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Find your Why and Ditch your Cigarettes


I woke up this morning so mad at myself. I had been dreaming one of those technicolor dreams that you just feel like is real until you wake up. In my dream, I went smoking after having dreamed that I quit smoking. I told my neighbor all about the weird dream about quitting. Then I jerked awake this morning so furious and disappointed at myself for falling off of the wagon. It took several minutes before I realized that I hadn’t gone smoking.There was no familiar pack of cigarettes with a lighter laying next to it waiting for me next to the coffeepot in the kitchen. There are still just 2 cigarettes frozen in a ziplock bag waiting in the freezer just in case the zombie apocalypse starts.

I quit smoking this year on May the 1st. I went out and bought a vape pen and smoked 2 more cigarettes before quitting. Andy started Chantix 10 days earlier, so I knew that I had to quit, too. He was staring at my cigarettes like they were a four course meal, and he’d been starving for at least 10 years. I couldn’t take Chantix because of the side effects, so my vape pen and I quit cold turkey by diluting my nicotine intake down over a month’s time. Laugh all you want to but I succeeded at quitting smoking by being more stubborn than a Missouri mule. Knowing that Andy’s success depended on my success really gave me a lot of motivation to succeed. We had to quit together to be successful though we approached it from 2 different view points. Andy spent more time focused on the thought that he had smoked his last cigarette ever. I concentrated on daily chunks of time. I delayed my cravings. I drank water. I distracted myself. I depended on my vape pen in the car like it was my only friend. I told myself every morning that it had been 2 days or 3 days or 15 days since I had smoked a cigarette, and I may as well as add another day by the end of the day. I endured the congratulations of quitting feeling like a fraud because everyone says that people relapse, and I was just waiting to relapse and smoke again.

It’s only been 7 months and 13 days, but I haven’t relapsed yet and started smoking again. I have days when I think about it like today in traffic. I have moments when I think what would one cigarette hurt, and then I remember the headaches I had withdrawing from nicotine, and I pass. I have found my delay switch. My why is being around for my family and living a more healthy lifestyle. Smoking in Denver will kick you quicker than at sea level!! Though I still have moments when I think that I should go smoking out of sheer habit, I think it’s time that I start calling myself a non-smoker instead of someone who is quitting smoking. I’ve arrived at a better smelling place, and I like it. If you’re a smoker, find your why, and make up your mind to quit. You can do it. I did!!

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