Blogging 101 ~ “Say Your Name”! New Daily Post Blogging Class Titles & Taglines!

Hello Recovery Friends, Readers & Supporters,

Now this was a Daily Post The Godfather would say, “A blog post class and post I can’t refuse”! Sharing one’s blog name is the very first thing readers and visitors see of your blogs. It says a lot about you up front and center. And yes, I said blogs, as I have two here on WordPress. One is my little side business that thanks to WP has grown! My second is all about my Recovery Journey from addictions, living with Mental Health disorders, and Childhood Trauma and abuse.

And since it is a New Year and all, I decided to give my blogs both a little face lift, including the titles and tagline on both blogs. So I’ll let YOU ALL be the judges if I did a good job with them. I would love any feed back your willing to share.

Lyon Book Promotions of Author, Catherine Lyon: http://anauthorandwriterinprogress.wordpress.com
Recovery Blog: http://CatherineLyonAddictedToDimes.wordpress.com

Look forward to your visit!
Author, Catherine Townsend-Lyon
wp.me/p23sd-Pr2

Live In The Moment! Have A Heart! Life In Recovery Does Expire…..

Hello and Welcome Everyone!,

.Weekly Writing Challenge: Three Ways to Go Gonzo
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*Enjoy Life – It  Has An Expiration Date! Give Your Heart to everyone you don’t want to loss from Addiction 2014*

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TOMORROW IS NOT PROMISED. SO, Cherish  your friends!

 

See, in recovery when we learn to give of ourselves, it just seems to makes our Hearts feel Good!
It also helps us feel good about ourselves as we lose so much of our Self-worth along the way within addiction.

For myself being in recovery from addicted compulsive gambling was not about the money that was won or lost, it was about all the hours wasted I can not get back sitting behind a Slot machine, or a Poker table, and about the person I tuned into within my addiction!…

I’ll never forget the day my life changed forever, and I wrote about in my current book out now. How I first learned about the “Oregon State Lottery” and all the video poker machines. I used to go to a little deli with my best friend on Saturdays for lunch. There were these retired elderly guys that always seemed to be there to on Saturdays. The State Lottery had just introduced video poker machines, and it seemed they were everywhere you went. Like in all the Bars, Taverns, and eatery place’s in our community, and not to forget the expansion of all the Indian Casino’s popping up everywhere too! After eating my lunch, I happened to walk over to the other side of the little deli where the video poker machines were. One of the elderly guys was playing on one of the poker machines.

We got to talking, so I sat down behind the video poker machine next to him. He was winning like crazy. I asked him how much money he put in to win the over $200 he had racked up! He said he only started with $10 to start. So I put $5 in the machine as he showed me how to play the same game he was playing. Before I knew it, I had won almost $80 and I thought, “Wow that was easy money”!! So the guy next to me stood up, pushed his “collect button” and went to the cashier to get his money. He and his buddies were getting ready to leave. But before HE did, he came over to me, leaned over my shoulder and said to me, “make sure when your ahead on this poker machine, you “cash out” and leave with the states money. I’d feel really bad if you “Got Hooked” on these video poker machine.”…

Little did that man know my life that DAY CHANGED forever. I never saw them again in the deli after that day. He never knew what happened to me. That was back in 1996. I became addicted! Then our State Lottery in Oregon introduced, in addition to the Video Poker, Slot Style casino games. So instead of me having to drive 42 miles to the nearest “Indian Casino” to gamble, all I had to do is walk up the street to the little deli, or to the bar across the street, and so on…

There were DOZENS of places to go gamble all around me. So, YES….I became addicted. And again, my life was never the same after that day. But my past I’ve shared here on my blog, and through my book, is another long blog post for another day. All of those machines made it difficult for me to enter, and STAY in recovery for a long time. Many relapses and destruction as I look back. But, I made through!
I made it through because of people who were there to help me when I finally got “Sick and tired of being sick and tired.”… Gambling addiction not only destroyed my life, it almost took my life!

