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constanceclum Blog

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I forgot the struggle

Posted by constanceclum Apr 16, 2018

So it's day 1 again and I've had a difficult morning to say the least even with the patch and lozenges. It's easing up now after struggling for the past 4 hours. I actually got up at 5 for some unknown reason so I'm also feeling tired. Of course I'm still have this horrible cough and chest tightness so that's keeping me motivated and I've already been here twice today.


How is it possible, after doing this so many times, that I can forget how hard these initial days are?




Here it is

Posted by constanceclum Apr 15, 2018

My last day of smoking and I am more than ready for tomorrow! Thank God for this site. It definitely gives me the courage!




I love you guys!!!

Posted by constanceclum Apr 7, 2018

Thanks for all the great comments on my blog. When I said I was short on motivation, I didn't mean to quit smoking. I meant facing the first few days of cravings and figuring out what to do with myself when I'm not smoking. I fill a lot of time with smoking. I'm using this time to get excited about quitting and it's slowly working. Knowing you are all here for me and, well, all the newbies is hugely inspiring and I'm taking advantage of it.


The only results I hope to gain from exercise is that dopamine release. I've not only lost dopamine from smoking but I have bipolar depression as well. Plus it gives me something healthy to do.


Hope everyone is having a great day!




Motivation to quit

Posted by constanceclum Apr 6, 2018

Well I didn't quit after my surgery as I was only in the hospital for 2 day-right at the peak of craving and, of course, my husband smoked on the way home so I did too. Then 2 weeks stuck at home so I smoked even more than usual.


I have a new quit date of 4/16 and I have been having trouble with motivation-which is why I've waited so long to attempt this again. Coming here and reading blogs helps a lot. So good to see my old friends and all the newbies doing so well.


Since this lung surgery, my breathing has not come back to my normal (I had a wedge of lung removed so it might not come back to my normal especially as long as I smoke) and that's motivation as well. The nodule turned out to be a cyst so I feel truly blessed about that.


One thing I'm doing different is I joined Planet Fitness. That also motivates me as I'm anxious to see how much better I will do after I quit smoking. On days I don't go, I walk at home and do other exercises as well. I know the time is now. My son in NY is getting married in Sept. so I'm planning another trip and I will also see my granddaughter who will be a yr. old in Sept. How wonderful it will be to make that trip as a nonsmoker.


I hope all of you are doing well. I'm wondering how Thomas is doing?




So happy to be back!

Posted by constanceclum Mar 14, 2018

I've been really enjoying reading blogs and comments again! I REALLY enjoyed getting the huge welcome and all the thoughts and prayers and I'm so glad all my old friends are still here. 


I'll be back as soon as I am able-smoke free. Maybe this time I'll learn how to post pics.


Wishing everyone a great, smoke-free day!




Hi friends

Posted by constanceclum Mar 13, 2018

I haven't been here for awhile. I've been sort of planning to quit again since the Fall but just can't get the motivation or feel any excitement so it just hasn't happened.


Well I'm having surgery on Thurs. morning to remove a nodule on my lung. I will be in the hospital possibly up to a week so I'm looking at this as being a great time to quit.


There is absolutely nothing anymore that I enjoy about smoking except the relief it gives from that craving. I'm ready!



No I haven't smoked and I am feeling somewhat better today but I am looking back at the past yr. and my difficulty with smoking craves over the past couple of weeks. Over a yr. ago I started suffering with severe dry eye symptoms especially in my right eye. I would have never imagined how dry eyes could really ruin quality of life but spending most of the day feeling like you have sand in your eye and have been swimming for 12 hours in a pool with way too much chlorine in it can become very frustrating. About the same time, I started dealing with severe daily nausea and shortly after, constipation. Of course the ongoing visits with my pulmonologist for copd and twice/yr. ct scans for my nodule and a Psychiatrist too boot. I have insurance but I do not have money for the ongoing co-pays and I am very much financial debt. So than I had the 3 pneumonia's over the summer with the diagnosis of immune deficiency with, as far as I can tell at this point, the treatment costing $10,000/mo.. So, yes we all have everyday stressers as part of our everyday life but I have felt like my anxiety has been through the roof for a long time now and I believe that is what is causing my body and brain to have been screaming for nicotine.


