Two Wolves – a Message or Revelation to me?

A few years ago a handful of people ruined my joy and self-confidence, but the worst was that they destroyed my sense of belonging. I have tried hard not to let it affect me, but it did. Many years before that, something happened that had my world crash unexpectedly and made me believe I had wasted twenty of the best years of my life. It hurt, and it still does. I told nobody of my search for a way to end my life that would look like an accident but not hurt other people. I could go on and tell you about specific untrue accusations. My pain and inability to fight back caused anxiety, resentment, grieving, sadness, loss of energy and finally depression. On the surface, I kept on showing the world a smiling face and buried myself in work; I was successful, built a new life, but, nobody needed to know what I felt inside. My inner world was dark gray, sometimes black. With the dogs of a friend, I experienced the only truly happy hours. They made me forget… They made me laugh, they accepted and loved me the way I was. I could be me, I could be myself. A blissful feeling just “to be.”

An overwhelming need to be alone overcame me a few weeks ago. I didn’t really know where I was going to go. I did not want to burden my friends with my feelings of anxiety and my dark mood. After approximately thirty minutes of aimlessly driving around and without much thinking, I found myself on the highway. My car took me to a small, pleasant town about twenty or maybe thirty kilometers away. I knew a small bakery where, once upon a time, I had shared the best cheesecake of my life with dear friends. Pleased to see the only table outside available, I had a coffee, and, you guessed it, a piece of their delicious cheesecake. I sat there, watched the world go by and thought of the present reason for my inner turmoil. I felt despondent and lonely but already a bit better than when I first arrived. Since here in Canada nobody would ever ask to sit at the same table, I cleared my dishes and went on my way, making room for the next people. I was wandering up and down the charming streets until I finally felt the need to find a restroom. I knew just the place, a large grocery store with a café and gift shop upstairs. The ladies room was taken, so I waited. My eyes fell onto a large poster next to it. It was here that I read the following:

An old Cherokee is teaching his grandson about life. “A fight is going on inside me,” he said to the boy.

“It is a terrible fight, and it is between two wolves. One is evil – he is anger, envy, sorrow, regret, greed, arrogance, self-pity, guilt, resentment, inferiority, lies, false pride, superiority, and ego.” He continued, “The other is good – he is joy, peace, love, hope, serenity, humility, kindness, benevolence, empathy, generosity, truth, compassion, and faith. The same fight is going on inside you – and inside every other person, too.”


The grandson thought about it for a minute and then asked his grandfather, “Which wolf will win?”

The old Cherokee simply replied, “The one you feed.”

Wow! I did reread it. It was a revelation, a message especially for me. This kind of thing has happened three times before in my life; I was taken to a place, or the people I needed to see. Was my Guardian Angel at work when I most needed him? This story stayed with me ever since I read it, I thought about it every single day. Has it been only three or is it already four weeks? I have thought about it, analyzed it, compared it to my inner demons and realized that I had favored and fed the wrong wolf, for many of the past years.

No more. Not that I had forgotten to feed the other one, but one adverse action or word from people I loved or respected, would push me back into the dark place, and the big bad wolf has been waiting.

I promised myself he won’t be the winner!

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About gmroeder

Author: - there was so much I never talked about and now, that my memoir "We Don't Talk About That" is written I can't stop talking about it. And the reviews I get are awesome; so I think this book needed to be written. Interesting that I receive many e-mails from people who read the book and now tell me their similar stories... Did I open "a can of worms?" I think there are so many people who carry a heavy memory load and they do need to "unload". But interesting enough, even more people want to know MORE of my life and therefore I am working on a sequel.

10 thoughts on “Two Wolves – a Message or Revelation to me?

