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2016

Even though I have had some rough times (not often) with urges the quit has been much easier than my past attemts and I do think it's all about acceptance. When I was in denial about how serious and progressive my copd was, quitting seemed like a choice and it was really tough. I would tell myself when I caved that I could always quit at a later time. Getting as sick as I did and it hit that it really wasn't a choice and I would not live long without making changes I finally accepted that I had to do this and most of the time it really hasn't been difficult.

Keeping expectations low and acceptance high has made me a much happier person as well.

Connie

constanceclum

21 DOF

Posted by constanceclum Oct 31, 2016

3 weeks and I am thrilled, physically I am comfortable most of the time, but I will be so glad when they stop taking up so much brain space. The important thing is I know I will over time so I will not give in over them. It's a process and since I smoked for 45 yrs, that's is to be expected.

When I get on here and read the other newbies sharing their experiences, it is so helpful. I know I'm not alone in the struggle. Not to downplay the elders who are such a Godsend with their experience, strength and hope. I couldn't do this without you guys-all of you.

Connie

constanceclum

Hey everybody

Posted by constanceclum Oct 28, 2016

Just want to check in and let ya'll know I have another day won. Some people quit smart turkey and some think, in the long run, that is easier. Some of us believe that we have a better chance with NRT's or medication. The important thing is to have a weaning off plan. Next week I will start on 14 mg. nicotine patch for 2 weeks then 7 mg. patch. I will probably use lozenges (2mg) throughout NML. My top priority is to not inhale smoke. I have found this method to be quite comfortable and is recommended by quitline and smoking cessation classes as well as my Drs.

Of course I give so much credit to this site. Without it I don't have any support and all the experts recognize how important that is.

I think the hardest obstacle is to learn how to live life on life's terms without smoking and I will use any method possible until I am able to do that.

Connie 18 DOF

That is my worse time. I always needed several cigs after waking up to get those nic. levels caught up. Now I put on a patch and use a lozenge while waiting for the patch to start working. That's when I'm still kind of foggy headed and wanting to smoke more. It's still very doable and stay vigilant as Marilyn would say but I'll be happy to get enough time behind me where I'm not thinking so much about it with that morning coffee. Instead I get on here and fb which strengthens (EX) or distracts me (fb).

 Thomas came up with hope week for this 3rd week of not smoking. I wonder if he has an "h" word for the 4th week. If not I'm thinking of health week. By this time we can start thinking of other ways to improve our health. Exercize and nutrition are good ones. I know I did eliminate things with sugar but picked it back up with quitting smoking. I have gained 2#. So I can do that again. In his blog he mentioned pneumonia and flu shots. I have worked for places that gave flu shots for free. I think we all have areas that we can improve for our health and the 4th week of giving up cigs seems like a great place to start thinking and planning for it.

Quitting alcohol doesn't count. That has to be done before day 1.

Connie

constanceclum

Entered 3rd week

Posted by constanceclum Oct 26, 2016

Thomas said I am now in "hope week" I love that! Even the rougher moments of not smoking are so much easier that smoking during a copd flare-up. Hopefully I will never forget that, at least not until smoking is but a distant memory.

I wasn't able to get on here yesterday. I was in Charlotte most of the day and then an apt. with my pulmonologist. He presented my case to a "committee" It is decided that I will have a repeat CT scan in 6mo. to see if my nodule has grown. The scans I had at the beginning of the mo. showed a little growth but does not appear to be cancerous. I am not a candidate for a lobectomy which would be the chosen method for getting rid of it but there was a surgeon at the meeting that said he would feel comfortable doing a "wedge" surgery which would just take the nodule out and they could biopsy it. They can't do a biopsy on it in my lung because of where it's located. If it shows malignancy, they would do some radiation. Anyway for the next 6 mo., I am turning it over to God. That gives me more time to strengthen myself with pulmonary rehab. and 6 mo. of being smoke free.