So yes, I try now to help others who are still stuck on that endless “Cycle” of gambling addiction. I’m now there for others who reach out for help, just like those before me had a hand stretched out to mentor, help, and guide me into recovery. That is what “HAVING A HEART” to help others is all about right? When you do enter treatment and recovery, you find very quickly that, “You are no longer alone.”

You only need to take that first step. That step can be Life Changing! That one step could just be the step that will save your LIFE. Was my Recovery Perfect?….LORD NO, but after 2 failed suicide attempts, in and out of gambling treatment programs, GA meetings, and therapy, I finally got it together and never gave in, nor did I give UP! Thanks to my Higher Power, (God)…

This last year my life and heart has been an open book for all the world to read, as my story of Hope, Awareness, give Insight, Learn, and to know that Life In Recovery Is Beautiful, should be cherished, and lived! Because we never know when we will be called home, as life does expire…
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God Bless Friends!
Author Catherine Townsend-Lyon

A Daily Prompt Challenge: Slot Machines Everywhere Makes Me Mad, Mad, Mad!

Daily Prompt: Mad as a Hatter

Tell us about a time when you flew into a rage. What is it that made you so incredibly angry?

*GAMBLING*
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When I seen what todays “Daily Prompt Challenge” was about, I thought WOW, NO WAY am I going to pass this one up! I can give “People” an inside look at HOW HARD it is to stay in recovery from “Addicted Compulsive Gambling”………
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You see, what really makes me MAD, and PISS’S me off more than gambling, is ALL the ways gambling seems to invade our lives. If you really have your eyes open, gambling is in our kids schools, with “Raffles,” and “Casino Night” & “Scratch Ticket Scratch OFF” fundraisers. Then gambling is in our place where we Worship, with many year-long festivals where they have “Bingo,” “Raffles.”……
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Then we go to the grocery store to do our food shopping, and AGAIN, gambling temptation at the check out stands with scratch tickets looking at you as you pay for your items. As you leave, you have the BIG HUGE machines in your face that sells Lottery draw tickets, and a variety of scratch off tickets. And in the STATE of OREGON, where I lived for over 26 years, the state lottery has not ONLY “Video Poker” machines EVERYWHERE!, but now they added “Video Slot Games” onto these video poker machines. They also have these little “Mini Casino” lottery retail stores with up to 6 gambling machines in our bars, taverns, even in all the restaurants!!

“Let me make a “Disclaimer” right about now!  I have NO bad feelings, or ill will towards people who can gamble normally. For the “Fun & Entertainment” value, nor do I think gambling should be Banned.  No, I just want to “Advocate~ Educate~& share Awareness” of how available gambling is, how many areas in our “Daily Living” it is in, and how hard it can be for many of us who are in Recovery from this “Cunning” addiction. Yes, be aware that there are thousands of us out here who can not gamble normally, and TEMPTATION IS EVERYWHERE….

**FROM GAMBLERS ANONYMOUS**

“Isn’t compulsive gambling basically a financial problem or the persons Choice”?

“No, compulsive gambling is an emotional problem. A person in the grip of this illness creates mountains of apparently insolvable problems. Of course, financial problems are created, but they also find themselves facing marital, employment, or legal problems. Compulsive gamblers find friends have been lost and relatives have rejected them. Of the many serious difficulties created, the financial problems seem the easiest to solve. When a compulsive gambler enters Gamblers Anonymous and quits gambling, income is usually increased and there is no longer the financial drain that was caused by gambling, and very shortly, the financial pressures begin to be relieved. Gamblers Anonymous members have found that the best road to financial recovery is through hard work and repayment of our debts. Bankruptcy, borrowing and/or lending of money (bailouts) in Gamblers Anonymous is detrimental to our recovery and should not take place.”

” The most difficult and time consuming problem with which they will be faced is that of bringing about a character change within themselves. Most Gamblers Anonymous members look upon this as their greatest challenge, which should be worked on immediately and continued throughout their lives”…….

