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Lanie's Hope

Walk in Memory/Walk for Hope – Sept 11, 2021

Walk in Memory/Walk for Hope- Sept 11, 2021 7:30AM, Bob Miller Middle School, 2400 Cozy Circle, Henderson, Nevada

Lanie's Hope Team Walks in Hope

Lanie’s Hope Walk Team

Lanie’s Hope’s proudly supports the Walk in Memory/Walk for Hope.  We walk to remember those who have been lost to suicide, to honor the family members and survivors, and to shine a light of hope for those who may be considering suicide. Compulsive Gamblers have the HIGHEST suicide rate of any group, with 1 in 5 compulsive gamblers considering or attempting suicide.

Let’s face it friends – the past year has been challenging on all fronts! Mental health issues have come front and center with the added stress of “social distancing”, loss of personal connection, for some loss of jobs or housing and, sadly for some loss of loved ones.

Our community will be walking  together to honor those we have lost and celebrate those attempt survivors who are such a vital part of the suicide prevention community!

The Walk in Memory/Walk for Hope is near and dear to my heart and I have been intimately involved in the Walk as well as sponsoring organization, the Nevada Coalition for Suicide Prevention since my first walk experience in 2009 after we lost Lanie. This year, I will not be able to personally attend the walk as the pandemic impacted my living situation and we are currently “nomads”, traveling the country for a year by RV.  (That story is for another time…but trust me…God has turned a “challenge” into a BLESSING!  Still I know that Lanie’s Hope supporters and the Recovery Community are STRONG SUPPORTERS of the mission to reduce suicide. If you have a Lanie’s Hope T-shirt, please where it:)  If not, you can get a Prevent Suicide T-shirt at the walk.  What you wear is not important – showing your support matters!

God Bless you all and welcome back to the Walk in Memory/Walk for HOPE!

Bea Aikens
Aprile 21, 2021

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hh9B5udpxKw

I invite each of you to walk with us on Saturday, September 11, 2021 as we take suicide and gambling addiction out of the darkness and into the light.

 

Nevada Conference on Problem Gambling – June 11, 2021

Nevada Conference on Problem Gambling – June 11, 2021
Las Vegas, Nevada

SAVE THE DATE and plan to attend the Nevada Council on Problem Gambling’s annual conference!  After a year of “shelter in place” and a very unusual “new normal”, it is with great joy that we look forward to participating in the 2021 Nevada State Conference on Problem Gambling!

The Council has asked us to moderate a “Recovery and Resilience” panel, in which people in recovery from Gambling Disorder will share their unique experiences in maintaining abstinence during the Pandemic. Details of this and other programs will be forthcoming. For now, “Save the Date” and plan to join us at the SunCoast Resort in Las Vegas. for this one day LIVE event!

 Details and registration will be available soon  at Nevada Council on Problem Gambling

 

#TodaySoFar

January 6, 2021

“Today So Far” …. I hear this every time I participate in a 12-step meeting. And…I SAY IT at every meeting when asked what recovery milestone has been met.  “Today So Far” is the greatest gift I’ve ever been given! It means I’ve learned a better way of life. And I haven’t had to place a bet or have a drink to live “life on life’s terms.” It keeps me in touch with the fact that recovery is attained one day at a time. It is not an “event” it is a process. Each day in recovery is a gift.

Today (So Far) is a milestone of sorts. It is my 25th “Birthday” in Gamblers Anonymous. It feels right to share this morning’s Journal Entry with you…it’s the best way I can express what I’m feeling today. Journaling is one of the best tools I’ve found in recovery. My feelings and thoughts are expressed unfiltered and unedited…they just flow and I can release them, honor them, and let them go. So excuse any typos, incomplete sentences or grammatical errors. This is how I journal. So..here’s my #TodaySoFar entry.

My Birthday Journal Entry

Weds 1/6/2021
25th GA Birthday
Nashville,

Curious. Today is a day to give thanks for the endless gifts and blessings of recovery. Yet my thoughts are of Tommy W., Anton’y, and Lanie…those who didn’t survive this insidious, patient, destructive disease.  All three of these beautiful souls, along with countless others we lost, experienced glimpses of the gifts…they held the delicate petals of early recovery in their hands and asked in wonder “Can this be REAL?  Can my life REALLY be better…can it be THIS good?”