Just wanted to give an update on where I'm at healthwise and to tell newcomers that you don't have to wait til you have my problems (I also have advanced copd) to quit. I certainly wish I had never started this dreadful addiction or that I had quit prior to having these health issues.

Connie

constanceclum

14 DOF

Posted by constanceclum Oct 24, 2016

Two weeks!!! That is amazing to me. Today for some reason seems a little tougher but it's okay. I'm prepared for them and I will not smoke. Too many reasons not to and 0 reasons to do it.

I could cover my body in nicotine patches and would still not be able to do this without EX.

Connie

I just took the daily pledge. That means everything to me because it keeps me accountable to the persons hand I took and the one I extended my other one to. I don't want to be the one that breaks the chain!

All is quiet at the home front today which makes it a good Sunday. Later I will meet with an AA sponsee and then go to a meeting. Today I will flit from one thing to another in a relaxing sort of way. No pressure is what I mean.

Not feeling so chatty now but I do hope and pray that all of you have a great and smoke-free day.

Connie

For one thing I haven't felt like killing people. I think of smoking the same way I do alcohol. Things that make my life unmanagable but I don't do anymore. Acceptance. They just aren't a part of my life today. It is weird but I just don't have the obsession anymore.

I've heard many people in AA say they used the same principals to quit smoking that they did to quit drinking, primarily the steps. I have grown so much spiritually in AA that I think that is what is helping me. I'm not fighting or struggling. I see myself as a nonsmoker. I'm not envious of people I see smoking. I simply feel sorry that they are locked in this hell of active addiction. Don't get me wrong, there is still that rare occassion when the lie comes in my head that a cig. would taste good. It is not overwhelming and I simply place it on the back burner of my brain until it passes.

Am I in danger of becoming complacent? I think as long as I keep close to you guys and be very cautious in NML, I will be safe. I do not smoke so it is not an option. 

Whatever it is I will take it 1 day at a time

Connie

constanceclum

Staying busy

Posted by constanceclum Oct 21, 2016

I didn't even get a chance to get on here yesterday. I was gone from 3:00 am until after 5:00 pm. Then it was dinner and I collapsed into bed. I will admit that I barely even thought of smoking though.

Slept a little better but still woke up frequently and I do feel exhausted from yesterdays schedule. At least I don't have a job to worry about so I can take it easy today. I miss smoking more on these days but I have plenty to do around here and not smoking seems really doable. I know people that are early in there quits can have sleep issues and it will get better so I will not quit on my quit over this.

All in all this quit has seemed much easier than my previous attempts. I am seeing that so much really does have to do with attitude. I have finally accepted that for me I can either choose to to smoke and feel like crap all the time or not smoke and feel pretty decent even with the fatigue. This seems to make my choice a no brainer. For people who are quitting but do not have a serious lung (or other) diagnosis, if you quit on your quit telling yourself "it won't happen to you" or "I still have plenty of time", you are probably in denial. Smoking is never a good health choice and it never gets easier to quit. There is never a "right time" to quit except now.

I hope all my friends here have a great weekend and keep that smoke out of your face!

Connie

11 DOF

constanceclum

Got busy

Posted by constanceclum Oct 19, 2016

I started switching out more summer clothes to fall/winter and found a tee shirt  I almost forgot about. It says "Don't ever quit" and since it's 86 degrees here in NC, I decided to wear it and remind myself if the demon tries to tempt me. Also seeing my therapist this afternoon. I feel safer somehow when I'm doing other productive things as well as getting on here.

Connie

constanceclum

sore today

Posted by constanceclum Oct 19, 2016

from working out yesterday. I'll probably have to not use weights tomorrow.

Reading about quits going flats and a few blogs about not really remembering when people stop thinking of cigs at every glich. I can't wait to reach that point. I feel physically fairly comfortable but hate the obsessive thoughts. All I know is it is day 10 and I will not quit on my quit.