Slot_machine : Casino Slot Machine Stock Photo
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DID U KNOW the most resent Stats are, out of the 17+million problem gamblers in just the US, “HALF” this number is now High School & College age young adults? Parents, are you comfortable with this number? And the most “Popular” games are “Texas Hold’em Poker & Blackjack”…….WHY NOT? It seems “Hollywood Movie Producers” seem to think gambling SELLS. They make movies that make gambling look like the thing TO DO.
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“The Cincinnati Kid” (1965).  “The Sting” (1973).  “Maverick” (1994).  “Casino” (1995). Martin Scorsese’s  “Rounders” (1998). John Dahl  “THE COOLER”.  “SWINGERS”.
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Swingers only comes in at #10 because, technically, it is not a gambling movie. However, it does feature one of the greatest and most comical gambling scenes ever caught on film. It also taught me what Double Down meant and made the phrase “Vegas, Baby! VEGAS!” legendary……

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And lets not get started on how the Holidays bring out the “RISK” in people to give “Scratch Tickets” as Christmas gifts, and Stocking stuffers! AND PLEASE, DON’T put scratch tickets in UNDER AGE Kids stockings, your just teaching them that it’s OK TO GAMBLE and Under age as well. SO inappropriate! They maybe a “QUIK FIX” for a fast gift, but not for kids.
SO, ALL of these things ABOUT GAMBLING really MAKES ME MADE!
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I will end my share about, “What Makes Me MAD About “GAMBLING* IS The Gamblers Anonymous “DEFINITION” of what constitutes gambling……..

“GAMBLING , for the compulsive gambler is defined as follows : Any betting or wagering, for self or others, whether for money or not, no matter how slight or insignificant, where the outcome is uncertain or depends upon chance or ‘skill’ constitutes gambling.”
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*THE 20 QUESTION QUIZ~~ARE YOU A PROBLEM GAMBLER? *
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Did you ever lose time from work or school due to gambling?                                         YesNo
Has gambling ever made your home life unhappy? YesNo
Did gambling affect your reputation? YesNo
Have you ever felt remorse after gambling? YesNo
Did you ever gamble to get money with which to pay debts or otherwise solve financial difficulties? YesNo
Did gambling cause a decrease in your ambition or efficiency?                                         YesNo
After losing, did you feel you must return as soon as possible and win back your losses? YesNo
After a win, did you have a strong urge to return and win more? YesNo
Did you often gamble until your last dollar was gone? YesNo
Did you ever borrow to finance your gambling? YesNo
Have you ever sold anything to finance gambling? YesNo
Were you reluctant to use “gambling money” for normal expenditures?                                         YesNo
Did gambling make you careless of the welfare of yourself and your family? YesNo
Did you ever gamble longer than you had planned? YesNo
Have you ever gambled to escape worry or trouble? YesNo
Have you ever committed, or considered committing, an illegal act to finance gambling? YesNo
Did gambling cause difficulty in sleeping? YesNo
Do arguments, disappointments or frustrations create within you an urge to gamble? YesNo
Did you ever have an urge to celebrate any good fortune by a few hours of gambling? YesNo
Have you ever considered self destruction or suicide as a result of your gambling? YesNo

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**IF YOU ANSWER “YES” TO 7 out of 20 Questions,…You’re a “Problem Gambler”**

http://www.GamblersAnonymous.org

Talk to someone now: 1-888-GA-HELPS

Locate a meeting near you
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GOD BLESS ALL,
AUTHOR, CATHERINE TOWNSEND-LYON

Daily Prompt Challenge: I Dared To Help A Friend In Recovery Crisis

*Daring to help someone in Crisis*…..

December 13, 2013

Tell us about the time you rescued someone else (person or animal) from a dangerous situation. What happened? How did you prevail?

Daily Prompt: Daring Do

SOMETIMES IN “LIFE” and in “RECOVERY,” we need to step up and help others who have lost their way in their recovery. Being in semi long-term recovery myself, 7 years on Jan 29th 2014, we learn to be “Bigger then Ourselves,” and “Believe in a Power Greater Then ourselves,” in which we can be of recovery service to others. And it is exactly what I did some years ago for a member/friend, in my “Gamblers Anonymous” & our “Treatment” Groups.

ALWAYS IN RECOVERY...

