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The Chains Are Broken  

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slowlearner
(@slowlearner)

Hi,

Just another day, took 2 grandsons to school, one had a hand held games computer in his hand playing, happy and constantly updating me on the fantastic score he's achieved on a particular game when the youngest shouts Grandad it's my turn tell him to give it to me.The other one shouts no it'll be your turn in the morning tell him Grandad.

We agree a compromise as i offer the one without a games computer my phone so he too can play a virtual game. Eventually it's time to go into school & the two of them take off towards the lollypop lady as i scream BOYS YOU'VE FORGOTTEN YOUR SCHOOL BAGS & BOOKS but it falls on deaf ears just as my advice DON'T RUN does.

God it's great to be alive as i eventually catch up with them to give them their school bags & books before they enter their classrooms. We kiss. i tell them to have a good day & in the blink of an eye they're gone. The little one's last words are GRANDAD DON'T FORGET IT'S MY TURN FOR THE COMPUTER TOMMOROW.  Trouble & strife yet not a thought of what will win or lose on this particular day.

I've missed so much whilst chained,like a humble obedient servant to the gambling industry. I get home thinking phew that little one could create an argument in an empty house & that cup of tea tastes wonderful as i ponder my earlier journey, playing referee trying to concentrate on driving whilst they argue & exchange insults & tell me how unjust their lives are.

You know what I CAN'T WAIT FOR MORNING TO COME. Life is so good without gambling, just wish i'd tasted it sooner.

We Can Change

Stay Strong

AL

 

 

Quote
Posted : 11th June 2019 11:01 pm
A 9
 A 9
(@alan-135)

What a lovely post AL and so clear to hear the pride in your voice as I read it back , not only pride in your Grandchildren but most importantly the pride being restored to yourself and your life is plain to see . 

We've spent far too long oblivious to what's going on in our lives and shackled to addiction and as the title of your post say's " The chain's are indeed broken "  .

Enjoy your morning my friend , you deserve it :)) . 

ReplyQuote
Posted : 11th June 2019 11:43 pm
gadaveuk
(@gadaveuk)

Hi

Precious time and relationships with people in healthy ways.

How much pain use to hold me back from living life in so many healthy ways.

Please keep going to meetings, you will benefit from it in so many ways.

Love and peace to every one.

Dave L

AKA Dave of Beckenham

ReplyQuote
Posted : 12th June 2019 2:40 am
slowlearner
(@slowlearner)

Hi Dave & A9,

Thanks again for your words of support & kindness. Another school run over & i'm soaking wet. Had to tell the little one off this morning for being horrible to his 7 year old brother & only the eldest one gave me a hug before he went into school. The 5 year old just turned his back on meas i held out my arms lol.

I read your posts before we set off and it's true A9 i do feel a sense of pride when i see them going into school. and you know what i feel proud of myself. This time last year i wasn't contributing at all to our family, financing the next gamble were the only thoughts in my mind. I was so solitary & thoughts of getting children to school, sitting listen to them read a school story book were quite alien to me.

When i logged in my profile said i joined on the 24th of August 2018. Although i haven't gambled there was little interaction with others for the first few months. All i wanted to do was wallow in how much i hated myself & how worthless i was. Who knows maybe punishing ourselves is part of the healing process.

You're so right Dave when you say precious time and relationships in healthy ways. I'm learning everyday & feel despite my past i am a better man ( far from perfect ) but so much better. Thoughts of gambling still come & go but now i'm not totally consumed & controlled by them. They're slowly but surely being replaced by that sense of pride you describe A9. What a difference a few months of abstinence can make.

I was physically drained & mentally quite damaged when i first came here, without any sense of hope & resigned to the fact i was never going to be any good. Now i feel a great joy & sense of pride in all our 7 grandsons. The eldest one's nearly 16 and doing his A levels right now and his teachers are expecting him to do well. In August ( i think it's August ) on results day his mam & dad have asked me if i'd like to come along & see him receive his results. I'm counting the days,just can't wait to share weather it brings him joy or disappointment. All i want from him is to do what i'm learning to do right now BE THE BEST HE CAN.

Sincere Best Wishes Both

AL

 

ReplyQuote
Posted : 12th June 2019 9:56 am
Liveinhope35
(@liveinhope35)

Hi Al

can I just say what a wonderful uplifting post. I can feel the positivity radiating from you, and it truly makes me smile. You have done so amazingly well, and it sounds like you have fantastic  grandkids. Keep doing what you are doing, and I will use you as inspiration 

I feel physically and mentally broken, but reading your post has given me such hope. I hope everyday you feel as happy as this, and one day I can feel as happy as you.

 

ReplyQuote
Posted : 12th June 2019 4:08 pm
bdog
 bdog
(@bdog)

You always make me smile Al.