  1. Hi Giselle, I am sorry to hear you have had such a struggle with life this past while. I have too as you already know. Having a daughter and granddaughter living with us for a year with no sign in sight of them finding a suitable place of their own is not easy. Boy if I was rich I would buy them a house. Having lost my brother last December and now my brother-in-law to a tragic accident is tough. I’m going to the memorial service, which is September 8th in Saskatoon, but only flying in Friday evening, going to the memorial on Saturday and then flying home on Sunday. My sister will have a house full with all of his family but I have a very good long time friend who will pick me up at the airport and we will go to the memorial service together with her husband. They will drive me to the airport on Sunday. I am doing this out of respect for my sister, her kids and his family. It’s going to be a big memorial service as he was a GP in Saskatoon as well as very active in the professional Harley Davidson motorcycle crowd. He had been a pharmacist before getting his medical degree. Only 53 years old and in the prime of his life. Such a waste of a good life but accidents happen and this is what took his life. It wasn’t his fault at all so at least my sister will see some insurance money to help out with raising two kids, 14 and 12 years of age. Life is so tragic sometimes and thank goodness she has her dog Polly, who despite being totally blind is an amazing comfort to them all. Animals are amazing. There was an altercation with some other animal during the night here (I think it was a raccoon) where our cat (who came from Alberta with my daughter), had such a row he lost his lower front teeth. Oh, it was touch and go for a few days but now he’s right back to himself, like nothing ever happened, bossing us around and generally making a nuisance of himself with one thing or another. He sure likes letting us know who’s boss. I think I almost liked him better when he was poorly as he was actually quite docile then and spent most of his time sleeping but he knew that’s what he needed to heal. It really was pathetic seeing him with his sore mouth which made him seem so pitiful. We bought him soft food and I coaxed him to eat by letting him lick little bits off of my finger. Well Gisele, I’m so glad you saw the story of the two wolves. I had seen that one before. We can always be aware of which of those two wolves we feed the most. Our life can be made better if we get a grasp on our self talk and focus on feeding the positive side of our lives but it’s sometimes very difficult, especially when bad things happen and cause us to spiral down into a pit of hopelessness. Be strong my friend. You can do it and you can help yourself to feel better. I have recently taken steps to cut out two toxic people from my life as much as possible without being down right rude about it. I feel better just taking that one step towards helping myself. Take care, Claudette >


  2. Thanks my dear friend, I have missed you at the writers club. Tomorrow we are all at Joan’s Place in Qualicum Beach/Arrowsmith Golf Course. I wonder if you come. I am so sorry to hear about your brother in law. But, as you said, accidents happen, we never know if we come home again when out there…


  3. I can’t remember whether/where I heard or read this oh so wise lesson before in ‘right living’ (right thinking, right feeling, right acting, as buddhism teaches us) , but I did and I thank you for reminding me that we receive from life what we put into it/ thanks again, my friend/ it makes me happy to see you are bouncing back!

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  4. Giselle, my friend – go onto youtube and listen to veteran country singer Tom T Hall’s 1972 wise song “Old Dogs, Children & Watermelon Wine”. This should bring a smile.
    Love, Bob

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  5. I’m so glad to hear you’re on the other side of the dark cloud, Giselle. The saying about the wolves is a very keen observation. Something to remember. Cheers!

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  6. Sorry to hear that you were feeling so low…Glad you are bouncing back…Hang in there Giselle…you can do it…hugs

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  7. They used to say, ‘Count your blessings,’ but it’s tough to see them clearly when you’re feeling so down. I like the story of the two wolves – it’s a great illustration. Good to know it helped and that you’re feeling better. x


    • Most of my life I was there for “others” – taking responsibility and went out of my way to do what was needed. And one day, out of the blue, I was ‘dropped’, rejected, and, to the end of my life, I will never figure out where I did go wrong. I came to the conclusion that it wasn’t me at all, that my problem really is that I did too much and protected others who were the real culprits. You know the saying “the dog will bite the hand who feeds it.” The trouble is, you can’t switch off the love or feelings. And always thinking about it is ‘feeding the wrong wolf’.
      Yes, I love the story about the two wolves too. Great wisdom in it.


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