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Christine12252016 Blog

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Hi ya'll. I've not been here in a while and thought I should stop in and leave a positive word or two.

 

I'm getting closer to my one year quit date. Exciting! I have to admit, I wasn't all that confident that I would come this far without even one puff! But I have! I'm proud of myself, and I make sure to reward myself now and then.

 

If I can do it, you can do it.

 

I thought that cigarettes had such a strong hold on me (40 years of smoking), that I'd not ever be able to quit.

However, last year I began to work more on myself with raising my self esteem, educating myself about nicotine by finding this site and whyquit.com and reading Allen Carr's book (Easy Way To Stop Smoking). All made a HUGE difference for me. The confidence grew and grew, then with the help of my doctor, counselor, and a little wellbutrin, I finally crossed over to the other side! I wasn't sure if I'd stay there, but just took it ONE DAY AT A TIME, and I just kept listening to/reading self help material to increase my self esteem, and kept educating myself more about nicotine as much as possible.

 

As of now, there are lots of days that will go by where I haven't had one thought about smoking. I do still have days where it may catch me off guard and I feel a crave, but I just take a deep breath and think about how much good that deep breath feels and does for me. I think that deep breathing is one of the best tools of knowledge you can take with you on your stop smoking journey. I still use it today. I'll even see how many deep breathes I can get in while going to and from my car, so I can get as much fresh outdoor air as possible. I'm exercising more, and I still hunt for healthy snacks to help with the oral fixation. I was never much of a gum person, but tic tac's are working nicely!. And apples, and cherries, and nuts, and not so healthy candy, etc.

 

I'm feeling much more confident now than I did the first month or so, but I make sure to not let myself get OVER confident. Because I learned (From THIS site), to expect to be caught off guard on occasion, even way down the road. A craving may arise out of nowhere, and you don't want to cave in!

 

So I just keep reminding myself how GLAD I am to be an ex smoker, and enjoy the pats on the back from people who are proud that I quit, and the increased self confidence it gives me knowing I can take control of my life!!  I was SO hooked on the nicotine and never thought I'd be able to quit, that I would say, "If I can quit smoking, I can do ANYTHING!" How LIBERATING it is!!!

 

Christine

 

N.O.P.E.

Get your FREE kindle eBook of Christine Seeley's 
How I Stopped Smoking - Secrets to Quitting Cigarettes

You can find it FREE on Amazon for only a couple of days!

Our very own EX Community website is promoted in the book!

Thanks to all of your caring support here on EX, you've helped me to dig deep while quitting. And during this time I have been able to find what it took for me to put my eBook together. So THANK YOU to all of you who have helped me in all of my posts throughout these past nine months! I am very grateful for you and this site!!

Any book reviews are very appreciated!!

THANK YOU!

 

Every day, 40 million adults and 3,800 children in the United States light up a cigarette [CDC]. Many think they won’t get addicted, or that they can quit whenever they want to. But addiction plays on their mind and keeps them puffing away. If you’re a smoker, perhaps you feel the same way. Or, maybe you feel that it’s impossible to quit at all. But the reality is that’s just not true. You can quit smoking and it doesn’t have to be difficult. In fact, you may be more ready than you know. You may even be ready right now. 

How I Stopped Smoking: Secrets to Quitting Cigarettes is a straightforward chronicle of author Christine Seeley’s journey to ending her own cigarette addiction. Seeley, who thought she may never quit smoking, shares her own step-by-step process, but also provides many ideas and secrets that will help you quit, too – and stay quit. In How I Stopped Smoking: Secrets to Quitting Cigarettes, you will learn how to get educated, make a plan to quit, and forge new habits out of the old ones. You’ll find tips for how to retrain your brain, raise your self-esteem and confidence, and battle those tempting cravings. And you’ll soon discover that every day, quitting gets a little bit easier.

How I Stopped Smoking: Secrets to Quitting Cigarettes will give you invaluable insight on what you can do to quit smoking. By staying honest with yourself, being proactive, and utilizing the helpful methods in this book, you, too, can conquer smoking once and for all!

Find this FREE (through Oct. 5th, 2017) Kindle Short Read eBook by searching "How I Stopped Smoking" on Amazon

I know I can get through this. I just feel like I have to be more careful than usual. I need to keep my self-esteem up there to help keep me from failing. Deep breath, hold it.. slowly let it out. Repeat. 

