Well, looky here. Here I come, dragging my sorry a*s, whoops, I mean my sorry suitcase back to all my wonderful friends here on EX.
I thought I'd had a rough last twelve months (details unnecessary) and I allowed myself to drift further and further away from the amazing friends and unending support that helped me make one of the most important changes in my life that I could EVER have made.
My last blog was 76 days ago! And the longer I went without being here, the harder it got to think about coming back. No, I haven't smoked! Thank goodness, that is NOT one of the challenges I've faced these past months. But then, I finally logged on tonight and read and read and read and read and read and...oh, my stars! I've missed SO many challenges that the people I love here have faced and I feel like such a schmuck for not being here for you all. Ellen, I had NO idea about your house burning and losing your beloved kitties and all that you've gone through. Kathy, you lost your father and I never even knew! Nancy, here you are just one lousy hour away from me and I didn't know about your fall and your hip and your surgery! Dale, if I'd only logged on to EX and seen that you had to eat jello and deviled ham after the latest "burn", I'd have gotten myself a SAN layover and ridden the Coaster up to soothe your fevered brow for a few hours (and bring you ice cream!) And Tommy, I called you on my last Ft. Myers layover, but didn't really know the pain you were going through.
And there are SO many more people here who have supported me during MY illness, but where have I been for you guys? I'm so sorry and I hope I can sidle back into this amazing circle of people who support each other, not ONLY through quitting nicotine (and all that THAT entails!) but through the formation of amazing friendships and difficult times.
I want to say something important to all the new Quitters, who might read this blog and are saying "Who the heck is THIS person???". Who am I? I am just like YOU. I am nobody special. I happened to find EX while browsing one night back in August, 2012. I knew I needed to quit, but I didn't think I could. And I also will admit that I thought support groups were kinda corny. But something about this place really tapped into me. I stayed, I set a Quit Date, I did the reading, I blew the first day of my Quit, I quit again three days later, and I SUCCEEDED! I have not smoked since 11am on September 27, 2012. And I truly believe that I could not have not it without EX. Please go back and read some of my early blogs and see just how much the support and friendship here made a difference in my life.
As Tommy has said so many, many times: This is a place that runs on "Collateral Kindness". I got all involved in myself recently. I haven't been here to support new EXers and dear old friends. I'm sorry. But I'm here now. So get ready for some stupid blogs about biting lemons and smart turkeys, I guess... I love you guys!
(Gonna hit "publish" without re-reading since I'd probably decide this is stupid and not post it...)