It is difficult for me to come forth, but I fell down last night. After 117 days smokefree, that followed 36 days threatened by a similar ego malady, I flat out let a situation at work to make me very angry. Humility will be on my mind today and onward.
I know enough to usually be able to guard myself from such anger, but it just plain got the best of me. So, my "no matter what" got assaulted, and like many addicts, I let myself smoke AT the problem. I smoked about 4-5 cigarettes, then gave them to my wife to throw away. That was last night about 7 p.m., so my 1st 24hours will turn over at 7 pm tonight.
It is so hard to let go of my 117 days. I could use some love and input today from my family here at Become an EX. I'm sure I will be able to derive something learned about this, but right now I'm still a bit emotionally shook up, and quite disappointed in myself.
We seek the Light because we are that Light. Be good to yourself. Flee from darkness, keeping it behind you at all times. Be hopeful, and when hope seems far away, pray for it to return to fill you back up. Faith and Hope are the seeds of happiness and freedom from the things that tend to haunt us and temp us towards the darkness.
A more pure physical condition is the foundation of a good or better life experience. Clean air, lungs, psyche are married for life.
One who doubts the existence of Light and darkness is destined for foolishness.
I don't know why I am feeling like coming forward at this time, but my guess is that the accumulated shame and or sorrow for lost years is wearing on me. I'm not trying to collect sympathy here, or at any time for that matter. I have been encouraged by many on this site (family) to be honest at all times, hence my following thoughts.
I have been kind of quiet lately because I feel like I have lost all credibility here. I've been back so many times, beginning in 2011. I no longer place any credibility in myself, as far as being a non-smoker goes.
I've gone back and read a lot of the old thoughts and everything runs together. Same promises, commitments, spiritual rhetoric, insights that sounded good at the time. My conclusion right now is that smoking fills one with so much B.S. that it becomes harder to decipher the truth from fiction or illusions the longer one keeps smoking, or vaping, or patching, or chewing gum, or whatever.
After going 36 days, "slippin" again, now with 19 days smoke free. The slip only slapped me harder than ever before. One day. Next day I got up on the horse again, now continuing in some kind of trance, filled with frustration, fear, you know, all the things none of us want. I usually don't swear, but anger comes out frequently. Some days are smoother than others, and I have not smoked a cigarette in 19 days now.
It seems like finalizing to an end the smoking habit is trowing all sorts of character defects up in my face. Mainly weakness. As I write this note I am getting more and more angry at our country for letting the tobacco companies continue to kill us. It's not all our fault, you know.
Even after reading over these thoughts and ramblings, I wonder what good it could possibly do to share things like this. The only thing that has gotten me through these immediate past 19 days is a hint from Dale.....
When any kind of smoking thought comes into my head, I just say as many times as I need to,"I don't do that anymore." It has worked for today, and that is the only block of time I can manage.
Well, well, well. I've been trying to decide what I wanted to say to my friends here, but the only thing I can come up with is the truth. I fell. I let my own head steer me in a wrong direction. I bought a pack of American Spirit Light Organics, and proceeded to our popular sports bar here in Fountain Hills, had a few drinks, smoked the first cig on the way to the bar. So, thinks didn't get too far crazy, and I woke up the next morning feeling horrible. Not just physically, but emotionally to the max. Bottom line here is that I got back up on the horse and now am in my 3rd day clean again. I still feel quite wounded, but maybe I just needed that last slap in the face to remind me how interwoven alcohol and cigarettes really are. They both are quite contrary to good health, and one seems to lead to the other, if one has that habit pattern deeply ingrained into their psyche. I normally don't drink alcohol at all...that's just the way I like to be. I usually like to be healthy, clean and sober. So, I am praying a lot, turning this whole thing back over to God, as I understand him. Today is day 3, and I feel quite strong about that.
So, I felt it the most honest thing to do is come clean with you good folks. Any help, or input would be appreciated ...I obviously missed something cucial. Mainly, the one about "NO MATTEWR WHAT".
Yes, Comrades, this was my original goal, and I evidently have achieved this for these past 32 days. I am really okay with that. Also, yes I am still using a crutch to maintain that goal. However, I honestly look at my history, and see that after 58 years of mostly active smoking, being without the constant inflow of carcinogens, tars, and whatever else goes into American Spirit Organic Lights, I am kinda proud that this part of my process has accumulated to this time and day. I realize how serious this is.
