[vc_row][vc_column][vc_custom_heading text=”STORY OF A GAMBLER (CHAPTER 9: HELP)” font_container=”tag:h1|text_align:left” use_theme_fonts=”yes”][vc_column_text]
One morning on my way to the casino, I thought about stopping to grab a quick cup of coffee to hold me over. I really needed a coffee that morning considering I gambled until 5 AM in the morning, and I was on my way back there. I had the jitters.
That means that I could literally feel my hands shaking, my stomach turning thinking about playing on a machine or better yet sitting down at a poker or blackjack table. These jitters didn’t just occur out of the blue either; it happened every time I thought about gambling.
I decided to run in and grab a cup of coffee, and as I was waiting I was looking at the corkboard that happened to be covered in business cards and flyers, and one of the flyers read, GA-Gamblers Anonymous meetings every Tuesday. I contemplated in my head for what seemed like hours but in reality, it was only a minute or two on whether or not I should jot the number down on my phone. I hesitated because if I took the number it meant I was admitting to myself that I was a gambling addict, but if I chose not to take it perhaps I would never get help and this would be my life for the next forty some odd years.
I WROTE DOWN THE NUMBER
My first meeting was the following Tuesday, and it was probably the most nervous I had ever been. I walked into that room sweating, and I felt like vomiting. I got there a bit late only because I almost didn’t show up, I almost backed out but thank god that I didn’t. I sat down in one of the chairs in the back of the room, hoping that nobody would notice me coming in. However; everyone turned around as I sat down on a very squeaky seat that ended up interrupting the counselor who was talking to the group at the podium. He welcomed me and told me that if I was comfortable just listening at the back that would be more than okay. I nodded my head and said thank you, and I listened to him and some of the stories that were told that day. It was both uplifting and frightening at the same time, but I learned a lot about myself, and my addiction. It turned out to be the beginning of my journey to recovery.