When I first came to EX, I got a lot of welcoming support and advice from people who had already quit.
I looked at the number of days, months, years that these wonderful warm people already had under their belts.
I thought, "They don't understand how I feel. It must have been so easy for them. But I'm different. Quitting is going to be SO much harder for me than it was for them. They don't GET me."
Now, here I am with 135 days under my own belt. It doesn't seem that long to me.
But I know it sure seems like a lot to someone who is on Day 1 or Day 4 or Day 9... And I absolutely know, for a fact, that some of the Newbies are thinking that I can't possibly understand them, because it must have been so easy for me, because it's going to be so much harder for you than it was for me, because I don't GET you.
Here's what I am inviting Newbies to do: Go to my page and read my blogs from the day I first discovered EX. Read how I was scared and unsure and didn't really want to quit. Read my blog on the day of my original Quit Date and how I screwed up. Read my blogs that detailed my struggles during the first few days. Read about biting lemons. Read how I craved and felt like a caged animal. Read all the support I got from the people here who had, yup, you guessed it, 50 days, 100 days, 300 days, one year, three years under their belts.
(And especially check out one of my early blogs about where did people EVER get the idea to inhale the smoke from dried leaves, or eat lobsters, oysters, snails and balut? Yeah, google "balut". Incredibly gross. Yikes. I was feeling particularly creative that night I guess...)
My point is this, dear Newbies: All of us who have quit smoking have been EXACTLY where you are right now. We haven't forgotten what Day 3 or Day 9 or Day 17 feels like. Don't write us off because we quit before you. We DO "get" you.
There will be Newbies that come AFTER you. And they will need your help, your support, your advice and your understanding. They will admire you and be envious of you. And they will say, "You don't understand how I feel. It must have been so easy for you. But I'm different. Quitting is going to be so much harder for me that it was for you. You don't GET me."
And it will be time for you to pass on the golden experiences you have had and the strength you have derived from those who came before you here on becomeanex.org. What a wonderful feeling that is...
To everyone who has watched me quit and to everyone to whom something I've said has made a small difference: I wouldn't be here today, nicotine-free, without ALL of you. I'm so grateful. I will be alive longer because of all of you. Is there any better gift you can give to someone?