The internal battle of early recovery is palpable..”Am I really worthy? I’ll probably screw it up again, so why bother?”
No!  I want this. I AM worthy. Im going to fight for a better life – free from the bet and free to love and be loved.” Read more →

On the Titanic Twice and Lived to tell

I’ve been on the Titanic Twice…and Lived to tell:)  Actually in the Recovery Community, we call changing addictions “changing seats on the Titanic.”  bottom line is, an addict is going to die if they don’t get help.

That was me.

But today is my 31st Anniversary of NOT DRINKING!  Yay!  I rarely even talk about that, but giving up alcohol is a pretty big deal. Especially if “one is too many and 20 is never enough”, as was the case with me. It’s the case with anyone who has a Substance Use Disorder. Mine substance was alcohol.

Like most addicts, I started drinking at a young age.I had my first drink at the age of twelve.  Ever the over-achiever and went on to become the “Chung Queen” of my Sorority. That seemed pretty cool at the time. It wasn’t cool. Eventually I couldn’t go a day without drinking, albeit for many years I was told I was “so much fun” AKA “a happy drunk.”  Ultimately, and predicatbly, the fun had long since stopped when I reached out for help and joined a 12-step support group.  Thirty-One Years Ago today. Cool! And thanks God!

The “Changing seats on the Titanic” came about when I found or, more accurately, embraced, my love for video poker machines. I’m sure I was a compulsive gambler when I gave up alcohol. I just didn’t want to “give up everything.”  Somehow I thought perhaps I would disappear.  What if the only things that made me “me” were the activities I participated in, the parties I attended, the beer I consumed….the list goes on.   What if I wasn’t fun anymore? And (even worse) what if I couldn’t have fun without these things?

Anyone who knows me today, l will not be surprised by the fact that “My name is Bea and I’m a woman in long-term recovery.” In fact, I’m an active and outspoken advocate for “social change in problem gambling” – how we deal with it, how we think of it and how we treat people impacted by it.

It’s weird to remember that, there was a time where I would freely tell folks that I was “in recovery from Alcoholism.”  Their responses were kind and encouraging and always some venison of “Good For YOU!!” And “Way to GO!!”

Rarely did I ever mention gambling, or that it was a problem for me or….eventually when I “admitted defeat”, that I was a “Compulsive Gambler.” (GASP!)  There was a bonafide reason for this. At first I thought the bias I felt when I did venture a toe in the water to mention my Gambling Disorder, was only in my head. It wasn’t. It isn’t. The bias still exists today.

Thank goodness society has evolved to a place where we witness far greater understanding of alcoholism and substance use disorder. People generally understand that these disorders are real. The people who struggle with them matter. AND society as a whole has a moral and fiscal responsibility to offer compassion,  help, hope and TREATMENT for those who do struggle with these disorders.

Lanie’s Hope, my colleagues in gambling services field and my friends (whether they are personally in recovery or not) work daily to speak openly about this most hidden addiction of Gambling Disorder. I thank every person who speaks up and speaks out. I thank every person who strives to make a difference by changing their language around addiction and gambling disorder. Who no longer scoffs at “compulsive gambling” as a weakness or moral failing.

It is not. My Gambling Disorder is as real, as my Alcoholism. Today, on my 31st “birthday” of living life without Alcohol, lI celebrate my recovery. I thank God for letting me sit on the Titanic and not die! And I pray for those who are right this moment claiming another seat on the Titanic.  People with Gambling Disorder have a very high propensity for what is called “dual addiction.”  Some experts say as many as 70% of us have more than one addiction. What works?

The same thing that worked for my Alcoholism.  Twelve Step meetings, therapy, l talking about it, coping skills and community and family support. We’ve got a long way to go before society at large understands that “addiction is addiction” And TREATMENT?  YES – treatment works for Gambling Disorder too! But can you FIND it? In Nevada, professional treatment provided by Certified Problem Gambling Counselors can be found through Nevada Council on Problem Gambling or on their resource page  at Nevada Problem Gambling Treatment Providers

If you or someone you love is on the Titanic, throw them a lifeline. Let them know that help is available and it works. Tell them you care about them. Hope and help are available One Day At a Time!

