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....until you have a heart attack or stroke or get that ominous diagnosis of cancer or emphysema! If you haven't YET had a smoke related illness, do you have it firmly in your mind that you are playing Russian Roulette with every single puff??? I for one am not a gambler - I don't even buy lottery tickets - but I gambled away my LIFE until that unbelievable diagnosis COPD applied to ME! Be smarter than that! Not One Puff Ever just for today NO MATTER WHAT! 

On second thought since I really quit I found out that the title phrase is a Nico - Lie!!!

Quitting is less stressful than smoking!


Life Goes On!

Posted by Thomas3.20.2010 Jan 29, 2011

As some of you know I just got back from Mexico where we laid to rest my best friend and Godmother, Angela! In Mexico a funeral, like all celebrations doesn't last a day or two - it lasts for nine days of prayers and commissuration  that marks the beginning of a new time when our loved one is with the Lord and we must continue our journey here below! Each evening of prayer we share food and drink in memory of our loved one and a toast to the new generation of children who rise to face the challenges of their times! Along with that cup of Agave or Pulque (both very strong liquors) cigarettes are passed around in fellowship! You can imagine that in the past I smoked my share with relish, but this time I was equally glad to say, "No Thanks, I don't smoke!" especially because I could hear the numerous times my Godmother chided me for smoking! I only wish that I had listened to her sooner! No, I did not smoke as I stood with groups of friends smoking away like chimneys passing the time and filling our plates with food and our cups with beverage! I admit that I thought it would be nice to take a puff and that socially the pressure was great to participate in the smokefest, but I found out that I had passed beyond that addiction within me and no longer need to feed this monster! You see, with a true quit comes an introspection and maturation, not just a sense of deprivation and sacrifice! It is a time when you ask yourself that endless question, "Who am I?" and this time you have a deeper answer to that question. Now, I am stepping out of the old Thomas into a New ME who doesn't use addictive substances to mask unwanted feelings and reflections! This whole week has been a rollercoaster of emotions both bitter and sweet and the truth is - I wouldn't have missed any of it in the least! Between tears and smiles it was ALL GOOD and Life Goes On!


Did You Know.....?

Posted by Thomas3.20.2010 Jan 17, 2011



Smoking Damages DNA Within Minutes, Study Finds









Here’s some more incentive to quit smoking.


According to a study by U.S. scientists, all it takes is a few minutes – not years – of puffing on a cigarette to cause genetic damage linked to cancer, The Daily Mail reported.


"The effect is so fast that it's equivalent to injecting the substance directly into the bloodstream," the researchers said in findings described as a "stark warning" to the millions of people who smoke out there.


The lead researcher, Dr. Stephen Hecht from the University of Minnesota, and his colleagues followed 12 volunteers and tracked certain pollutants known as polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), which are a group of chemicals that are formed during the burning of coal, oil, gas, wood or other substances such as tobacco and charred meats.


Hecht zeroed-in on one pollutant in particular called phenanthrene, and found that it quickly formed a toxic substance in the blood that is known to “trash DNA, causing mutations that can cause cancer."


"The smokers developed maximum levels of the substance in a time frame that surprised even the researchers: just 15-30 minutes after the volunteers finished smoking," the study said. "These results are significant because PAH diol epoxides react readily with DNA, induce mutations, and are considered to be ultimate carcinogens of multiple PAH in cigarette smoke."


The study, which appears in the journal Chemical Research in Toxicology, was funded by the National Cancer Institute.


Read more:

[January 17, 2011]  


: Health Official: Electronic Cigarettes Not Proven To Be Safe


Jan 17, 2011 (M2 PRESSWIRE via COMTEX) -- The recent emergence of the electronic or e-cigarette on the market has caused local health officials to issue a warning to prospective users of this new product.

The Health Ministry has advised that the e-cigarette had not been tested to determine its long-term effects, and is therefore not recommending it as a replacement or additional smoking device, nor as a tool to stop smoking.