Well things are starting to finally work out. My Dr. finally prescribed a medication for IBS that has greatly helped with nausea and, with some diet changes, the constipation has been relieved too. I mean is there anything worse?


My eye Dr. had inserted plugs which helped for a few weeks but after I had the cataract removed from my 1 eye in March, that eye got 20 times worse with dry eye symptoms. She told me about another procedure using amniotic membrane tissue which is very expensive. I did not believe I could afford it before my trip but I called her on Mon. to see if there was anything else. She had the desk set up an appt. for me and I went yesterday and she did the procedure telling me they would absorb the co-pay. 


I think once I know more about the immunodeficiency and if that treatment worked or whatever plan B is and finances for it and I feel like I'm back to just dealing with normal life issues, I'll have a better grip on this quitting not seeming so dang hard. After all, I'm already feeling a little better.


Sorry this is so long and for all the misspellings. I use to be a great speller but I'm spoiled now and sometimes too lazy to worry about correcting.


I wrote all this to see how other's experience being under extreme stress/discomfort/sickness/ pain during their early quits got through it. I mean my 1st mo. was fine but this 2nd mo.? Not so much.




I am losing it!!!

Posted by constanceclum Aug 30, 2017

I am at 51 DOF and 16 of the past 20 days have been like the 1st 3 days over and over. I had 2 comfortable days but the past 2 days have been horrible being fuzzy-headed, irritability off the chain and hands shaking so bad I can barely hold a fork. My mind and body is screaming for a cigarette. I went down to step 2 (14 or 15mg) patches I think about 10 days ago so I should be adjusted by now. Has anyone else gone through this experience of the 2nd mo. being harder than the 1st? This is why I relapsed at 8 weeks when I quit in the Spring and I know I don't want to do that but this is becoming unbearable.



So my 1st 2 weeks in NML were horrible. I was really afraid I wouldn't make it. Plus, at the same time, I cut down to the 2nd step with patches. Plus my anxiety level through the roof. Then the miracle! Yesterday and today I'm not craving.


Oh I know it isn't over. I'm only 6 weeks in so I'm still on 24 hour guard. But it's the easier days that gets us through the hard ones.


Don't stop short of the miracle!!!



I haven't learned what is causing this. This order is from my lung Dr. and when I asked she said she had no idea. I'm thinking that will come from my primary Dr. The infusion I had was ivig but will not know if it was beneficial until after labs are drawn on Mon. The only thing I am aware of is we need protein for our immune system and I think I've been lacking for a long time. I have never been a big meat eater and now most meats have become difficult to chew due to major dental problems which I can't afford to fix.


Thanks for all the encouraging comments on my last blog. Especially Thomas for changing my perception. This is my forever quit. I've got through a tough time without reaching for a cigarette and that has built my confidence. I also have to realize that I have dropped down to the 14 mg patch. I am doing better now (craves) than I have in several days.


And the best part? We are having beautiful weather in NC! That's a great attitude adjuster.




Who know that venting could save a life? My past relapses with alcohol and cigarettes were always about not having adequate coping mechanisms and when things would get tough, I would smoke (and drink). But I've never reached out when things did get tough-not even to my husband. He doesn't deal well with mental or physical issues when it comes to me. I learned very young not to bare your troubles. Well this time I did. Not only here but to my husband and anyone else willing to listen.I call what I went through last week my mini nervous breakdown. But guess what? I didn't smoke or drink. I read all of your comments and they got me through! I went for my antibody infusion and I'm feeling a little stronger but I won't know for sure how much it helped until after I have labs drawn on Mon.


What I'm not so thrilled about? NML.These chest feelings like I need nicotine because it really is my oxygen just won't go away. It's been 2 weeks now and until 2 more weeks is a very vulnerable time for me because I usually relapse between 6 and 8 weeks. I'v bound determined not to this time because I'm telling myself over and over to not stop just short of the miracle.


