The afternoon sky was as gloomy as many of the thoughts I’d been entertaining in the last six months. I was once again on my way home from the casino having lost way too much money in slot machines – a mirror of the day before and hundreds of days before that. Like usual, I hadn’t kept my promise of sticking to a budget. Not only had I surpassed it, I had lost over $1,500.00 in just a few hours. My head was pounding, and I couldn’t stop crying. I was so sick and tired of feeling guilty, ashamed and of profusely hating myself. I also didn’t like the thoughts that kept showing up in my mind – that maybe the only way out of my severe addiction was to end my life.
DESPERATE FOR HELP
As tears rolled down my cheek, I shouted out, “Why are you refusing to help me God? I’ve asked for help every day for months now and nothing has changed. I just can’t go on like this!” After turning the corner, I noticed a big semi heading my way in the opposite lane. As I watched the distance between us shrinking, I had an idea. If I swerved the steering wheel at just the right time, the semi would hit me head on and my troubles would all be over.
No more waking up in a sweat and feeling like crap. No more berating myself for being so weak. No more feeling depressed or like an idiot for not being able to adhere to a budget or staying away from slot machines for good. No more lying to my husband and family about where I spend most of my time. But most of all, no more living with constant anxiety and overwhelming guilt for having lost tens of thousands of dollars in slot machines – money I could never get back!
THE STRANGE HOLD
Holding on tightly to the steering wheel, I patiently waited to make my move. Within moments I yelled ‘Here goes!’… but something happened that I will never understand. When I tried to turn the steering wheel to the left, it didn’t budge, not even an inch. It was as if it had locked itself in place and nothing could move it. Then, everything around me got blurry and before I knew it, I was parked on the side of the road shaking uncontrollably. It took some time to come out of the daze I was in and only then did I realize the seriousness of what I had attempted to do.
I’m not sure how long I stayed parked but after my legs settled down somewhat, I put my car in drive and slowly made my way home. I was still crying when I got there so I was happy my husband hadn’t made it back from town yet. Late that evening I did what I’d been doing for several years on most nights. I went to my living room, lit up a candle, took out my pen and began journaling with whom I had come to know as God and my angel Sandra.
YOU ARE NEVER ALONE
I’d always enjoyed our time together because once I connect with my divine guidance, my surroundings quickly fill with calming energy and the presence I feel near me is always patient, non-judgmental and ever so loving. I had been communicating with the spirit world in this way for so long that it only took a couple minutes for our two-way conversation to begin.
My first sentence was, “Okay God, as you well know, I’m in big trouble. I seriously thought of ending my life today because I really don’t know what else to do. I’ve gone for private and group counselling, attended support groups and spent years researching gambling machines. Nothing I’ve done has helped in ending my addiction. As a matter of fact, I am more addicted today than I was six months ago. I simply can’t go on like this anymore so please, please, help me before it’s too late.”
A LIFE-ALTERING MESSAGE
Within seconds I was transcribing the information coming through my thoughts, “The choice has and always will be yours but know that when you die, by your own hand or otherwise, you bring you with you.”
I immediately wrote back, “What do you mean, I bring me with me? The reason I want to end my life is because I detest who I’ve become. I’m this weak, stupid and pathetic person who keeps repeating the same destructive behavior day after day. I no longer recognize the person I see in the mirror. It’s like something’s taken over my being and destroying everything in my life, including my finances and marriage. I can’t handle any more stress, or anxiety, or guilt. For months I’ve asked, or more like begged you for help, sometimes four or five times a day and you either don’t hear me or don’t care. I don’t understand why you’ve helped me with so many things in the past and keep ignoring my pleas when I need your help the most?”
After reaching for yet another tissue to wipe my tears, I began to write again but the information was coming so fast that I had a tough time keeping up.
“When you die, you leave your physical body behind and return to the spirit world, but your soul-awakening process continues. You bring with you your memories, what you learnt through your experiences, or what you call ‘lessons learnt’, and your qualities, including those you think are negative. As I mentioned earlier, you bring you with you. You continue choosing journeys until you become fully aware of all that you are as one part of God. Your present journey is an important part of your soul-awakening process.
I AM LOVED NO MATTER WHAT I DO
Just as I thought I was finished writing, more insights came. Because of the true essence of your being, you have the same qualities as God. The only way to truly know you have these qualities is to experience each one, hence the purpose for choosing journeys, both on Earth and in the spirit world. You are eternally and unconditionally loved no matter what you do or don’t do or how long it takes you to reach full awareness.