ALWAYS IN RECOVERY…
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It was a few days before Thanksgiving when I got a call from a good friend of mine who also was in recovery from “Addicted Gambling.” She had a little over a year in recovery. I’d also like to stress the point about the “Holidays” being a hard time for those of us in recovery from ANY type of Addiction,…..my friend called me at work on this day, crying, and was SO upset, and out of control by telling me she had “RELAPSED” a few days prior, and she was at the end of here rope! She had a gun, and was sitting in her car, and was going to shoot herself because she could NOT stop gambling! That her husband found out she had been forging HIS name on his own personal checking account, and had written & cashed checks to the tune of $8,000.00 for cash to gamble with!

While I was on the phone with her, I was texting my gambling councilor at the same time as SOON as I heard my friend USE the word “GUN”! I was texting my councilor letting HER know what was going on, and asked her what I should do? I myself was trying to stay calm, and not freak out myself. WHY?

Because I had attempted suicide myself, about two and 1/2 years ago at the time. My councilor texted me asking me to try to get my friend to tell me where she was, so I tried, but she was so scared I’d tell her husband where she was, she just wouldn’t tell me, so that my councilor could call 911 and get her some Help. The next thing my councilor texted me with, was asking me to try to make a “Deal, or a PLAN” with her. To try to talk her into coming to ME at work, to GET her to AGREE to do this before she harms herself. To meet me before she does ANYTHING FIRST, then I would agree to let her go and do whatever. BUT Of COURSE I wasn’t going to let that Happen!

Now at this point, I was getting scared a little myself, because I’M NOT TRAINED in helping people in CRISIS! And especially one where a person HAS A GUN! As I texted this concern to my councilor, she texted back saying she had 911 & Police on the line, and they would HELP BOTH of us to try to talk my friend down. She wouldn’t come to my work, but I was able to talk her into meeting me at local coffee shop. I told her if she would just give ME AN HOUR of her time to let us talk through all this mess, that I was sure we could figure something. Well, to my surprise, she did agree to meet me.

I texted my councilor that she had agreed to meet me, I gave here the location, BUT  TO Please LET ME GET her inside the coffee shop FIRST, then have the Police come inside and find us, so that I could make sure she doesn’t have the gun on her while we are inside the coffee shop. So, I left work and went to meet her. SHE DID have a gun, I asked her to please put it in the glove box,  she did, and I walked her inside. We sat down in a booth, and about 3 minutes of being there, I see two police officers come in, I raised my hand, and they came over. One sat next to her, and the other stayed standing. She looked at me, and tears came to her eyes as we looked at each other for a full minute, then she nodded her head to me.

I knew she understood. She explained everything to me and the police officers. They were going to take her to the “Addiction/Mental Crisis Hold Center”…  but she asked if I would go with her, me and the police officers agreed, and the 4 of us rode over to the center in a police car. My councilor already had the process going to get her admitted, and have a bed available for her. As she was being processed, I called her husband and told him everything that happened, and what was going on. He did tell me he went to the bank and found out what she had done. He COULD have pressed charges, and it may have been the thing to do, so she would learn a lesson of  “Accountability & take Ownership” for what she had done, but we decided that she had been through enough.

My friend spent 4 days on “Suicide Watch” and was in treatment in the crisis center for 3 weeks. When she was released, we continued going to “Gamblers Anonymous” meetings together, and the same “Treatment Group” as well. Her and her husband went to the bank together and explained to the bank what happened, so they let her make a “Payment Arrangement” to pay back the money she stole from her husband. She had overdrawn his account with all the forged checks. It all did work out. It has been years since this happened. My friend and I talk & texted a couple of times a week. She and her husband are still together, and they have saved enough money, and just built their “DREAM” home in So. Oregon……

I’M just SO HAPPY I happened to pick up that phone call that was made to me at work that day, all those years ago. I was able to help save a “Precious Life” but the rest was all GOD working another *MIRACLE* that day………
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Author, Catherine Townsend-Lyon

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The Train On The Tracks | The Jittery Goat

At The End Of My Last Dime!

Daily Prompt: Sink or Swim

Tell us about a time when you were left on your own, to fend for yourself in an overwhelming situation — on the job, at home, at school. What was the outcome?…..

