back to the house, when a few minutes later, my husband, Calvin, came in with news to share.
He tried to be discreet as to not alarm our 4-year-old, DeAngelo. He came upstairs, out of earshot of our son, who was happily downstairs drinking his chocolate milk, and whispered: “Guess what I just saw? A bear!” He said he spotted it at the top of a neighbor’s driveway just down the street from our house, and he decided to play a game with our son. “I told him that I wanted to see if he could pedal faster on his bike, to distract him from noticing the bear,” Calvin explained. It worked. DeAngelo pedaled fast and Calvin rode behind him, turning around to check on the bear to keep an eye on where he was. Just in case.
What he didn’t realize was that our boy also saw the bear. It’s at this time that DeAngelo joins us in conversation, eager to let me know that “we saw a bear!” Calvin and I look at each other and start laughing. Of course. He misses nothing!
Usually loud and eager to point out any wildlife that he sees, like the almost daily sightings of deer or the fox he spotted in our yard a few weeks back, it surprised me how instinctively he knew that he better stay quiet this time and get on home, as to not draw any unwanted attention to himself.
It’s amazing to me how our instincts are almost always spot on. That gut feeling and that little voice inside of our heads may get fine-tuned as we age, but both are alive within us even at a young age.
We would be smart to listen to that voice. It’s there to guide us to make better decisions. We can rehearse our reactions all we want, and this is a good practice, but when the time comes, we are guided by the gift of intuition. We’d be wise to listen.
As I learned on Saturday, it may help you get past a black bear who shows up out of the blue.