Recently, acting Senior Medical Officer of Health (Chronic Non-Communicable Diseases), Dr. Leslie Rollock, pointed out that the e-cigarette, on which a smoker puffs to release a vapour of stored liquid nicotine and other substances, like propylene glycol, had not been sufficiently tested to determine its effects.


300 Smoke FREE Days!

Posted by Thomas3.20.2010 Jan 14, 2011

The way you get to the First 100 is Tenacity:  Focus and Determination!

The way you get to the Second 100 is by Embracing Your Quit!

The way you get to the Third 100 is Never Ever Forget!

I don't know YET what comes next but I'm determined to find out!!!!

If I can then YOU CAN TOO!!!!



Posted by Thomas3.20.2010 Jan 11, 2011

Life as an Ex just gets BETTER and BETTER!!!! Really!

How Cool is THAT?!  Doris, You are FABULOUS! Thanks for being my quit buddy and friend! My turn is Friday!

100 X 3!!!!! Triple Triple Digits!!! 

Big Gentle HUGS!!!!

IT's been quoted by more than one person on this site that Dr. Hurt says it's O.K. to slip! Well, I KNOW from having seen people come and go here for nearly 10 months now that those who give themselves permission to slip have just reduced their chances of SUCCESS to almost nothing! 

We have a saying here that I have followed since I first joined because it makes perfect sense to me: Not One Puff Ever! N.O.P.E. Well, Ever is a pretty over whelming term for an addict, right? So if the NOPE- ers stopped right there I'd probably say forget it! You're dreaming! But there is a foreword: JUST FOR TODAY! Just for today I pledge N,O,P,E. and I RESPECT myself enough to HONOR that DECISION for 24 hours! Now, THAT is doable and happens to fit in with a philosophy for living of mine:Plan as if you'll live to be 100 and Live as if this is your last day! 

Live4theDash has added something to the equation which I also find VERY useful: N,E,F, Never Ever Forget! I use this term to remind me how much I hated smoking and how hard I worked to get here! It has helped me through many many rough spots! Yes, I've had my share of temptations! So I Thank him for this wise piece of advice!

Now, I'm not an expert on addiction but I know that I wouldn't tell an alcoholic that it's O.K. to drink once in a while or a heroin junkie that it's O.K. to shoot up now and then, so it just makes sense that it's NOT O.K. to slip EVER! And if somebody slips, they better be taking a good long hard look at their program, find the flaw and BEGIN AGAIN from square one! I'm not saying this out of criticism - I'm saying it out of true concern - because we all know that smoking is KILLING US! 

Well, if you're in that place where you know you''re in big trouble, which bit of advise do you want to hear? "It's O,K. to slip!" or "N.O.P.E. and N.E.F.!"???????

You decide!

As Tommy testifies repeatedly Collateral Kindness was the lifesaver that was thrown to him when he was literally drowning in his own fight - not to quit!!!! And it saved him! It saved me also when I was devastated to learn and understand that I have COPD and quitting is absolutely essential if you want to stop the progression of the disease! How many other LIVES have been saved by it? We'll never know but many, many for sure!  You see folks like Peggy and JonesCarp and Aztec extending it every single day. here!  Then came another layer of helpers like James, Kathy S, Dawn and Sootie, many of them!!! And then more folks like Moe, Bonnie, Yaya, Strudel, and recently Laurie! Today we see HealthyJayJo stepping up! More people joining in to help the next guy!

So why do they do it? Why do they take the time and energy to type their fingers away helping those who want to quit and convincing them that they can succeed! Well, saving lives is a heroic action, certainly! But that's just one side of the coin! Extending a hand to your fellow quitter makes your quit journey STRONGER! It demands that you clarify for yourself all of your reasons for quitting, to really THINK about what got you through this rough spot or that one, to appreciate daily the incredible journey that we have embarked on! You don't have to be a long termer to get these benefits - even if you just quit today you can get started helping others to help themselves AND helping yourself in the process! Share WHAT WORKS! Cheer the next guy or gal on! Become ENTHUSIASTIC about this journey that you've decided to take!!!! What a great way to crowd your mind so those addictive thoughts have no room! Best Wishes to ALL! You CAN do this! Will you be the next Tommy?