 

My quit was last Christmas Eve at midnight (2016). About two weeks later my brother went to the hospital cause he began to have trouble breathing. He was having heart failure and his lungs were filling up with fluid. Then, he discovered he had stage 3 lung cancer, including in the limp nodes, and another spot in a bone at the top of his leg. He's 74 years old, and smoked his whole life I assume. All of MY life anyway, and that's 54 years. And he smoked a lot, as did most of my family my entire life. The minute he found out of the cancer, he quit smoking. Just like that. I was quite proud of him, even though it took such a drastic discovery and after so very many years, for him to do so. 

 

He had daily doses of radiation in the leg until they were finished with that. In the mean time, he had to have two stents put into his heart and was told he may need a triple bypass in the future, but they wanted to work on the cancer first. He decided to began chemotherapy treatments on his lungs. I was saddened at that choice, but didn't know what else to tell him. It was pretty much an all day trip to the hospital each time. I believe it was 5 days a week. Every time he'd finish a round of chemo, his heart would begin to fail and lungs fill with fluid and he'd be back into the hospital. This happened about 5 times over 5 or 6 months, and he just kept getting weaker. 

 

His last round of chemo was about 2 weeks ago. Last Wednesday (about a week ago), his heart failed again for the last time. The chemo did him in. He passed away that afternoon in the hospital. Between his son, my sister, and myself, we are taking care of all the arrangements. We're having a memorial gathering, but it isn't until another week and a half from now. I just put the obituary in the paper today. I'm struggling to keep myself strong enough to be able to focus on my own things that need focusing on. But, I am pushing through! Thank you everyone here for the support. It's so good to know there are others who understand the difficulties.

 

Okay, I think I'm good now. Thanks for listening as I release my words.  Another deep breath in, hold it... Slowly letting it out. Thank you, God for walking with me. Amen.

 

Christine

 

N.O.P.E.

Anyone have any answers? Suggestions? 

I'm well into my quit (over 6 months) and have been successful. N.O.P.E.

I do get the occasional cravings, but not like I am when I'm focused on writing (computer keyboard writing).

I'm getting many cravings when I'm focused on writing.

Is it a focus thing? Have cigarettes actually helped me focus in the past? Could it be true?

 

I plan to do a lot of writing in my future, and have only just begun. I need to find a/some specific

alternative/s to use while writing.

 

Currently, I'm snacking on pretty much everything from licorice to nuts to fruit, toothpics, etc.

I do the deep breaths, I get off my chair, stretch, walk to another room and do whatever.

The urge does pass, but I'm getting them more often while writing. And if feels as tho the

urges are actually distracting me from focusing on my writing. Confusing! 

 

What to do, what to do. Thanks for any ideas.  Back to writing....

You guys are great. Thank you for all the encouragement. I'm thinking it was a good thing that I decided to come here earlier today and write a short blog, because... Afterwards, my friend called me up and asked me to go out to eat. We did. This person is a smoker, but respectful of my having quit. But after a couple of drinks, we decided to go to the casino.

I've not been to the casino in a long time (since before quitting). And my friend smokes like a fiend! It was a great test for me. And I can say for myself that I passed with flying colors.  Besides, I think I breathed in enough second hand smoke, that it was as if I smoked a pack. 

 

I say that it was a good thing that I stopped in earlier because I was able to read some of your comments and feel the support before I went out on that little test adventure. THANK YOU to all who responded. You're amazing.  sophia-22 gregp136 @jennifer_quit_05-01-14 elvan @

Hi ya'll.  I haven't posted in a while so thought I would. My now out-of-nowhere, sudden, every-once-in-a-while smoke urge reminds me that I should get back here.  It's been 4 months, 6 days, 17 hours, and some odd minutes now since I quit.  I'm pretty happy that I'm staying quit for this long, and get a little scared sometimes that I might cave in.  Then I start taking those deep breaths, and tell myself stuff like, "No, that is not what you want!  You like/love yourself too much to go back to THAT.  Then you'll just hate yourself for doing it! Yucky! Stinky! No need for it. You know that if you have just one, later it will be another one, then another..."  Then I distract myself and carry on.  =)

 

It DOES get easier. And the pangs/urges get further and further apart. I don't recall for sure, but I may have actually had a day here or there go by without thinking of smoking at all!  Excited to see that happening more and more!

One would think that at 1 month, 2 weeks, 5 days and 12 hours into one's quit, that it would be easier than it is.