Walk in Memory/Walk for Hope – September 14, 2019

Walk in Memory/Walk for Hope- Sept 14, 2019 7:30AM, Bob Miller Middle School, 2400 Cozy Circle, Henderson, Nevada

Lanie's Hope Team Walks in Hope

Lanie’s Hope Walk Team

Lanie’s Hope’s proudly supports the Walk in Memory/Walk for Hope.  We walk to remember those who have been lost to suicide, to honor the family members and survivors, and to shine a light of hope for those who may be considering suicide. Compulsive Gamblers have the HIGHEST suicide rate of any group, with 1 in 5 compulsive gamblers considering or attempting suicide.

In 2014, the walk  was dedicated to raising awareness of  gambling addiction and suicide.  I was honored and humbled to serve as the keynote speaker. I made a promise to myself and to God to spend my life raising awareness of the social issues surrounding problem gambling. I would do ANYTHING within my power to prevent just one death due to a gambling related suicide. Lanie’s Hope’s website gets more “hits” on the topic of “suicide” than any other topic. Compulsive gamblers who are struggling are reaching out for help. Suicide is obviously on the minds of too many compulsive gamblers! Won’t you please walk with us this year, and raise awareness of gambling addiction and suicide.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hh9B5udpxKw

I invite each of you to walk with us on Saturday, September 15, 2018, as we take suicide and gambling addiction out of the darkness and into the light.

Blessings,

Nevada Conference on Problem Gambling – June 20-21, 2019

Nevada Conference on Problem Gambling – June 20-21, 2019
Las Vegas, Nevada

SAVE THE DATE and plan to attend the Nevada Council on Problem Gambling’s annual conference! At this time of this posting, the conference presenters and details have not yet been announced.  This event never disappoints. Consistently professional, organized, educational and informative, this is one conference I attend faithfully year after year.  Executive Director, Carol O’Hare and her team do an amazing job putting this conference together!  Details and registration will be available soon  at Nevada Council on Problem Gambling

The educational event will be held at the  Sun Coast Hotel, Las Vegas, Nevada June 20-21, 2019.

 

Problem Gambling Awareness: A Community Engaged – March 9, 2019

Problem Gambling Awareness: A Community Engaged – March 9, 2019

East Las Las Vegas Community Center
Las Vegas, NV 89101
Saturday March 9, 2019
1:00PM – 4:00PM

Problem Gambling is a community and public health matter. So is Recovery!  If you don’t think problem gambling impacts you…think again.  Statistics show that 6% of Nevadans are, or will become, problem  gamblers.  Statistics also show that for every ONE compulsive gambler, another TEN individuals are impacted – their spouse, children, parents, employer and friends.   Behind the “statistics” are people:)  That’s why the Nevada Council on Problem Gambling is hosting this event  focusing on “the very human side of problem gambling.”

I  like that the Council is focusing on the “Celebration” of Problem Gambling Awareness month! The focus is on the solution and supporting a healthy lifestyle.  We will hear from folks in recovery, peers and professionals, who will share how and why they became engaged in promoting awareness. These same folks will share actives that encourage healthy living, joy and recovery.  (I’ll be doing a line-dancing demo so THAT should be fun.  LOL.  I’m definitely a beginner!)

Whether you’re an advocate, a person in recovery, a policy maker or an engaged community member, please join me and Lanie’s Hope as we support the Nevada Council on Problem Gambling for Problem Gambling Awareness: A Community Engaged.

 

 

 

A Compelling and Passionate Speaker
Bea Aikens couples her personal experience with extensive knowledge of the disease of compulsive gambling to build a compelling platform for civic, community and national organizations seeking knowledge and understanding of the disease of disordered gambling. To engage Bea for your upcoming event, contact her at
Contact Info
Lanie's Hope
P.O. Box 60214
Boulder City, NV 89006
702.812.1922
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