I’m not glad that I’m on this forum and it would have been much better not to end up here... but here we are, so being here and being made to smile is a great thing.

Thanks 

ReplyQuote
Posted : 12th June 2019 10:49 pm
slowlearner
(@slowlearner)

Hi Liveinhope,

If my story gave you a lift that's great news. I was 63 when i came here for help (64 now ) & more than 40 years of gambling took it's toll on me too. I've just been so blind as far as the things that really matter in life & have to say the fog is slowly clearing and i haven't been this happy in life for years.

I'd like to know your story if you can find the time to tell me one day, but i know you can beat this if you want to. Eventually you will feel better & be happy. You talk about hope & there's always hope even for someone my age. The bottom line is it's never too late to change. My story wasn't a solo effort i've had fantastic support from so many great people on here. I've had ups & downs. highs & lows mood swings where i was tempted to crawl back in a hole & return to the destructive forces that caused so much hurt for me and others. When i got like that it was talking to others who freely gave a helping hand with advice & support that got me through the bad times.

Keep posting, and believe me no matter how bad things are life only gets better when we stop.

Sincere Best Wishes

AL

ReplyQuote
Posted : 13th June 2019 10:11 am
slowlearner
(@slowlearner)

Hi bdog,

Glad i made you smile. Stay strong keep at it & you'll make me smile too.

Kind Regards

AL

ReplyQuote
Posted : 13th June 2019 10:17 am
Petesol
(@petesol)

Wow Al found that very emotional .your living your life and really enjoying it really happy for you im using u as my inspiration cos I want to be there enjoying life do the normal things that we take for granted but seem to neglect cos there not important to us for being a cg ..  im slowly seeing the light and getting stronger in my journey..thanks Al

Pete

ReplyQuote
Posted : 14th June 2019 9:10 pm
K2
 K2
(@k2)

Hi Al,

 

just checking in to see if everything is OK.

I'm sure it is.

Stay strong my friend.

 

K2

ReplyQuote
Posted : 4th July 2019 11:46 am
slowlearner
(@slowlearner)

Hi Ken,

I warn you this is a long one so if you're pushed for time you can read it another time perhaps. The bottom line is i'm still gamble free. So where do i begin ?.

Suppose my anonymity might be compromised but i'm going to tell you anyway. Summer 1971 aged 16 i started working in a large department store, a rather upmarket one in those days. You were taught to call  customers Sir or Madam & even had to sit in a classroom once a week to learn not just how to write a bill properly but even how to string a parcel properly. Young kids that worked there spent more time doing the more menial tasks, such as dusting & washing out display cabinets etc. For a working class kid of 16 who came from a broken home i found it all quite daunting at the time.

Whilst working there i met a wonderful lady on my department who for whatever reason took a shine to me. She'd give me cigarettes, buy my lunch sometimes & always encouraged & praised me for working so hard. Over the years we moved on to different jobs but never lost touch. This wonderful lady was not only like a 2nd mother to me but a wonderful friend. (In fact probably the only friend i had in the world due to my addiction. I pushed the others away ) Over the years i saw this lady go through a divorce, re-marry & enjoy a happy retirement until her 2nd husband died suddenly.

Once a week for years after i'd pick her up & take her for her weekly shopping, visit her and just look out for her in order to show her the same kindness she'd showed that young naive kid back in 1971. Eventually her health deteriorate and she eventually moved south to live with her daughter, who'd also showed me a lot of love & kindness over the years. Once or twice a year her daughter would ask me to pick her & her mother up & bring them back to my hometown. Her daughter would arrange a 2 week stay in a care home ( i think they called it respite ). This would give her daughter a break & i could visit her mother every night after work & at weekends take her out for a nice lunch.

This came to an end 3 years ago as my old friends health got worse & eventually had to go into a care home down south. Two or three times a year i'd drive down to visit her whenever i could. She would often tell me she loved me like a son. ( If only she'd known the real me & my addiction ). Sadly this wonderful lady suffered a stroke last year & spent weeks in hospital before being allowed back to the care home with significant mobility problems. She never got out of bed again.

In February this year i drove down to visit & spend a few hours with her. It was devastating for me to see the effects the stroke had on her, taken her ability to move and sometimes swallow. Despite this she was able to talk & again tell me how she'd always loved me like a son. Sadly on the 13th of April she passed away & my wife and i travelled down for her funeral, or the final goodbye as i think of it. I can't describe the sense of loss i still feel.

Moving on 4 weeks ago to my absolute astonishment i learned my wonderful & dear friend had left me several thousand pounds in her will. This was something i'd never given a thought to or expected, given she has 2 daughters and grandchildren of her own.I cried like a baby when i realised what her final act of kindness towards me involved. I actually begged her daughter to take the money back but she refused insisting her mother had decided years ago what she wanted to do with any wealth she left behind & leaving me something was important to her.