Tomorrow, at 5 p.m. I am meeting with my ENT doctor and his incredible Head Nurse. We will find out if the "pre-cancer possibilities" will show some signs of going the other way. I was assured that if I quit smoking cigarettes that day, it would be easily reversible. I've had other Doctors try to scare me into quitting, but this seemed too honesty and forthright to ignore.
Okay, here we are on my 35th day smokefree. Some honesty is wanting to come out of me...as some of you nice folks might remember, my ENT doc scheduled me for a check up this last Monday regarding the pre c cells, and his feedback was quite positive. As he told me how much better my throat looked, I had the thought of lighting up in the parking lot immediately upon getting back in my car. How devious this little demon can be. Fortunately I vaped instead, and the issue passed. I know some of you might think I failed by vaping nicotine, but I am just trying to do this thing the way many others have done it successfully. I have read everything available about the pros and cons of vaping, and thus far I have not broken down and filled my body, mind, and soul of the poisonous effects of carbon monoxide , tars, or carcinogens. Further, my doc informed me about the cell scare, and I went to the car and smoked 3 cigarettes before the facts really set in. At 8:15 the next morning, I put my last cigarette out and said....”NO MORE!!!” That was it.....
Done, finee` finished!!!
The depth of the demon doubt and the little irritating voice astonishes me even now. That has been the whole downfall so far. You know, thinking that smoking is okay, the next pack will be the last, gettingbuzzed on alcohol, making promises to quit in the morning...it all sounds and feels exactly like alcoholic issues, but it is so much deeper and more subtle. Most of you know the picture, I`m sure...
So, Ill sign off for now. I work on keeping the demon quiet every day, and am looking forward to getting some free time from that.
Deep down I clearly know that the whispers come from my own head, so don’t get too worried about me!
I just have to dump in an effort to get some feedback, most of which I have probably experienced before. This is what makes this so hard. I feel sometimes like I have been down this road so many times and about the only thing I’ve got going for me is that I have not smoked for 29 days. No more cigarettes, ever. That is just something I don’t do anymore.
Now, I still have to face the nico demon. My thoughts about less than thinking is reentering me because the newness of the quitting smoking tobacco has worn off. Not so much excitement about breaking the habit, just saving my life.
So, I guess I have been feeling a little sorry for myself about not being a real ex. Don’t know how I’m gonna get completely off the nicotine...Ive gotten this far 3 times before, gone back and re read my words from 2011 and sometimes I just feels like I’m full of B.S. repetitive promises, for sure this time rhetoric and it makes me want to puke about myself. I’m really not a bad guy according to folks, but I seem to be stuck in this dilemma for about the last 3 days. You may have noticed I kinda backed off my frequent enthusiastic blasts. I want this more than Ive wanted anything ever. Nuff said...
It just can't be this easy! I made it 180 days about 2 years ago, then folded. Been thinking about quitting again for all of that time. Ouch. Allen Carr's Book " The Easy Way Boot Camp" really put the icing on the cake this time. I would listen to the rendition of his current release over and over and over again, until I finally got the message that all I had to do was go 24 hours without smoking a cigarette. I made it but was vaping for NRT. But, I got off the cigarettes totally for 180 days. It's taken me 2 years,actually 2 1/2 year of wasted smoking time to jump back on the horse.
This time is clearly different. I am 24 hours a day aware of the danger of even ONE PUFF. I can't even stand the smell of smoke. I do believe that a healthy fear of this powerful (but NOT ALL powerful) addiction is what is working these days. I know 24 days is a drop in the bucket, but I also am wise enough to know that you can only eat an elephant one bite at a time. (Not that I would even consider taking a bite out of elephant!
So, I found a post from a few years ago that has really helped me through some relatively light rough spots during these past 24 days of smobriety. I thought it helpful to share it..if it helps even ONE person, it's worth the electrons:)
Hi Kids!!! This is Michael, (Mavihoja) and I just feel like reaching out. I probably should put this in BLOG format, but I just really need to get out there and share my plight right now. First, I have been trying to use the Become An Ex site, group, methodology, whatever it is that I have become so reliant upon to finalize my having become a forever NON-SMOKER...EX ADDICT, what ever that is. There is something so deep within me that tells me frequently how important this is right at this point in my life. It truly has become life or death patterns in my thinking, acting, believing, etc..
