I had the pleasure of visiting Pensacola last week with some of my family. The weather was beautiful, and it was a very relaxing vacation. I love the beach!
Because I gave up smoking a little over 5 years ago:
I didn't have to worry about when the next smoke break would be on the drive there and back. I could use these breaks to stretch my legs, use the restroom, and get something to drink without feeling like I was holding everyone else back.
I didn't have to worry about getting my cigarettes wet while at the pool or beach.
I didn't have to rush through meals to make time for my after dinner smoke.
I didn't have to worry about offending others with my second hand smoke.
I didn't have to search out a suitable place to have a smoke.
I didn't have to worry about having enough cigarettes to last me through the trip.
I didn't waste one second of my vacation on smoking.
Five years ago I began my journey to freedom from smoking, and I have never regretted that decision. It is by far the best thing that I have ever done for myself. It wasn’t easy but after discovering this site a few days into my quit, I learned that it is doable and started believing that is was possible. I spent a lot of time here reading and educating myself about this addiction. And I decided that I wanted what so many people here had achieved – true freedom from this addiction. So I stuck around – and I learned from the elders, and I learned from quitters just a little bit ahead of me, and I even learned from people who relapsed. I saw it over and over again. People would relapse and would often struggle to get started again. I knew that I never wanted to have to restart the clock, and many times that was what kept me moving forward. So if you are having a bad day and are considering smoking just one, just remember that tomorrow is a new day – choose to remain smoke free – it is a decision that you will not regret!
Well today I turned 60! I thought that it might bother me a bit, but it doesn't. I am very proud of every year! And I am thankful to have good health (at least as far as I know) in spite of my almost 40 years of smoking.
On Tuesday, I was delivered a beautiful bouquet of roses and lilies. The card was not signed....I knew that it must be from my sister and/or niece. My niece called - yes they were sent by them but was not supposed to be delivered until Thursday. She called the florist and they insisted that they were not delivered. But how can that be - I am looking right at them .....
And guess what happened today.....the flowers that they did not deliver on Tuesday were delivered today!!!! I started to tell them but my niece had already told them so now I have two beautiful bouquets! I am blessed!
I was taken out to lunch! A computer/accounting problem that I have been dealing with all week was easily fixed! I received an essential oil diffuser with an assortment of oils! And some The Pioneer Woman bowls (I love dishes)! On top of all that my boss (he is a character) told me that I look pretty good for a 60 year old (compliments from him are a rare thing).
So a big Thank-you to Marilyn.H.July.14.14. for posting about my BD and thanks to all who wished me well!
Five years ago I was smoking like crazy - and not enjoying it one bit. I only smoked to get the nicotine. I am so happy that I wised up and put them down for good. If you are on the fence about quitting - take the plunge and do it! It is absolutely the very best thing that I ever did for myself!
1,700 days ago I made a decision that completely changed my life. I am not sure if I was very serious about it in the beginning because I had so many failed attempts. But I discovered this site and the many wonderful people here who dedicate so much of their time and energy into helping others, and I was inspired. I thought if they can do it, so can I!
I am wishing for everyone struggling with the decision to become inspired! It is a decision that you will never regret! So read and educate yourself about this addiction. Stay close, and don't be afraid to ask for help. And most of all be willing to give it the time it takes to get to a better place. It is not always easy, but it does get better with time.
Best wishes to all those just beginning their journey and to those who are struggling with their quit!
The last couple of months has been very stressful at work - faced with developing new procedures, submitting information to potential buyers in a new format, and dealing with a boss who has had a "itch" to fire someone. Luckily I have (so far) stayed out of the line of fire.
I would be a liar if I said that smoking had not entered my mind. But I am pleased to say that the thoughts have been easily dismissed.
I visited one of our properties last Thursday. I caught a ride with a co-worker from lunch back to my car. She is my age. She has a new vehicle (very nice) that she bought in January. It literally reeks of cigarette smoke - really makes me happy that I no longer smoke. I am sure that she does not even notice it. Just one of the many benefits of quitting - everything smells better!