After a couple of weeks i eventually banked the cheque. Days later i looked on my banking app & saw a balance most people would be happy with but if i'm honest i felt sick to the stomach & couldn't wait to transfer it into my wife's bank just as i do with 95% of my income nowadays. What's normally a ten second task of transfering the money seemed to take an age. Because of the amount i was asked numerous security questions & even then was told to telephone the bank to be asked more security questions before they eventually authorised the transactions. 

The sense of relief when that money had left my account, i just can't begin to describe, but for once in my life it was the time i had to look in the mirror realise exactly what i am ( compulsive gambler who has a toxic relationship with money ) & do something right for once in my life. Some may say i should be happy being in a position to be able to pay a large chunk of the debt off that i and my addiction created. All i can think about right now is what if my friend had passed away 12 months earlier. A kind loving generous ladies wealth squandered on exchange & betting markets because that's what i am & what i'm capable of. This addiction's ugly but as a person I'M SO MUCH UGLIER.

Stay Strong

 

AL

ReplyQuote
Posted : 10th July 2019 12:24 pm
gadaveuk
(@gadaveuk)

Hi

I was physically drained & mentally quite damaged when i first came here, without any sense of hope & resigned to the fact i was never going to be any good

For me when I walked in to the recovery program I was emotionally traumatized in a state of emotional trauma, in time I would understand that my addictions and obsessions were a form of self abuse.

The wording was never going to be any good, do you mean you were unhealthy and could see your self being healed.

The addictions and obsessions were just the symptoms.

I needed to understand that I was very unhealthy yet could find healing and emotional resolve if I stuck at it.

In other people I would see and feel myself as I use to be and how I could be if I put time and energy in to my recovery.

How much do we value our self today.

Please keep going to meetings, you will benefit from it in so many ways.

Love and peace to every one.

Dave L

AKA Dave of Beckenham

ReplyQuote
Posted : 10th July 2019 12:48 pm
signalman
(@signalman)

Wow Al...

What a powerful post. 

Lost for words really.

I realise now why I took a shine to you when I first arrived here... That story you told could have been a chapter out of my story.

I'm very sorry to hear about your loss.

In my story I ended up with her cat 😂 had him 6 years now, he's an old boy now and his kidneys are starting to fail and he hates my 2 year old with a passion but i wouldn't have had it any other way, the old girl in my story inspired me and gave me the courage to propose to my wife when I was on the verge of leaving her for her own good, without that lady in my life I would never have had my boy in the first place.

Beautiful post Al. It's great to hear you're ok and thank you for taking time to share something about someone so deep and meaningful to you. 

'taking oneself out of oneself to truly appreciate who and what is around you' - a strong antidote to this gambling problem - I very seldom write or read a post from someone who is not focused on themselves and their dilemmas... Refreshing in that respect. A sure sign of a good recovery.

Sorry again about your loss 😔

ReplyQuote
Posted : 10th July 2019 3:13 pm
K2
 K2
(@k2)
Posted by: alwalm

 

Once a week for years after i'd pick her up & take her for her weekly shopping, visit her and just look out for her in order to show her the same kindness she'd showed that young naive kid back in 1971. Eventually her health deteriorate and she eventually moved south to live with her daughter, who'd also showed me a lot of love & kindness over the years. Once or twice a year her daughter would ask me to pick her & her mother up & bring them back to my hometown. Her daughter would arrange a 2 week stay in a care home ( i think they called it respite ). This would give her daughter a break & i could visit her mother every night after work & at weekends take her out for a nice lunch.

This came to an end 3 years ago as my old friends health got worse & eventually had to go into a care home down south. Two or three times a year i'd drive down to visit her whenever i could. She would often tell me she loved me like a son. ( If only she'd known the real me & my addiction ). Sadly this wonderful lady suffered a stroke last year & spent weeks in hospital before being allowed back to the care home with significant mobility problems. She never got out of bed again.

I. This addiction's ugly but as a person I'M SO MUCH UGLIER.

Stay Strong

 

AL

Sorry for you loss Al, but I'm happy to hear that you are ok and still clean.

Grief brings all sorts of things into our heads, but she didn't die 12 months ago and you didn't squander the money.  Why not put some of the money towards taking the grand kids away ?

Even something like youth hosteling (my parents were still taking our kids when they were in their late 70's).

I've highlighted a few things, as I suspect underneath the gambling over the years, that's the real you.

A decent, generous person, who showed great kindness.

 

 

Be kind to yourself.

 

ReplyQuote
Posted : 10th July 2019 3:18 pm
signalman
(@signalman)
Posted by: K2
Be kind to yourself.

Yes, wise words 👍✌️

ReplyQuote
Posted : 10th July 2019 3:29 pm
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