*A TALE OF TWO WOMEN*~~ *ONE SANK, ONE COULD SWIM*

 

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Once upon a time, there was a woman who was GOOD, than somehow turned into a woman gone very, very BAD. She used to gamble for fun and entertainment until one day, her not knowing, started using gambling as a BAD WAY to cope with old pains and hurt from her past.

From past childhood trauma and abuse, so much verbal abuse, which helped drive here to sink. She sank so far into the slow progressive, cunning disease of “Compulsive Gambling,” that after years of lies, blame, shame, denial, wasted time, and money, she found herself at the end of her rope!

She found herself so far gone, she was found on her knees begging GOD to just let her die. With a mind of pure blackness, numb, and filled with fear, she wanted to DIE….

It seemed the bright lights, bells and whistles of those slot machines had this woman so smitten with winning, so hypnotized that she thought she could WIN every time she played. Then one day, she found herself sitting behind a slot machine for over 9 hours. SHE had won over $3,600, but sadly she was held “Hostage”until every last “Dime”was gambled away. She learned it is called, having LOSS of CONTROL.
She could not pry herself away from this “Evil Friend”called a slot machine. NO matter how hard she tried, she seemed held to this spot for the rest of her lifetime.

That is how she was feeling at times. Not knowing when she crossed that “Fine Line” from just gambling for fun, into the “Dark”world of Addicted Gambling. Until one day this woman found herself  in a cold hospital room, where her wrists had open wounds, stitched, bandaged, hurting, and blacking out, waking up in a “Mental/Addictions” Crisis Center all alone.

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All this was happening because she lost herself somehow into this thing called, “Compulsive Addicted Gambling”…….

When she finally woke up, she found herself on “Mental Hold and on “Suicide”watch, via the hospital. After a few days passed, a woman came to ask her question after question, that it gave her a headache. It had been years since she actually had to “THINK or FEEL” anything at all. She had learned how to zone out, and become numb when she had a disappointment, traumatic event, or when things in life where just to damn hard to cope with!

Not excuses, just insight into the brain & one’s thinking, and choices become skewed. YOU
see, she was supposed to be at the funeral of her best friend that day. That day, she found it to hard to cope with that loss, and had just lost her own mother, and her husband’s nephew too!

After spending the next 2 weeks in treatment, gamblers anonymous meetings, and intense therapy, she found herself released, at home, and in the arms of a”loving husband”who stood by her through it all, as did her GOD.


Today?…….

Today she is a very blessed woman. This woman had been to “HELL & BACK”and pushed herself on days she wanted to just give up, or just stay in bed forever. Slowly the days turned into weeks, weeks to months, and months into years of Recovery. Through therapy, she found that the abuse, sexual & verbal as a little girl was NOT her fault! She also learned many “Skills & Tools”to use to COPE with just about anything LIFE would throw her way!

Yes, today she is a woman of  HOPE, STRENGTH, and PURPOSE. She is on a lifetime mission to help others who may suffer from this cunning addiction of “Compulsive Gambling.” She Advocates to make sure NOT one more person have thoughts of “SUICIDE” as an Only “OPTION” to stop gambling. She helps shatter the *Stigma*around people in recovery from any addiction, and those who suffer from any type of mental & emotional illness and disorders too!

In just 7 short years in recovery, she has written, and published her “Story”
of  her life with, addiction, childhood abuse, dark family secrets, recovery, and so much more. She is sponsoring others in Recovery!
Today she is a Writer, Author, and Recovery Blogger. During her recovery, she found she also was suffering from mental illness and emotional disorders, but that doesn’t slow her down. She proves that no matter how far one can “SINK” into this thing called “LIFE,” Never Give Up! She truly “SWAM” her way back to “LIFE”! Now she shares with others all the “Lessons Learned”along her journey…..

“Hello, my name is Catherine, and I AM a recovering addicted compulsive gambler”………*ONE DAY AT A TIME*

“I Live My LIFE in Recovery, But My *PASSION* is Writing”

 

GOD BLESS,
Author Catherine Townsend-Lyon
https://betfreerecoverynow.wordpress.com