Just pop a pill!

Posted by Thomas3.20.2010 Jan 5, 2011

I teach conversational Spanish and English.  The whole time I've taught  ( 30 years) I've seen some students succeed in record time (1 year!)  and others wash out and I know the difference comes down to this:  You can come to me and pay exorbitant prices for private lessons and 6 months later not learn a thing IF you think I can magically bestow on you the ability to become bilingual; or you can pour yourself into it and come out pretty decent even in that short time if you truly want it bad enough and have  tenacity.  I can't MAKE you or your kid bilingual - won't happen!  I can give you what it takes so that you can become bilingual and have done it for 100s of people.  BTW if you know some magical pill that grants you this ability shhh!(I like my work!) 

I've seen the same thing here with some (not all) but some folks who think that buying NRTs is buying their quit!  Won't happen! Same principle!  NRTs are a tool to help you learn how to quit - they are NOT the "suffer - free" quit!  If you use NRTs to give you the space to figure out your quit - right on!  If you use NRTs so you don't have to feel the quit - guess what - it doesn't work that way and will never work!  To succeed you have to own your quit!,i.e. you have to decide to quit and do the work yourself with tenacity!  NRT does NOT equal short cut - no such thing!


Trying to Quit!

Posted by Thomas3.20.2010 Jan 3, 2011

If your trying to quit then you're already on the wrong track! You'll be amazed how changing your language can make all the difference! 


Smoking is not an option any more NO MATTER WHAT!

I DON'T Smoke Any More!!!!

There is no element of luck involved - I made a conscious DECISION to quit and I HONOR that DECISION!


No maybes, ifs, hopefullys, trying, sort of, well, if all goes well and I don't feel too stressed,,,,,

I have the Key - The KEY is ME! - I am more powerful than a dead leaf wrapped in paper and dipped in 400 poisons! HA! I refuse to let that darn thing control me even one more day! 



Posted by Thomas3.20.2010 Jan 3, 2011

That is for many of us our biggest fear and yes, another excuse to not even try but there is GREAT NEWS! The ability to succeed is within YOU! Yes, YOU have the POWER to break this Addiction right NOW! It is really very simple (I didn't say easy! Although you CAN make it relatively easy if you CHOOSE to!) I quit smoking after some 20 years off and on by using the N.O.P.E. pledge! I pledged this morning for the 289th day in a row that I CHOOSE not to Smoke even one little puff TODAY! I RESPECT myself enough to HONOR that Pledge - for Today! Tomorrow - I'll cross that bridge when I come to it! But TODAY is doable! And Yes, while I'm at it - I CHOOSE to enjoy my Smoke FREE Life!!!! I'm glad I'm giving my body a chance to HEAL but even more Proud that I'm giving MYSELF a chance to Live LIFE ABUNDANTLY - Addiction FREE - the way my Creator intends for me to LIVE! The REAL ME is no longer hiding under that Smoke Cloud!!! If I can SUCCEED then YOU CAN, TOO!!!!! You have the POWER TODAY!



Posted by Thomas3.20.2010 Jan 3, 2011

There are so many great new members who have finally made the CHOICE to stop smoking! :-} WELCOME! I hope you all take the time to put a bit of profile info on your page so we can get to know you and thus be better able to help you! Please everybody remember that when you type a message on your own message board, you're message will probably get lost because nobody can see you! You can message other members by clicking on their name or avatar! There are also a variety of groups that you can join for more specific needs, for instance I am a member of Living with COPD. You can join as many groups as you like! Please use the BLOGS as much as you feel like it - nobody here gets bored with the subject!!!!! Also, there's virtually always somebody around 24/7 and calls for help get very fast responses - so if you have the urge to slip or cheat - PLEASE BLOG about it First!!!! At least give yourself the chance to be talked out of it! Stay Positive not tentative and READ, READ, READ!!!

My name is Thomas and I have 289

 Smoke FREE Days ( that's more than 9 months, folks!) If I can do this You can too! I have not smoked 2890 cigs and guess what? I REALLY DON'T MISS IT ONE BIT! 

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