From “Don’t Feed the Wolf” at http://www.dontfeedthewolf.com – an old Sioux Legend . . .
One winter’s evening whilst gathered round a blazing camp fire, an old Sioux Indian chief told his grandson about the inner struggle that goes on inside people.
“You see” said the old man, “this inner struggle is like two wolves fighting each other. One is evil, full of anger, envy, jealousy, sorrow, regret, greed, arrogance, self-pity, guilt, resentment, inferiority, lies, deceit, false pride, superiority, and ego”.
“The other one,” he continued, poking the fire with a stick so that the fire crackled, sending the flames clawing at the night sky, “is good, full of joy, peace, love, hope, serenity, humility, kindness, benevolence, empathy, generosity, truth, compassion and faith”.
For a few minutes his grandson pondered his grandfather’s words and then asked, “So which wolf wins, grandfather?”
“Well”, said the wise old chief, his lined face breaking into a wry smile, “The one you feed!”
I worry about this; am I feeding bad wolves – or good ones? Do I even know which ones are bad or good? Am I to pursue the rabbits down their fox holes – feeding them, encouraging them to come out and play with me – or burying them alive? Burying my ‘alternate personalities’ with their ways; their pain . . . my ‘past’ (and I put that into quotation marks because it’s “their” past in more ways than ‘mine’ ever was . . . or was it? If we are all of the same . . . )
Should I try to break the habit of using “we” all the time?
Should I try to ‘suppress’ those alternative personalities while (at the same time) – trying to preserve the ‘good’ qualities of them? Can I? I can’t seem to ‘lose’ one without losing the qualities that go with it – and those ‘qualities’ are so much of ‘me’ inside.
Can I shut up the voices in my head? I think not . . . doesn’t everybody hold debates in their head? Feel ‘out of control’ most of the time – like someone else is running the show . . . you’re just holding the reins and holding on . . . for dear life sometimes.
What all will I “lose” if I do? Assuming I can. Can I shut them up? Put them away? Bury them for once and all . . .
I recall I once did . . . but (laughing a bit here; and a little bit bitterly as well) – it took an alternate personality to do that – destroying all my feelings in the process . . .
Do I have any choice in the matter? (shaking my head right there; in doubt.) Do I want to ‘get rid of them’? Do I want to destroy what I – and we – have brought about? Would I lose . . . more than I can possibly gain?
Would I once again hate (with a passion, dears, a passion) – my inner child; extending that hatred down onto Matthew (my precious ‘teen’, no matter how ‘disturbed’ he is . . . sometimes I think he is a sick on, yeah, right on, truly sick indeed . . .)??
What do I need these parts for? (I know, I know . . . gently whispering . . . we know what we were for . . .)
I remember seeking that emotional bliss of no feeling … almost succeeded in there (meaning Matthew and me) . . .
but failed after a number of years. About a dozen.
And so I’m having to ask myself once again:
Who is the bad wolf here?
Who is the one that needs fed?
Can I ‘get rid of’ Matthew – without getting rid of a large part of my being? (so much of what I am is ‘his’, and ‘his’ alone) . . . I should be able to do that thing – shouldn’t I?
After all, I am of one mind . . . you’d think I could turn off all of the others . . .
But I can’t.
Seems to me it’s always been this way: struggling with some kind of mixed emotions; twin baggage; dueling emotions . . .
I remember clearly the other day thinking, and it suddenly occurred to me:
Even as a child I used to go: “That’s OURS!” when someone was stealing our stuff or something. “Ours”. As in a plurality of beings. And I was only eight years old . . . even down to five at the time . . .
They used to sit me in a corner at school – this was in first grade, happened during the very first session – for talking. And then I would get into trouble again (how can a kid get into trouble again, sitting with his nose in the corner? you ask?) I did not have imaginary friends – I needed none – for I was ‘friends’ within myself; making ‘myself’ friends . . . I guess, in ‘myself’ to play with. So “we’d” talk to ourself . . .
And bBy talking to himself, which he did, were we feeding a “Bad Wolf” then? On and on and on sometimes . . . until the teacher would put us in the hallway . . . where we continue to talk to ourselves even then . . . mumbling and playing with ourself; our two hands “free” to talk to one another; making up games…
That’s one of the fun things about being DID: playing games with yourself.
I wonder how many games “they” have played on me.
And I worry: could I be ‘feeding myself’ by even acknowledging that they are there? Shouldn’t I be turning a blind ‘ear’ to these things, this “sides” and “parts” inside of me that have such strong emotions; emotions I don’t like and things? Am I turning a blind eye to myself? Would “I” disappear as well . . . blended into some conglomeration missing things?
I don’t know, but I’m wary of feeding ‘the bad wolf’ – wary of feeding wolves at all. After all; I’m getting the suspicion I’ve done so so often . . . and yet have not done enough at all.
I cannot thrust away hurt children anymore – even if they’re only in my head . . . (feed the bad wolf) . . . and yet to starve them yet again . . . no, my friend, I think not (sadly shaking my head.) Been there, done that, got the scars to show it . . . don’t wanna go there again.
It seems the choice is simple: embracing ‘madness’ or not . . . but when you take a look at it: madness is all I’ve got.