OK Newbies! Make a list of the "pros" off quitting! There really are no "Cons" - so don't even go there! Review that list daily - and do whatever is necessary to remain smoke free! It is truly the very best thing that you will ever do for yourself!
It saddens me so to hear of a long time quitter's relapse. The stories are usually similar. Very often they distance themselves from the Ex community. And then they fall for the voice of temptation that says "just one won't hurt." But that one cigarette almost always leads to another one - maybe not immediately - but at some point they feel another one won't hurt since they "got by" with the first one. Many times alcohol is involved but not always.
So my advise to all quitters - old and new - stay close! Ask for help if you need it. Read your old blogs to help remember where you have been, and use them as a reminder of a place where you don't want to return. Even after 1500 plus days quit and being on this site almost daily, it still helps me to keep it fresh and to keep my quit solid.
Bless you all and hope that you have a relaxing Sunday afternoon!
It is hard for me to believe that I have now been smoke-free for 1,500 days, and I owe so much of my success to the wonderful members of this community, many who no longer participate here. The education about this addiction, along with the support, encouragement, and sometimes tough love that I receive here made all the difference this time. I am thankful for all who played a part, small or large, in my recovery.
To those who are just beginning or may be struggling, please remember that it is not over in a couple of weeks. It takes time to relearn living life without nicotine. It also takes time to figure out your new normal. Work each day and try to focus on the positive rather than the negative. Be willing to give your quit the time it takes to get to a better place in life - because this freedom is truly a beautiful thing!
It’s hard to believe that I have not had a cigarette in 4 years! When I first started my journey, I am not sure that I had made up my mind completely. My decision was a spur of the moment thing. I knew that I needed to quit and wanted to quit, but I am not sure that I had decided to.
Even though I knew that I was dealing with an addiction, I didn’t fully understand this addiction and how to break the cycle. I believe that it was the morning of my 4th day that I discovered this site. I was more than surprised to see all the current activity here. I spent most of the day reading and learning about nicotine addiction. The more time that I spent reading on EX, the more that I realized that quitting is possible. I had so many good examples of people who had quit and still spent a good deal of time here helping others. Even though these good people didn’t always agree, they were friends all working toward the same goal – to quit, remain quit, and help others to quit. I was impressed!
My plan was pretty simple:
I decided to use nicotine patches to take the edge off. Originally I planned on using the patch for 8 weeks – but shortened it to 6 when I felt ready to step down a little early.
I drank lots of water to flush out my system. Also tried to eat a little healthier and have lighter portions because smoking after a big meal was a major trigger.
I avoided people who smoke in the beginning. I announced to the world that I had quit and instructed my smoking acquaintances to not give me a cigarette if I asked for one.
I made a short list of things to do besides smoke – have a snack, take a short walk, read a book, take a bubble bath, sing along with the radio, etc.
I spent a lot of time here reading and educating myself about this addiction. Also encouraging and congratulating others helped keep my attitude positive.
And lastly - I did not smoke – no matter what!
It wasn’t easy – but it was doable! My make it or break it time was the period around day 80 for me. When I made it through that week-end, I knew that I was an ex-smoker and never wanted to fall into the cycle of being a serial quitter. When I accepted the fact that “one” is not an option for a recovering nicotine addict, I felt like I had won the battle. There were still tough times after day 80 – but I knew that I could make it through.
At four years quit, I still protect my quit. That is one reason that I spend time here. It is not only to help others, but also keep my quit strong. As a wise friend once said, “We are all nicotine addicts just one puff away from a relapse”.
I quit smoking May 1, 2014 - that is my quit date and will be forever. Even though I used the patch for 6 weeks - May 1, 2014 is MY quit date and no one will ever convince me otherwise. You quit begins when you put your last cigarette out - and has nothing to do with using a prescription drug or NRT as an aid.
Do not let anyone make you feel that your quit is diminished in any way because you did not go cold turkey. I admire folks that are able to quit going cold turkey, and I will never get on this site and push NRT on anyone. Cold turkey is good - but it is NOT the only way.
If NRT is in your plan - include in that that plan a step down schedule.