Last couple of days I've been having some very tough moments and feel like I'm getting closer and closer to giving in.  WHY is this!? I know that I'm feeling deprived at these times, and need to stop feeling that way, SOMEHOW. The only thing I can think of is, did I mess something in Allen Carr's book? What do ya'll recommend I do now? My mind is of course trying to trick me into thinking I'll feel so good to have a cigarette. I will allow myself to picture it (smoking) briefly, only to realize that it will taste terrible and I would really be mad at myself for having given in to a great quit. Am I treading dangerous ground by allowing myself to picture this?  Is this the brink of self-destruction? I keep forgetting that this could also be my lack of meds (Wellbutrin). I started cutting back a week or two ago, maybe too much. I will have to keep watch with this aspect. I realize I may have been trying to cut back too soon, considering I was a 40 year long smoker. It has also been a while since I blogged, partly due to the new website format. I'm still learning how to navigate it. 

 

So anyway, I feel a bit better already just having blogged. Thank ya'll for being here and listening! =)

 

I will NOT smoke today. N.O.P.E.

Description

 

I'm a firm believer in self-improvement, which is why I am here. I've been a smoker for 40 years, and it's time to quit. I'm looking forward to the new me; To being myself again!

Websites: www.christinesclothescloset.net, www.thecoziehome.com, and spartahomecareprofessionals.com


Brief Description

I smoked for 40 years averaging 1 1/2 packs a day for many years. My Quit Day: 12/24/2016 at Midnight. Websites: www.christinesclothescloset.net, www.thecoziehome.com, spartahomecareprofessionals.com


Website

www.thecoziehome.com


Location

No location in profile.


Interests

self-improvement, games, learning


Skills

ecommerce, creativity, problem solving, organizing


I was already a sugarholic, but since my quit seems I'm eating more of it. And the salt! I've never eaten a lot of salt before. Now it seems like it's constantly pretzels or popcorn. Chocolate, licorice, hard candies, you name it.  Tell me most of it is a phase! 

Got about 6 or 8 sudden hard craves today, too. I felt close to giving in a couple of times. Uggg... 

One thing I AM learning is that, keeping busy really helps. My problem is that I do most of my work from home, and am on the computer a lot. Seems like everytime I get up from the computer is a cue/trigger (cause I used to go outside to smoke). When I am away from the house part of the day it really helps. 

Thanks for all the support you guys! Yer the bomb. =)  

I will not quit my quit. N.O.P.E.

Christine12252016

It's Getting Easier!

Posted by Christine12252016 Jan 17, 2017

Apparently, that three week mark I've read about has some truth in it. I've passed my three week quit a couple of days ago, and over the last few days I've noticed that I'm not thinking of cigarettes as much. It could also be that I'm a little busier than I was before, but still, I think it will continue to get easier. =)  

My almost 73 y/o brother is about to have a three-way bypass in a couple of days (heavy smoker). I'm hoping he will be sticking around for a while longer and nothing goes wrong throughout this process. If something does go wrong and he should pass away, I must stick to my quit! I feel confident that I can, too. Just need to avoid my negative, smoking sister as much as possible. But that will be difficult since she's super close with our brother (she's 71), and I'll need to be there for support. *Sigh. It's okay, I'll still do it. =)

I AM doin' it!  

N.O.P.E. !!

Christine12252016

Three Weeks Quit

Posted by Christine12252016 Jan 15, 2017

Made it to three weeks quit, as of 22 hours ago. The last couple of days seemed to be easier. Not sure if it's cause I've been busier or ? I think my deep breathing is getting to be more habitual, particularly when I start to feel stressed, and that may be helping.  I AM looking forward to it being easier and easier as time goes on. All while trying to keep my guard up! =)

Thank you to all of you supporters! You guys rock! Heck, it's nice getting support not just for quitting, but for ANYthing! For that, I am still sticking close by. =) 

This came to mind the other day, and I thought that some of you might be able to relate to it.  It is a sort of poem I discovered many years ago. Maybe some of you have seen it before. I related it to relationships, but thought some of you who quit several times might relate. I like it so much that I printed it years ago, put it in a frame and on a wall in my house! =)

There’s A Hole In My Sidewalk
– by Portia Nelson

Chapter One

I walk down the street.
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.
I fall in.
I am lost… I am helpless.
It isn’t my fault.
It takes forever to find a way out.

Chapter Two

I walk down the same street.
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.
I pretend I don’t see it.
I fall in again.
I can’t believe I am in the same place.
But it isn’t my fault.
It still takes a long time to get out.