So, here it is. I have not smoked a cigarette for 23 days. My starting line happened at 8:15 A.M. on Thursday morning, a little over 3 weeks ago. I am smoke free, but not nicotine free which makes me feel like I am a liar, cheating the path that so many of you have figured out. Being smoke free is one thing, being smoke free and nicotine free is another, obviously much better, and final. So, the position I am in mentally and emotionally is still in the almost good enough psychological head position. This is exactly one of the things that have plagued me for a long, long, time. It feels like no matter what I do, there is always a way for me to fell "not quite good enough". and that, my dear friends is what makes me CRAZY!
I am well aware that this syndrome isn't new to any of us. But, the absolutely worst thing I could do now is to fold and decide to give into the monster's little voice.
Really, it doesn't matter that my wife still smokes (much less than she did). It doesn't matter that one can grab one of her cigarettes and sneak out to the garage and light it up. It doesn't matter that one can go to the nearest convenience store and buy a pack, light up the first one, suck in the FIRST PUFF. What matters is recreating one's lifestyle mentality to the point where one become impervious to all of these options. I have become a NON-SMOKER, and there isn't a person, place, or thing that can take that away from me RIGHT NOW. How about that for self talk???
I always say, " I love you guys" and blessings to you all, because you have helped me save my life. God is always active in this transition, and I know it. So, thank you God, my dearest of life saving confidants, and anything that leads me or keeps me on this path to FREEDOM from SLAVERY and the death producing results from smoking cigarettes.
Blessings, and I love you all for loving me enough to care.
(Mavihoja) can I just drop the Mavihoja now, and be who I am, which is Michael Douglas Beatty, of Fountain Hills, Arizona? If you want to know the story of how I was to become Mavihoja, I will be glad to entertain you with it!
Tomorrow is 21 days since I became a 100% NON SMOKER!!! It’s a miracle...I’m having one of those days here at work where everyone thinks they should be more important than the other. You know the kind. Entitled is the word.
But I am remembering my many failures at hitting in the past . I didn’t adhere to the law of “no matter what”. I no longer smoke but once did. Now no matter what happens I’m still a non smoker who can get through Anything and still be a non smoker...
I told myself I was going to be 100% honest with this final quit. And, it's a bit lonely out there sometimes
when one doesn't have like a "sponsor" on which to dump. I must look at the facts, and I have not smoked for a longer period that I have managed to put together in 3 years. I made it 180 days 3 years ago, then unfortunately cobbed a bad attitude, went to a Circle K and bought 1 pack of American Spirit "Organic" lights. Had one, then 2, then decided to go back in and buy a bottle of wine. Wow, talk about flushing it all down the toilet!
You see, I know deep in my inner self that smoking was my first addition. Alcohol never was an addition with me, but the emotional twistedness that became intertwined AS A RESULT OF LOW SELF BELIEF AND SELF ESTEEM that cumulatively became real is now coming clearly to the surface. The whole 58 years I smoked I knew I was doing a WRONG thing. In my intelligent part of my brain, the conclusion can only be that this had taken a toll...a significant toll.
I promised myself that I would not whah-whah-whah like I did here a few years back. Please let me know if my thoughts are coming across that way. My observation at this time is that the reason all this stuff is coming up now is because my deepest more God loving, life supporting self knows that my DECISION to never ever take even one puff is serious and final. Hence, I don't feel the least bit sorry for myself. I did it, and now I get the consequences however they come to the surface. No smoking NO MATTER WHAT.
I am presently giving "an old college try" towards honoring whatever comes up as a result of now being a committed NON-SMOKER (became an ex!) and, oh how stuff is coming up!
Like letting my early maturation days happen being a smoker who knew he didn't want to be one. Or going about life's successes and failures knowing full well that I couldn't be good enough for clear and complete success.
If you're at all like me, there has always been this voice in my head saying..."You're weak, you just can't quite pull it off...You can't even quit smoking!!!
It hasn't always been this obvious. Many a day would go by just BEING a smoker and succeeding where I could, being a smoker. Now days, however, it is almost impossible to remain a smoker for me. Know one who I admire smokes, none of my mentors all throughout life smoked...and I mean NONE.
I feel like I am still convincing myself that this is real. You see, I have never been here before, felt this adamant or felt like there is no turning back.