Connie

constanceclum

another long day

Posted by constanceclum Oct 18, 2016

I'm really seeing some poitive results from pulmonary rehab, my strength and endurance are getting better as well as my breathing. I think as I'm feeling better but tired from little sleep my urge to light up is also stronger today. Luckily it's in spurts that I know will pass and I have no intention of quitting on my quit but these blogs today have really helped me get through a rough patch.

Now I need to get up and get busy because that's really what works best for me. Hope everyone is having a good, easy smoke-free day!

Connie

constanceclum

1 week of freedom

Posted by constanceclum Oct 17, 2016

It's a huge milestone for me even though I know I'm not out of the woods and won't be for quit some time. I'm aware of NML and it has got me before. However I never want to forget how sick cigarettes made over the past month.

I am feeling better and have a little more energy. I am keeping my guard up as well. Starting to feel better can be a tricky time but I'm bound and determined to graduate from pulmonary rehab and I also know what a complete waste of time and money that is if I am smoking.

I love having the support and encouragement of this site. It's unbelievable how helpful just a few words from someone's blog or comment can be.

Connie

constanceclum

day 7

Posted by constanceclum Oct 16, 2016

It is amazing to me that this week has gone so fast. We all know that as we age, time speeds by but it seems a good thing while we are quitting.

Yesterday was slightly rougher now today seems easier. That's what makes quitting doable. During the rough times we can tell ourselves that soon it will be easier and we will feel grateful that we didn't give in. I pray that I keep feeling this way but today I won't smoke. I heard someone say in an AA meeting that today he will stay sober, tomorrow he will get drunk but not today. Then when he wakes up tomorrow, it is today again and the process starts over. Sounds like a doable concept.

I still have chest tightness with occasions of shortness of breath even while at rest. As long as I feel like this, I don't want to smoke. God doing for me what I can't do for myself but I do hope it gets better over time.

I can't imagine having a successful quit without this site. I recommend it whenever I talk to anyone that says they want to quit but I've never seen anyone take advantage of it. Maybe they are not really wanting to quit yet.

Hoping everyone has a wonderful Sunday!

Connie

constanceclum

Good morning all!!

Posted by constanceclum Oct 15, 2016

Day 5 won and I continue to feel better with not smoking and rest. I have to ask God how many more quits to I have in me before even that won't help. I can't kkeep playing Russian Roulette with not only my life but the quality of my life. This has to be my forever quit but I have to do it 1 day or even 1 minute at a time.

My short-term goal is to make it through tomorrow. At bedtime tomorrow night I will have 1 week won. This sounds very doable and 1 week is a huge milestone. How do I accomplish this. #1 has to be staying close to this site with #2 being N.O.P.E. Also a lot of prayer thrown in.

Mornings are always hardest but after about 1-2 more hours, the strong craves really eases up so I'm grateful for that. Triggers are managed by changing up my routine. I am dependent on patches and lozenges right now but I am ok with that until I learn to get through the days without my crutch. I do have a weaning off plan but if it takes me 6 mo. to completely get off everything, I'm ok with that. It's better than inhaling the poison into my lungs.

Take care everyone and have an EXcellent day!

Connie

constanceclum

Good late morning EX

Posted by constanceclum Oct 14, 2016

I literally slept for 12 hours last night. Not exactly straight through but I feel "caught up" on rest. Nothing better!

This is day 5 for me. I have never reached day 5 "so quickly"before. In 2 days I will be on 1 week. That seems amazing to me. I am only looking at this "one day at a time" but I think I am finally accepted that there will never be that feeling of "enjoying" a cigarette again. I had to reach that point with drinking before I could let that go 100% as well. I still have chest tightness and I hope I have it until I am through NML because it reminds me that smoking will only make it worse.

I'll check back in later to read blogs. Know I think of all of you throughout the day. You guys (and ladies) have become so important to me. You have become like family throughout these yrs.

Connie

constanceclum

WOW!!!-1

Posted by constanceclum Oct 13, 2016

3 DOF already! I have been so busy I really haven't thought much about smoking! It might be a little tougher the next few days when I have more down time but knowing I'll have 4 DOF will help.

