An autistic boy from Canada, a toddler named Lucas Hoffart, was devastated after he and his mother, Jessica, had gone traveling. What was the problem? A teddy bear, which had been with Lucas from the day he was born, had gone missing, and it just happened to be his safety toy.
Autism is still one of the most misunderstood personality spectrums in the world, due to those afflicted with it often appearing unusual to the majority. People fear what they don’t understand, and autism often reflects that fear. It often gets those with the disorder bullied and attacked because they can’t fit in.
People on the autism spectrum see the world differently from the rest, and often shy away from the public. They tend to focus on very specific things to the point of obsession, much like Lucas and his safety toy, Bear. When the thing that makes them feel safe is taken away, it’s like they lost a piece of themselves.
Bear, the name Lucas Hoffart gave his teddy bear, is his best friend, a comfort for a boy dealing with a confusing world. As Jessica told Today, every time Lucas felt uncomfortable, he would reach for Bear. He even held the toy to help him go to sleep.
“He feeds the bear, he takes the bear to bed, he takes the bear everywhere he goes. He has dinner with teddy and whenever he is walking he holds the bear. When he has meltdowns… he really needs the bear.”
Bear had gone missing when Jessica was late for work on Saturday, October 8. She had been in a rush with Lucas and his teddy bear in the stroller when the autistic boy’s safety toy had fallen out somewhere along the bus trip. When Jessica had gotten home, she realized she couldn’t find Bear anywhere.
Jessica Hoffart had searched the house and even retraced her steps in the effort to find Bear. She’d even searched trash cans. The toy was gone, and Lucas had lost his best friend. She went to the store to buy another one, but Lucas didn’t want the new one. She contacted the manufacturer who made the teddy bear only to discover that they no longer make it.
— Let's Find Teddy (@Letsfindteddy) October 10, 2016
Out of options, Jessica created a Facebook page and a Twitter account to ask the internet to help her find Bear. When she posted pictures of Lucas with his teddy bear, the autistic boy started looking for it, asking for the toy by name, according to City News.
Jessica knew that Bear was like a part of Lucas, and thankfully the social media posts went viral. It wasn’t long before the search gained TV time. That next Tuesday, someone came forward and ended the search. Sandra Morales said she’d been heading to the grocery store with her son when she saw the toy and picked it up with the intention of keeping it.
Sandra had seen the story on the TV news and decided the teddy bear wasn’t hers to keep. She knew Lucas needed it and brought it back to Jessica.
The autistic boy’s reaction to seeing Bear again was incredible, said Jessica.
“He was jumping and skipping with how happy he was. He grabbed the bear and hugged the bear and put the bear near his face. I have no words to tell you how surprised and how happy I am with all the response.”
Lucas and his best friend were reunited, and his mother has the public to thank for this act of kindness toward her autistic boy.
[Featured Image by TZIDO SUN/Shutterstock.com]