I'm hoping this blog makes sense because I got up at 4:30 and I'm tired!!!


Wishing you all a happy smoke-free day. Also hoping for good outcomes to all our Texas friends and family!





Posted by constanceclum Aug 23, 2017

Just want to let ya'll know I haven't smoked. I'm still highly anxious, I feel like I have been shaking inside from my head to toes with a horrific headache but I know smoking won't help. I think I'll feel better once tomorrow is over. I'm not nervous about the IV but I have to take a cab. My phone is still not working so I downloaded uber and I'm just nervous that something will mess up. We only have 1 car and Scott takes it to Charlotte to work every morning at 4a.m. It's almost impossible for him to get a day off without a 2 week notice. Usually I make it work because he gets home at 1:30 but they do not do these infusions in the afternoon.


I really appreciate all the support. I know it has kept me from smoking!






More to vent about

Posted by constanceclum Aug 22, 2017

I just want to get it all out. It's still extremely hot here in NC. I have a 200 foot gravel drive which is very difficult to walk on due to my weakness and balance issues. That is where my mailbox is and I do walk to it when I'm feeling up to it. Than I am at a hilly, curvy highway with no sidewalk and hardly any shoulder. The speed limit there is 45 so most people go 55. That is why I'm so looking forwar to pulm. rehab. I have done it before and it works well for me as far as strengthening and endurance go. I have never needed O2 while there or in the day time but I do use it at night.


My phone stopped working yesterday. If someone calls me, they can hear me. When I call out, they can't. I'm trying to figure out the best way to go because I'm saving pennies like crazy for my trip and all these co-pays for Drs are killing me. AND I'm getting zero support from my husband. He's never been good around illness but I've tried telling him that I'm at my breaking point now. I'm scared to wake up for fear of what new will go wrong. He is not helping me with this phone decision. I have wanted a new server anyway. AND my housemate is drinking again and he's the sloppy, falling-down kind of drunk that gets on my last nerve. Scott at least told him to stay away from both of us when he's drinking so we'll see how long that lasts.


Thanks so much for letting me vent some more. My anxiety level is off the chain but hopefully I'll be better tomorrow.




Not a good day

Posted by constanceclum Aug 22, 2017

Well I guess it's not that bad as I'm not smoking but I sure feel like I want to!. Yesterday I stepped down to 14mg patches. I also found out the reason for all these pneumonia's. My immune system is weak. I asked her how that could happen. I have always bragged that I have the immune system from HE double hockey sticks. From my earliest memories I had 1 fever 31 yrs. ago. That's all it was. A fever with aches/pains, chills and extremely tired. I didn't even go to a Dr. and it left as quickly as it came. My Dr. said she didn't know why it happened. I am going Thurs. for IV treatment and if it helps, (we'll do lab work after) I will continue with this IV therapy monthly. It's hard to stay motivated when it's 1 thing after another and that's how it's been since I quit drinking 15 mo. ago. Has anyone else experience a weak immune system or know anything about it like how I can help myself? I would greatly appreciate any help.


Thanks for letting me vent. I am very proud to have 43 DOF and don't plan on giving in. I have God and who needs cigs when you have him.


Love to all,



6 weeks ago today-

Posted by constanceclum Aug 20, 2017

I put out my last cigarette. I feel very good about that. This NML is for the birds but, still, some days are better than others. And it's not really bad for whole days-just portions. I know every week I get behind me, it will get better. I am actually really learning to live in today and not so much in past or future. Sometimes I can actually grasp that living in the moment.


My Dr. left a vm. last Thurs. My left lung still shows "pneumonia" but they don't think that's what it is. As soon as 1 area heals, another one starts. She did an immunoglobulin blood test last Tues. and her vm stated it was abnormal and she was ordering a new medication but she needed to talk to me. I tried to call on Fri. but she was busy and didn't call back so I've had to go all w/e worrying about this. All I know is I'm so weak and shaky as well as tired, I haven't left the house. I need to be well for this big trip I have coming up.


One thing I will say, all of this has put too much fear in me to smoke.