Getting on here daily and reading blogs is the best thing I can do to get through this first few weeks. Some of you have got through the initial weeks and you are such inspirations as well as all the wisdome from the elders.

I am also physically feeling much better and already increasing time and resistance at pulmonary rehab. I'm not even feeling the need to use my nebulizer and use the rescue inhaler very seldom. I know My lungs will only improve so much and I will always have to be EXtra vigilant about taking care of myself and avoiding infections. That's ok. I am so grateful that today I feel like I have quality to my life and I look forward to that for a long time. Maybe that's a little too hopeful but that's how I choose to be.

Connie

constanceclum

WOW!!!

Posted by constanceclum Oct 13, 2016

3 DOF already! I have been so busy I really haven't thought much about smoking! It might be a little tougher the next few days when I have more down time but knowing I'll have 4 DOF will help.

Getting on here daily and reading blogs is the best thing I can do to get through this first few weeks. Some of you have got through the initial weeks and you are such inspirations as well as all the wisdome from the elders.

I am also physically feeling much better and already increasing time and resistance at pulmonary rehab. I'm not even feeling the need to use my nebulizer and use the rescue inhaler very seldom. I know My lungs will only improve so much and I will always have to be EXtra vigilant about taking care of myself and avoiding infections. That's ok. I am so grateful that today I feel like I have quality to my life and I look forward to that for a long time. Maybe that's a little too hopeful but that's how I choose to be.

Connie

constanceclum

Yea!!! sleep

Posted by constanceclum Oct 12, 2016

Feels so much better on day 3 with some good rest behind me. I mean the first few hours after waking are my toughest times to not smoke but I don't have any available and no car to go get any as well as the commitment of N.O.P.E.

I'm going to a noon AA meeting, then laundrymat and grocery store so I'll be busy most of the afternoon. Plus early to bed as I'll be back up at 3:00am for pulm. rehab tomorrow. Any down time and I will be back here reading blogs or crocheting. That's the plan for this 3rd day.

Chest and breathing are very slowly starting to get a little better but I know if I was to smoke at all, I would be right back to feeling like I have the elephant sitting on my chest and that's a horrible feeling.

I am hoping and praying that everyone here has a smooth smoke free day!!!

Connie

constanceclum

Day 2

Posted by constanceclum Oct 11, 2016

Back to Charlotte early this a.m. for pulmonary rehab. My O2 sats were up a little from 93%-95% and I handled the 1st day orientation goals well (excersize) even though I'm still pretty short of breath with chest tightness.

It's a long day for me in Charlotte, somewhat tortuous without smoking as I have a lot of down time. I did make the morning AA meeting, bring books as well as crocheting to keep me busy. Thurs. I plan to do some shopping while I'm there so I'm looking forward to that.

My biggest complaint is this exhaustion from sleep deprivation. I'm really starting to question all those people that say lack of sleep never killed anyone. Anyway I see my psychiatrist on Thurs. afternoon so hopefully she'll be able to offer some help.

I'm so happy to have this place to come to to read blogs and share the discomfort of withdrawals knowing that everyone else here understands.

Connie

constanceclum

Making it!!!

Posted by constanceclum Oct 10, 2016

Started feeling better after a shower and a little housework. Shortly I will be meeting with an AA sponsee who, thankfully, doesn't smoke. Then home to cook dinner and get ready for tomorrow. Up at 3:00 for pulmonary rehab.

Looking forward to my new life! I do have a call in to my pulmonologist about being on this clonidine to see if there is anything that can be done as I'm still not breathing well. I am ready to be off this prednisone though so hopefully not that.

Hoping everyone is having a great day!!!

Connie

constanceclum

1st day

Posted by constanceclum Oct 10, 2016

Exhausted with a headache and stomache is torn up. Another 1st day of nicotine withdrawal. I will not smoke today, no giving in to this. I will try my best to just stay busy but will probably be doing a lot of running around in circles.