Chapter Three

I walk down the same street.
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.
I see it is there.
I still fall in… it’s a habit.
My eyes are open.
I know where I am.
It is my fault… I get out immediately.

Chapter Four

I walk down the same street.
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.
I walk around it.

Chapter Five

I walk down another street.  

Is it harder not to smoke when you're depressed? I've been feeling depressed today and it makes me want to just give up on the quit. I guess I just feel like beating myself up when I get depressed which is why I feel like I'm going to cave in. I lose confidence and then get worried that I'm gonna give in. *Sigh.

Long drive (a good hour or so) to a new dentist that I found online. Was a bit nervous about the weather. Rain was suppose to be here later (this evening?) and I was concerened about getting home right after in case it became freezing rain. I did great on the drive there. Didn't think about cigarettes very much at all. Ended up staying at the dentist for 3 hours. Must be a trigger for me to stand at the check out desk at the end, cause I was wantin' one! Then I had the long drive.....in the rain....after dark. Glad I had some hard candy with me. About 3 different times my mind was strongly going there and picturing me having one, but I didn't. =) NOPE. I've concluded that my worst time of day is the late afternoon into evening (about 3 to 8pm). Anyway, made it home safe. Nothin' freezing yet I guess. Next appointment is in February, still crappy winter time, but made the appointment for an earlier time in the day. This was my first long drive without smoking. Feeling proud. =D

I have a feeling that I'm catching onto my personal circumstances that contributed to how I have come to my own quit. Which all takes place over many years. I've been putting the pieces together. I still haven't got all the answers, but can now see some of the steps that led me to today (Smober: 2W 1D 12h 48m 39s). And of course everyones circumstances are different, but if my story helps anyone in anyway, I'll be glad. I'll begin with some history.

My first cigarette was a Camel no filter. I was just 10 years old. Everyone in the family smoked. I snuck a pack from my mom's carton and took it to my bedroom (no one would notice or suspect a 10 y/o, right?), opened the window and lit up. I didn't actually inhale though. I just puffed it into my mouth and blew it out.  I had two of these smokes before the pack was discovered and confiscated. Then one day after dinner, my parents decided to "teach me a lesson" and made me smoke two of the cigarettes in front of them at the dinner table. So I cried and faked coughing, etc. just to try and get the humiliation over with. I think that kept me away from the demons (the cigarettes, not my parents) for a couple of years, until peer pressure set in.

About age 12 or 14 I inhaled my first cigarette. I was hiding out in the neighborhood with a couple of friends, and we lit up our cigarettes. One friend watched me suck the smoke into my mouth (like I did at age 10), and blow it out. She asked, "how come you don't inhale it"? I was like, "huh?, I did!" (You see, I thought that inhaling was like I was doing, and not inhaling would be to blow INto the filter.  LOL)  She said, "no, like this", and showed me how it was done. I'll never forget that moment. That moment when I thought to myself, "are you kidding me!? Into your lungs!?" And so I thought that if they can do, I can too. That was the real beginning of my addiction. I sat and smoked two of them, and was really dizzy when I stood up. LOL Not sure what brand they were but I do remember we often would smoke either Marlboro reds, Kools, Salems, Newport or some other brands I can't think of right now. But they all had filters. lol

Naturally, I had no clue how addictive these things were, let alone how bad for our health. By age 16, mom and dad knew that I smoked and I knew that they knew, but I always hid it. Until one day, while I was riding in the back seat of the car, they lit up in the front and I leaned forward and said to them, "Since you both know that I smoke, I may as well smoke in front of you, right?" (knowing that age 16 was a good age for asking this question). That's when the smoking increased. They agreed, and I lit up. I probably didn't even smoke every single day until I was able to smoke in front of them. It easly led to a pack a day. As a side note, I remember at about age seventeen buying a carton for $4.95.  Wow.

Yes, I had been told that cigarettes are addicting, but I really had no clue. By age 18, I had decided that I will quit... when I want to. Then after getting a little educated on the addiction, I decided that I wanted to quit before I turned 30. Yeah, right. By that time, my addiction was much stronger and I was up to 1 1/2 packs a day.  I had tried a couple of times, but didnt even last a day.  Smoked right on through both pregnacies, thinking very little of it. Smoked in my house all the time. Everything smelled yucky, but ya got used to it I guess.

Years went by. Cigarettes controlled me more and more. And I knew it. I was always pretty good at being truthful to myself (which I think helps in quitting). I would continually plan my days and life around cigarettes. Get a job where I could smoke on my breaks, became an entrepreneur (my own boss), and have been working from home now for years.