Thanks for being there, and I just have to say that if I can do this thing, ANYONE CAN DO IT.
I smoked for 58 years, stopped once for 5 weeks back in 1977, stopped again in 2016 for 180 days. That's it. that's my story and I'm stickin to it!!!
My astonishment is overwhelming today. I now clearly see the difference between trying, trying, trying, and actually making the decision and be unwilling to reverse it. Once one walks through the door to BE a non-smoker, enjoy it, feed it, celebrate it, and see it as irreversible, the Light finally goes on.
My old friend and mentor Dale used to work with me (to a level of obvious frustration on his part) pointing out that I just hadn't made the decision yet. That was a few years ago. You see, one thing I had to realize was that every time I would light up a cigarette, I was feeding an inner personality characteristic that said to me, "This is okay, because eventually, I'll rebound and show em how easy it is for me to stop." I have had a voice inside my head telling me that innately I have an ability to grab ahold of myself when all the chips are down, and make a rebound, stand up, go to work, and create something that many others could only envy. Wow, how deceiving the ego can be.
So, I have become one of those who advocates that when we use the expression, "Made a decision", that is, in its strictest and absolutely simplest meaning, the turning point for all.
As some of you undoubtedly are acquainted with, there is another rule that always worked, and that is:
"Made a DECISION to turn our will and our lives over to God as we understood Him."
Its easier to just do it rather than over analyze it.
Well, I mentioned that I didn't feel like using as many words to express myself, now here I am again!
I just can't stop telling you folks how utterly grateful I am that you didn't give up on me. I can write over and over and over the same words, and they still need to be shouted from a mountaintop to others so they can witness this miracle. When I say my cloud has been lifted, it means so much to my whole life's unfolding that it is just too much for me to capture in one day. so, I get up the next day, don't smoke, and see newness that can only come from the veil continuing to reveal more and more. I have found a new life, and I will do anything to protect it. It's just that simple. Everything falls just a little more in place each day. I am so in love with this feeling that I am finally at a total loss of words...hence, I will stop using them right now!
Today, i am more enlightened about what is around the corner, namely, No Man's land...so, here are my stats to this minute, thanks to you wonderful folks, combined with the miracle that has happened to me...
Three weeks, four days, 16 hours, 58 minutes and 6 seconds. 771 cigarettes not smoked, saving $308.48. Life saved: 2 days, 16 hours, 15 minutes. I can never regain the time I've wasted on smoking, so I think what I'll do is just simply LIVE EACH NON-SMOKING DAY AS IF IT WERE MY LAST DAY ALIVE!!!
Hi Kids!!! I am so excited I can't hardly stand it! Yee Haw! On January 11, at 10 p.m. in a level of exaustion I can't remember since my own mother went to Heaven, I put them down forever, on day, or one hour, or on second at a time. The rush of intelligence , information, spirituality that has become my addiction of choice (God) is now as in control as I my hidden self will let Him. As you already know, when I drop my guard (hungry, angry, lonely, over-tired) the weaknes for maintaining MY QUIT just means I'm not honoring God's Leadership in my life and whatever He's got planned for me from that second on. The release of pent up low self esteem issues, is so noticeable that ever a blind squirrel couldn't avaoid seeing the Light shine on them! Interestingly enough, ya'all, my favorite verse in the Bible is John1 Verse 5, and has been for so many years I can't recall right now. So, I'm here, will stay here, help others, jibber jabber with my loving, caring dear folks that have been praying for me. As of this minute, it has been 76 hours 32 minutes since my last puff of darkness was expelled from my runners lungs. My pledge to God is that if He asks me to walk over hot coals to protect my quit, I will. If He asks me to stand in fire, I will. I am filled with the fervor of a cruisader, which is an expression I have used in my numerous training sessions, speeches, all the while waiting to go outside to grab a few puffs just to get me through the talk. What a B.S. er I have been. One of my many mentors over the years (and several pretty stout support types) have said over the years that I am about 97% where I need to be, but the remaining 3% pretty much clouds everything after it. I feel like an out of control pretender. But, I see the other side of this equasion so clearly now that I cannot feed that wolf anymore. The "Bread of Life" is alive and well within me now, and I will do whatever it takes to maintain it and feed it every minute, every hour, and every day. NOT ONE PUFF EVER!!!!!!! I LOVE YOU ALL!!!!!!!!