I have been blogging about how hard it has been getting over this copd flare-up in spite of increased prednisone. Haven't slept well in 2 weeks. Took a look at the clonidine my psychiatrist prescribed to help with smoking cessation. It actually causes breathing problems and sleeping problems. I usually stay on top of the prescriptions I get but I didn't with this one. Of course I have stopped taking it.

I'm sure I will be back later. N.O.P.E.

Connie

constanceclum

last day in prison

Posted by constanceclum Oct 9, 2016

Tomorrow is the big day. I am so relieved to start feeling better. I have been sick with this copd flare-up for a mo. yet I have continued feeding this addiction. How much of an idiot can I possibly be?

This is not my first time using this site to quit. Last yr. I quit for 2 mo. I have actually used this site for a couple of yrs. to quit a few times but I would use every lame excuse to go back to the easier softer way of smoking. And my health has continued to deteriorate. The majority of time of not smoking I would be amazed at how doable it really was. Then 1 stressful event or some little thing not going my way and like a 2 yr. old having a temper tantrum, I would turn back to that evil so called friend that has never done a damned thing for me.

Not this time you evil little demon!!!! You are not stealing 1 more minute of my life or doing everything you can to destroy the quality I still have. You are like the ex-husband that when it's done it's 100% done.

Good riddance!

Connie

constanceclum

so many motivators

Posted by constanceclum Oct 7, 2016

and feeling like crap on a daily basis is certainly the best one! Even with all the prednisone and nebulizer treatments, it is obvious this flare-up is not going away until I stop inhaling the nasty things. On top of very little sleep I am very weak and not smoking. Just taking a shower is difficult.

Mon. is the big day and I will be off steroids after Tues. Hoping I won't need the nebulizer. Early in Sept., when I didn't smoke for 2 weeks, I barely used my rescue inhaler at all. I can't wait to get back to that point!

I know I can do this with the help of all of you and this site! I am already daily telling myself that, no matter what, I will not and cannot, give in to smoking. There is no denial. It is killing me and I want to live longer with the best quality of life I can! 

I hope that all the newer people using this site realize, you don't have to get as sick as I have. Quit as soon as you can. I am only 58 and this has become beyond ridiculous. I don't care what excuses we use to smoke, it is not worth it!!!

Connie

constanceclum

Lovin' EX!!!

Posted by constanceclum Oct 6, 2016

Thanks so much for all the wonderful comments on my blog. I am so glad to have all of you and thise site to help me with this disasterous ugly habit!!

Got up bright and early (3:00 am) to go into Charlotte with Scott for pulmonary rehab this morning. This after 8 days of not sleeping well, I think because of the high doses of prednisone I've been taken. I'm down to 20mg/day now and am just praying for sleep tonight. Anyway, I am so excited to be able to go back to rehab. All my girls are still there and they were so supportive last yr. when I quit for 2 mo. I also improved so much and felt so much better.

It's a long day for me. I am going to an early morning AA meeting prior to rehab and it's good to see those old friends too. I bring a lot of reading material and crocheting, my new hobby to replace smoking.

Closing for now, brains not working but I am sticking close.

Connie

constanceclum

Succeeding this time

Posted by constanceclum Oct 5, 2016

I, at this point, don't expect a huge welcome back party but I will not quit trying. I know my only chance of success is this site.

I have been getting on here daily and reading blogs. I started a smoking cessation class last night but it seems pretty lame. Maybe a waste of $20.00. I'm also starting pulmonary rehab on Thurs. I'm just getting over a pretty bad copd flare-up and the steroids (highest amount I've ever been on) are making it very hard for me to sleep. All in all, feeling pretty crappy the past couple of weeks.

My quit date is Mon. 10/10. I'll still use the patch but since huge aggitation got me last time, my psychiatrist gave me some clonidine to help with that. Agitation comes also with bipolar and clonidine isn't a antianxiety agent but does help with that. There is some debate after studies that it may actually help with smoking cessation.

I'm really happy and excited to be back. Still no alchohol. That is going great.

Connie