This bear is very special to me for a number of reasons. I have never posted about this bear before, he hasn’t even been introduced to my family, but I feel that this is the right time to share my story about Richard the Texas Rangers bear.
After my dad passed away in 2008, Billy took me to Build-A-Bear Workshop at the Grapevine Mills Mall so I could build a bear just for me. We were in the store for at least 45 minutes while I looked at everything there was to offer my special bear. It was a very emotional experience for me, and it still brings tears to my eyes as I write and remember this special trip.
This was my very first visit to Build-A-Bear and I had tears in my eyes the moment we walked into the store. I was excited to have the opportunity to create my very own bear, and this was going to be a very very special bear. I was creating a bear in memory of my father so I would have something to hug on when I felt sad or needed to cry. The attendant was very helpful in explaining the entire process to me and then we started to pick out my bear. I picked a light colored bear because it just stood out as the right one for me. We filled him with stuffing to my liking – not too hard and not too soft. I wanted him to keep a good shape, but still be soft and snuggly. The third step was the hardest step of all. The attendant showed me three different hearts to choose from, and explained all about how I had to pick the perfect heart for my bear and give it lots of love before we placed it in my bear. All I could do was cry. My dad died from a heart condition and it was just a very emotional subject for me. I quickly picked out a red heart and placed it inside my bear ready to move on to the next step.
The rest of my trip was more exciting and a little less emotional. I browsed through all the outfit possibilities trying to find the one that best represented my dad. My dad was a die hard sports fan so I knew that was the route to go. They were out of Texas Longhorn t-shirts so I had to look for the next best option. I turned around and saw the perfect outfit for my bear. A Texas Rangers t-shirt, blue jeans, socks and shoes with red and blue stripes, and a red reversible fleece jacket. My dad wore jeans and a sports shirt from one of his favorite teams almost every day, so this was perfect! I loved it!
I named him Richard in honor of my dad, and we left the store very happy with the bear I had created. I spent the next several days hugging and crying over my bear as I mourned the loss of my father. Every time I look at my bear I’m reminded of my dad and it makes me happy.
Now, Richard has been brought out of hiding into the living room to serve as a good luck charm for the Texas Rangers as they play the New York Yankees in the ALCS game series. This is the first time the Rangers have made it this far and I know my dad is still cheering for them! He would be so excited!