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Indeed, listening to war veterans makes one feel small and places things in our lives in perspective when we know we don’t half hear the horrific experiences they carry and never had the support structure we have today.

Yes, it’s so hard leading a double life hiding this secret and having to be ‘normal’, efficient and professional at work, with friends and family. We do have to endure so much more the struggle going on inside and the emotional downward spiral that surfaces in moods and flying off the handle for the least thing. But you’re right we are strong people, warriors and survivors with an Achilles heel.

Thanks for pointing out not to beat myself up as it is counter-productive and doesn’t help. We have to use the tools we have to narrow down the chances of gambling and take steps to our recovery.

My faith in God is still my one and only strength that gets me through and keeps me strong. I have to keep looking up. I always think of how Peter could walk on the water as long as his eyes was on Jesus but when he looked down and around him at the waves and the storm, relying on himself, he sunk.

Pat, yes I do know that song. It has beautiful words. I was fortunate to be brought up in a committed Christian family and know many of the songs and hymns off by heart. When I’ve been really low, the words of some of these golden old hymns came to mind and it has just the words to lift my spirits and speak into my situation.

I was reminded to give praise and sing and it made such a difference. It is very difficult to sing and stay unhappy and low. The verse of scripture is true……’put on the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness.’ Most times we have to decide not beat ourselves up or feel down and make choices to be happy and not give in to our urges. It is a matter of choice and a decision, not following our feelings which will succumb to that demon and will screw up our head.

Stay focused…..look up and ahead and not at the past which you cannot change and will call you back to keep you from moving forward.