Had you ended your life today, you would have been greeted with only love and acceptance and without judgement. You would then have been offered divine guidance and once accepted, you would have been guided in your new journey in the same way that you are at this very moment.
You would have eventually come to realize that whatever needed to be worked out on Earth was now being worked out in the spirit world. You would have also come to know that the opportunity to expand your awareness through an experience is always yours to accept or reject.
THE PURPOSE OF A PHYSICAL EXPERIENCE
My fingers were getting sore because I was writing so quickly. I asked my guidance to take a short break, which they did. Five minutes later, I was transcribing again. “While still in the spirit world, you knew that a journey on Earth could expedite your soul-awakening process because of the many unique opportunities available on this planet. For instance, there are many opportunities to discover some of your God-like qualities within an experience as an addict.
You stated earlier that you are weak, but have you not had to be strong to survive this long with such a severe addiction? What about the tenacity you’ve maintained while researching the true nature of the machines that addicted you and then writing a book about your discoveries? Are you not more compassionate and patient with people struggling with addictions now that you’ve experienced your own? Strength, tenacity, compassion and patience are all God-like qualities that you now know you have because you’ve experienced each one while addicted.
You discovered other God-like qualities, such as sincerity, trust, creativity, empathy and kindness through your experiences as a mother, inventor and artist and you will come to discover many more if you so choose to do so. The more experiences you create, the more opportunities there are to keep expanding your awareness about the magnificent and powerful being that you are.”
THE END OF MY SUICIDAL THOUGHTS
I’ve never had suicidal thoughts since the conversation I had with my divine guidance that night. The insights I received not only dramatically shifted the way I perceived suicide and addictions, it gave meaning and purpose to my experiences in a way that nothing of this world could have. It hasn’t always been easy to accept there’s a divine purpose for all events and people in my life, especially the difficult ones, but knowing that I’m never alone to travel this journey has lessened the pain and struggles incurred by some of them.
Several months later, I was having coffee with a woman who had been severely addicted to slot machines for at least four years. We had met a year earlier after she read an article in our local newspaper about my story as an addict and the discoveries I made during my research. We quickly became friends and had since shared many of our personal struggles. I could tell she was very depressed, so I asked if she wanted to talk. She looked at me with very sad eyes and said, “I hate myself so much. I’ve lost all of my retirement money and I’m too old to go back to work. As a matter of fact, last night when you called, I was on my way to the garage to end my life. I really don’t know what else to do.”
SHARING WHAT I LEARNT
I asked if she wanted to hear what I had learned from my divine helpers about suicide. She nodded so I began by telling her about my own suicidal thoughts and what happened to me while driving back home from the casino that gloomy afternoon. I told her that the choice to commit suicide or not would always be hers, but ‘when you die, by your own hand or otherwise, you bring you with you’.
I went on to explain that if she did decide to take her life, she would not be judged or punished on the other side. She would only be loved and guided in her new journey where she would get a chance to work out what she was in the process of working out here.
This woman’s reaction to the information I had just shared was eerily similar to what mine had been when I first heard it. She looked at me with wide open eyes and said, “What you just told me makes me angry. What’s the use of killing myself if I bring me with me? The reason I want to end my life is because I despise who I’ve become.”
We talked for a while longer and before we parted ways, I suggested that if she asked her divine helpers for help, in her own way, chances were that she would receive the same type of guidance that each one of us will experience when we cross over.
THE MESSAGE CHANGED OUR LIVES
Three months later, I ran into this woman at the mall and while hugging me with a big smile on her face, she said, “I hate you.’ At first her comment took me off guard but then she said something that made me also smile. “Because of what you told me last time we met, I can’t even think about ending my life – even on my worst days. I’m still struggling with my addiction, but my load has lightened. And by the way, thanks for sharing.”
I’ve been addiction free for nine and half years now. I have a new appreciation for my experience as an addict as well as the other challenges I’ve had in my life. They have transformed me into the person I have become, and I like who I am. I continue to share the insights I receive from my divine guidance whenever I feel they will make a difference in someone’s life. It is through these insights that I learnt we are all connected and here for the same reason – to keep expanding our awareness about the special and important parts of God that we all are.