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An AHA moment

Posted by constanceclum Oct 29, 2019

Which might seem so simple to you. I have had a tougher time getting off the 7mg patch than I did stepping down from 21mg and 14 mg. Of course I'm also in NML. In my previous attempts to quit, when I relapsed, it was because the cravings were so harsh, and all my mind would think of, in BIG HUGE RED LETTERS, was SMOKE. Well I haven't had a cigarette in 3 months today, and what I'm realizing is I need nicotine which is just 1 of a thousand additives in tobacco. What a relief to know that all I have to do is put a 4 or 2mg nicotine lozenge in my mouth and it will calm the crave down. I took 1 yesterday and, if I feel Like I need to, I will take 1 today. A lozenge is so much better than a cigarette because all that's in it is nicotine. How many quits I ruined because my brain said "I need a cigarette" instead of I need nicotine.




90 DOF!!!

Posted by constanceclum Oct 27, 2019

That truly amazed me! Growing up with the attitude that, once you start smoking, you can never quit! That was a hard "nut to crack". Once something is firmly implanted from childhood, it's hard to "undo" that. But finally I was able too. It took many "failed" attempts, reading hundreds of blogs from  people just like me who had successfully quit. We have a concept in AA called "terminal uniqueness" that addicts have to squash before we can break the addiction.


2,709 cigarettes not smoked! $390.00 saved!


I have not had a difficult time (so far) in NML or stepping down from patches. The 1st 7 weeks were hard for me. But with God's strength and the help from all of you, I persevered. Then a few difficult (moderately) days as I stepped down with patches. Now I am off the patches as of yesterday so I expect I might have a day or two that aren't pleasant this week. And whatever NML wants to throw my way, if anything, then on to triple digits.


To the newcomer: I am 61, I had smoked for 48 yrs. 30-40 cigarettes/day, I have been through a massive amount of stress, I have bipolar depression/anxiety and have not been on medication for 5 months for reasons I won't go into here. There is no excuse to keep smoking. I am thoroughly convinced if I can do this, anyone can quit. SMOKING HELPS NOTHING!!! SMOKING KILLS AND SEVERELY IMPACTS THE QUALITY OF LIFE!!!





Hey Everybody!!!

Posted by constanceclum Oct 22, 2019

I'm still here and 85 DOF!!! I'm just way too busy, and I guess that's a good thing, but I haven't been able to get on here as often as I'd like. Don't get me wrong-I come here everyday and take the pledge and read as many blogs as I can, but I'm usually in a rush. I thought I would have so much EXtra time when I quit but other things are taking it's place.


I have horrible, chronic insomnia and sometimes I'm just too exhausted to blog. Also, most weekdays, I'm getting up at 3:30 to take Scott to Charlotte to work so I can have the car. Also,he hasn't got his cpap yet, so most times he needs me to drive him because he isn't safe. But if I haven't slept, then I'm not safe either. I've taken trazodone for many yrs for sleep, but I'm at the max. dose ant I think I've built up a tolerance too it. So I'm working with my Dr. for her to prescribe something else.


Finances are getting more and more difficult. Cars back in the transmission shop but is still under warranty but we're having to rent a car again, and the money I'm spending on that is the money I was going to use toward Scott's cpap. Scott's job is still taking $250.00 out of his checkes til we pay back the money they lent us for the original transmission overhaul. Thank God for my faith that he will make good out of bad. One thing for sure, we will get a 2nd used, cheap car so we won't have to rent cars in the future. But I do refuse to have a car payment.


So now for my quit journey. I am now on the 3rd step down patch-7 mg. Stepping down to the 14 mg patch in the past has always caused me to relapse. This time, I've only had 1 day that was a little difficult when I've stepped down. In fact just a few harsh cravings that I'm not even sure was from stepping down or NML. Anyway, next Sun. I will remove the patch for the last time, and I'm ecstatic about that!


I pray that God releases blessings for each and everyone of you and that all of you continue to stay smoke-free!





Posted by constanceclum Oct 13, 2019

My husband is finally getting help with his sleep apnea. It's been horrible watching him go through this. He has broken down a few times. Most times, he wakes up every few seconds to couple of minutes. There's those few occassions when he'll stay asleep for 20 minutes. Everyone wants to minimize this, but sleep deprivation like this is used as a torture technique on POW's. I've been getting up at 3:30 to take him to Charlotte to work and then pick him up at 1. 2 hours in the car each day. I can't believe how long he has had to wait for help, and the only reason he got in this soon is because I called the sleep clinic bawling my eyes out and told them, even with my nursing history, I have never seen anything so inhumane in my life. He falls asleep at work and he's fallen down. I'm so frustrated at this administration not doing anything and refusing to vote on bills to help people with healthcare.


