Friday, August 19, 2011

Eight Is Great

I have been nicotine free for 8 months!  The longest I have ever quit was for two years, but I was still partaking in many other vices that no longer exist in my life today.  Last summer I quit for three months, and started back up again, but by late December had come to the decision I did not want to smoke anymore.  I quit cold turkey, with the last cigarette I attempted to smoke tasting disgusting and only had a few drags before passing it off or stomping it out, I can't remember which.  I didn't use the patch, gum, or lozenges.  I don't say that because I think quitting cold turkey is better, I say that to let you know it's possible.  I have never tried using any of these before, but I have heard from other people's experiences that it prolongs withdrawl.

I was the kind of smoker who smoked primarily through stress and anxiety; I also used smoking during awkward situations where I wanted to escape or to excuse myself from a group of people and go be alone.  At the time I didn't know, or know how to, just excuse myself or simply take a moment to breathe.  I wanted instant relief.  Toward the end of my smoking, the nicotine gave me headaches, added to my anxiety, and just continued to make my clothes smell.  I didn't smoke first thing in the morning, and even though my daily intake was around a few cigarettes the majority of the time, I could easily go through half a pack in a few hours at night if it felt necessary, or if I was bored enough.  It didn't seem like just sitting still outside not doing something was possible.

I had no idea how bad the smoke smelled and how invasive it was, permeating my wardrobe, until I had quit.  It didn't take long to get my sense of smell back; I am so sensitive to the smell of smoke now!  I was putting groceries into my car one night and felt ill from the smell of smoke and I looked around and realized someone was walking into the store two lanes away from me and I could smell it! I have to roll up my windows in my car when someone in another car close by is smoking.  My taste buds are back too, which is making my elevated interest in cooking and baking that much more enjoyable.  And then, there are the rare moments where the smoke smells sweet, delicious almost, and I can close my eyes and envision sucking in the smoke and feeling my body relax.  But that is extremely rare and those moments are fleeting.  It wasn't a big struggle and I didn't feel very crazy for very long (in terms of quitting smoking)--I don't miss it.

I write this to let my friends and anyone else know it's possible to quit!

Are you struggling to quit smoking? Did you used to smoke--how did you quit smoking?  Share your struggles and successes by commenting below or you can always email me:

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