It's amazing how I can find a way to relate to literally every single persons story on here. In 4 months I haven't come across one post that I didn't find at least a small part of me in. I'm sure others feel the same.
For the newer folks just beginning, or trying to begin your recovery, know that you're not alone. Those deep, dark feelings that you've kept inside while battling this addiciton are the same ones most of us have had. You are not alone. You're among friends if you're here. Please share, when you do you're actually aiding other folks recovery.
Today I counted the days. It's been 139 days since I made a bet. 140 days ago the thought of that was inconceivable. Gambling influenced me so much that it almost always was the first thing I thought about when I woke up, and the last thing I thought about before bed. Whether it was the act of gambling, worrying about money, figuring out schemes to keep my addiction hidden, I felt completely trapped. Until I didn't. Running from this addiction helps no one, it hurts everyone, including those you don't intend to hurt.
My wife asked me how I was doing last week. Not the normal one though. The one that was meant as, "are you having any thoughts of gambling? Are you hanging in there? Do I need to be worried?" Early on she hit me with this question almost daily. Now it's less often...I told her "I'm doing really good, I don't have bad days anymore." I thought about that comment after the fact. I realize I reflect SO much more on my actions/responses now than I ever have. My time isn't wasted (and wasted is an understatement) scheming and worrying. I have time to reflect. As I thought about my response a kind of serenity came over me. I realize that I no longer think of gambling when I wake up. I no longer think of gambling when I go to bed. It's kind of become an afterthought. It doesn't control me. That is an incredible feeling.
I feel really good today and that's an awesome feeling. I've realized my recovery has been very much like a grieving process. I think I'm the acceptance & hope phase. It took a while to get here. I'm sure some of the other emotions will strike from time to time, but today is a good day and tomorrow will be even better.
This time of year can be "slippery" for me. I'm starting to feel vulnerable because of the strong feelings and memories, both joyful and sad, that always come up around the holidays, not to mention the extra stress from the out-of-control consumerism, unrealistic expectations, crowds, traffic, etc all around me as the season ramps up. I'm posting to remind myself to breathe and remember that...
I am feeling sorry for myself tonight. Yes, i went on a bender at the casino and lost our last $200. I am 43 and have no money. I have two kids, who have tons of stuff, nice clothes, don't need for anything. I just hate that it's another Christmas that i don't think I'll bother with a tree as i can't afford it and there is nothing to put under it. My husband has had a trucker license the last...