Anyway, I fell apart a couple of weeks ago and told him I was moving to my son's in Tennessee. I was so sick of being so heartbroken over watching him suffer and struggle to breath while he was steady drinking, smoking pot and cigarettes. He's quit drinking and pot and smoking very minimally (5/day) but saying daily he hast to quit. I believe he will. It's like without the beer and pot in his system, he's realizing how sick he is with copd. So of course, I'm not leaving him. I really do love him! Once I realized he was spending over $400.00/mo on beer, pot and cigs, yet we can't afford his health insurance, and frankly, I'm sick of facing everything alone and keeping everything together while he's having a good old time getting high and not facing anything.


So it's working out for now. I hope we have his cpap by the end of the week. Please join me in prayer that he will be able to tolerate it. Many can't.




75 DOFe!!!

Posted by constanceclum Oct 12, 2019

2,263 cigarettes not smoked. $330.00 saved! I really don't want anyone to think I'm patting myself on the back, but I know, if I can do this with all the ongoing stress, depression and anxiety I've been through, and being 61 with a 48 yr. history of smoking, then ANYONE that truly wants it, can. I'm in my 2nd week of 14 mg step down patch so I'm having cravings again, but they're milder for the most part. I'm having a tougher morning (I'm also in NML) so I'm taking a nicotine lozenge for the 1st time since hell week, but I want everyone to know, since I've already experienced what true freedom feels like, I certainly will not give in now!




Doing Great

Posted by constanceclum Oct 4, 2019

24 hours on the 14mg patch, and I've just had a few minor craves. I was so worried about stepping down and here I am rockin' it lol!




step down patch

Posted by constanceclum Oct 3, 2019

I put on a 14 mg patch today. I started this quit without a plan for step down. I know I've relapsed twice on the 14 mg patch during the 2nd month and not ready for the cravings that came with it. I decided with this quit that I would stay on the21 mg through NML if necessary. Well I've reached that point where smoking is not on my mind most of the time, and I've been forgetting to put a new patch on frequently. When I realize that I forgot to put the patch on, I realize that I haven't had any worsening of craves. I forgot again this morning so I decided it's time to step down. I am 2 months and 4 days quit, and I'm feeling strong.


Thanks everyone for being part of this awesome journey with me!


God bless,



Sunday I celebrated 2 months of freedom!!! I'm really feeling good about my quit which this time is my forever quit! However life still has me running in circles! I started a little part-time job (20 hrs/week) to help pay for everything going on. So I worked last week from 5-9 p.m. and felt awful all week trying to adjust. I'm 61 and haven't worked for 10 yrs. I've always been a day shift person and go to sleep between 8 and 9. I'm also extremely tired a lot of the time and wonder if I need to be back on depression meds. My husbandd is still suffering from bad sleep apnea and it seems, insomnia. It's been 4 months since he has had a decent nights sleep. I can't for the life of me, understand why he is waiting 7 weeks til 10/31  for his consultation with a sleep specialist. Isn't that the arguement against universal healthcare? Anyway, it's really caught up with him, and he almost got in accident coming home from work on fri. because he fell asleep driving home from work. So I am now getting up at 4 a.m. to take him to work in Charlotte (30 minute drive each way) and picking him up at 1:00. I am not able to do that and work at night so I had to quit the job.


I think the worst part of all that I have gone through the past 4 months is realizing on a daily basis that I have 0 control over my life. And I'm wondering if that's a reason that I'm succeeding with this quit because that's 1 thing that I can control.


I also went to my lung dr. he said I might still have some cancer cells in this lung nodule because it did grow even though the PET scan didn't "light up". He presented me to the tumorboard. The surgeon doesn't want to operate because he believes this is the same nodule that he took out a yr. and 1/2 ago and that it has grown back. They don't want to do radiation without a firm cancer dx. because it will cause more damage to my already damaged lungs. So we will repeat the CT scan in Jan. and then he might send me to Duke which is about 3 hours away.


So life is not getting easier, and I feel like I might at any time break out in hysterical laughter, but I will not smoke!!