THEN, things began to happen. My son was about ten years old and was learning in school about how awful smoking is. He also had seen me try to quit before, too. He suddenly began pitching fits when I would smoke in the house. He hated that I smoked and that I was hurting my health, but he also didn't want the second hand smoke in the house. How could I argue with him when I know he is right? It eventually pushed me outside to smoke. MY HABIT CHANGED right there. It took some time. I would try to sneak one in my bedroom upstairs and open the window, but he would smell it and have a fit (was kinda funny, but not). I remember that one of the main times I wanted to smoke was while I was on the computer. But I got used to being on the computer without, and having to step outside to smoke. I hated just standing outside wasting time doing nothing (except smoking). And many times the Michigan weather would be freezing, windy or rainy. 

When mom died suddenly (arotic aneurysm), I was so depressed and my smoking increased. I felt as though I was trying to smoke as much as she used to (which was a lot). As if I were subconsciously trying to join her! At the time, I had a contractor job at a place where I could smoke, and I found myself up to 2 1/2 packs a day.  I got angry and decided to make changes. I got rid of that nasty negative contractor job (that in itsself was unhealthy for me), and just started working mainly from home, and actually quit smoking for a whole 33 days while using Chantix. But the Chantix kept making me nauseous and I stopped taking it and started smoking again. I couldn't quit thinking about cigarettes. To tell you the truth, in hindsight, I think I put all the weight on the Chantix and not enough on myself, my beliefs, and my mind.

So I creeped back up to smoking regular again. Probably a pack or more a day. But it gradually went down a little. I was taking Welbutrin for anxiety and depression, and my cigarettes were down to about 10 to 15 per day. Maybe partly due to the Welbutrin, but also some habit changes. It got old having to go outside every single time, especially if it were storming or freezing cold. I started going out and smoking just a 1/2 cigarette at a time.  Since I was home all the time, I knew I could go back out anytime I felt like it, so 1/2 one would do me just fine. And being on the computer actually helped. It became a distraction for me. It would keep my mind and hands busy and I learned to be okay on it without the cigarette.

I decided that I've reached an age (54) that if I did not quit soon, it could really start to affect me in so many different ways that I'm not willing to accept. So I decided to tell the doc I want to quit and make a plan. Planning helped a lot. The healthcare system worked well for me in this matter. The counselor and a pharmacist are both at my doctors office, too. While I was talking to the counselor about the plan, the pharmacist came in and joined our conversation about my quit smoking plan. It was great.

I decided I wanted to cut down gradually and use the patch, and have the gum on the side for emergencies. In the mean time, I began to get more educated and boy does THAT make all the difference! That's the first thing I would tell someone wanting to quit. Read all you can about the nicotine addiction. 

Anyway, I was all set up with the nicotine patch plan of 8 weeks or something like that (maybe longer), and had the gum. I was only smoking about 10 to 15 cigs a day to start. The first week I cut to 8 a day. The next week 6, then 5, 4, 3, ect. In the mean time, I chose a quit day of Christmas. The timing was fairly close anyway, and I thought it would make for an easy to remember quit day. Part of the plan was making changes in my habits, deep breathing, etc. The plan was to use the patch while cutting down, and gum just when really needed, then after quitting stay on the patch for weeks, etc. But after I became more educated with whyquit.com website and becomeanex.org, it did not make sense to me to stay on the patch. Heck, if I can cut down to zero cigarettes, why keep the nicotine!?! That was my thought process that did it for me.

I think that I was lacking some confidence at first which is why I wanted to cut down gradual and use the patch. But as I became educated on the subject, my confidence grew. It seemed that all the pieces to my puzzle were in place. The time felt right. So Christmas Eve I had 1/2 cigarette left that I finished that evening, then at midnight I took off the patch and haven't looked back. That was the last of Nicotine for me. I have never felt so liberated. I had said before that if I can quit smoking, I can do anything!

And that's my story. That's how my own personal quit came about.

I guess sometimes we just arent ready to quit. We have to have all the pieces of our puzzle there in order for it to happen and to stick. I know one thing though; Ya gotta get the right frame of mind. Ya gotta get smarter! And the way to do that is to learn/read all you can about nicotine addiction, etc. Watch/listen to Utube videos. Read. Learn....

And get positive. =)

Thanks for reading.  

>>> N.O.P.E. <<<

Christine