Wednesday, April 23, 2008

My story - the progression

My Story - the beginning is here...

Where was I?

Oh yes….it progressed….

I went from an occasional day at the casino alone…and going with friends or family occasionally, on holidays and such…to once a week…and eventually daily.

When I could, I’d get to the casino as soon as the family was at work and school and I’d stay until I had to pick up the boys.

They attended after school care every day.
They had a stay-at-home mom and they attended after school care every day.
I told myself (and everyone else) that they LOVED going…so they could play with their friends.
And that’s true…they DID enjoy going…but I don’t think they wanted to stay for several hours…
Every day.
And…I KNOW…that they didn’t enjoy frequently being the last children to be picked up….
Sometimes…late….once after school care was officially OVER.

On those days, they’d be standing outside….two little guys, holding their school bags….with the after school care lady, likely grilling them “where IS your Mommy?”

Then…when their Mommy DID show up…she wasn’t this calm, cool, collected picture of LOVE….she was this frantic frazzled woman….whose husband would be home shortly and no dinner was cooking…breakfast dishes were likely still on the table…maybe there was no groceries at home to cook….she’d have to drag those two tired, hungry, upset little guys to the store to buy something to cook…they’d complain, she’d bitch.

And….she probably didn’t have any CASH on her person to buy those groceries with….what card was OK to use? Did that payment make it yet to the credit card company I wonder?...Am I over the limit?

There was no peace in this home….I didn’t even know it.

* *

Sometimes I didn’t have the whole day to gamble…I’d have an appointment or plans with friends, so I’d go to one of the dozen places near the house to play video poker…but those places didn’t open early in the morning…

I played often enough that most of the employees ‘knew’ me…and would unlock the front door to let me in to play while they were preparing to open.

I was usually late for whatever appointments or plans I had, cuz I couldn’t leave….and sometimes I just didn’t make it at all.

* *

On the weekends…when the family was home..I was always trying to think of SOME way to get out of the house….a run to the grocery or the drug store….or this errand or that…if the boys wanted to take a ride with me I’d make up some excuse…

Then I’d be gone far too long…and lie….

And I’d be stuck at home…trying to think of another reason…another excuse, to leave again.

I was spending so much money….all of our savings….then credit card advances….new credit card offers were always coming in and I’d open up a new account…some of our limits were extremely high.

I maxed out everything.

I went to Vegas a few times….once with a girlfriend – we were there for several days….I slept three hours, I think…ate three meals….only stopping when she’d beg me…she’d get the shakes from not eating…we’d take a break…a short one…then back at the machines.

I was so sick on that plane ride home..exhausted, dehydrated.

We had so much fun!


For a few years Vegas was geared toward families..theme parks, etc….the extended family went…with kids…I was FURIOUS….Vegas was MY time…*I* didn’t want to be doing KID stuff when I was in Vegas!

Everyone else did.
They did the water parks….animal parks….them parks….circus circus…
I was pushing the button pushing the button pushing the button pushing the button.

I could go on and on.
But I won’t.

I didn’t do some big, bad, terrible thing….I didn’t embezzle money (from anyone other than my family and friends)…I didn’t get arrested….I didn’t leave my children alone for hours at a time.

I did tons of little things….tons…I neglected everything and everyone in my life… I abused people who love me....people that I love.

On April 15th (tax day) my husband calls to tell me how much I need to write a check for…

It was a lot of money.
We didn’t have it.

We SHOULD have had it.
We didn’t.

This had happened before..but now….there was no more money.
There was no more credit.

There was nothing more I could do.
I had to fess up.

More of my story here.

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