Most of my blogs as of late have been about the time that I first decided to quit. Now I thought I’d move on to the actual quit, and a vision that helped me along the way. Quite often, I mention the mountain and I’ve found that many find my vision useful, so once again let’s visit the mountain.
When I first quit smoking, I realized that I was a very visual person, or rather that I used visualisation to help me to deal with the realities of my quit. I created Mt. Freedom as a means of understanding what was happening to me or more importantly, to help to keep me focused on the task at hand which was never, ever smoking again. But first, like all of us, I had to get through the actual quit.
I above all else dreamed of being free from my addiction and I knew it was going to be hard. And so I saw myself standing at the base of Mt. Freedom and realized that this was a rather formidable mountain. I looked up at the tiny summit and dreamed of climbing all the way to the top, longing to be there, for I knew if I could just make this one climb, I would truly be free.
The day I put out my first cigarette was the first day that I stepped on the slopes of Mt. Freedom. I stood at the base and stared up at that tiny summit, vowing to one day be standing there. And I took the first shaky step upward. I trudged along that first day, fully aware that I couldn’t slip down the slope, lest I have to walk the path again.
It reminded me that now, on the first day of my quit I had to be careful if I was going to make it to the top. In life, I looked for things that might cause that slip and soon, I had finished the first day. The next day, I had a beginning to work with and I carefully climbed upward, still seeking that summit no matter how hard it was to get there.
I could see the slopes more clearly now. There were snow fields and boulder fields up there, things to watch out for, but it never deterred me and soon I was on day three. Carefully on that day, I climbed upward, never believing that I wouldn’t reach the summit.
Soon, I’d been climbing for a week and I dared to look behind me! There I saw that the beginning of my journey was a little ways below me now. Sure, the summit still seemed so far away, and yet when I looked below me, it seemed that I had come so far! This gave me confidence and I noticed that my footing had become much more stable on this journey to freedom. I was learning that with each step, I was closer to that wonderful summit that I desired to see so badly.
Time always passes. All we have to do is live that time and remember what we want to do with our futures. By the time I’d climbed for two weeks, I knew I’d learned so much! That the only thing that could now stop me was my own fear. And there was no way I was going to let that happen!
A month later, and I could see the summit so much more clearly. This was when I first noticed that there was a banner up there, blowing in the wind. I wanted to hold that banner! To take it and wave it proudly over my head! Believing in that summit brought me strength and hope. I really was going to reach that goal of freedom!!
I got past the slippery snow fields. I found that I was at last in the boulder fields, but I didn’t care because I was ready. I saw that banner waving in the wind on that mountain so much more clearly now and I could see what it said. It said freedom!!!
I climbed Mt Freedom for a good six months before I reached that wonderful summit that I so longed to see. And yes, I grabbed that banner and waved it high above my head!! I was so happy because at last, I was free!!
I still wave that banner of freedom proudly over my head, and I always will for you see, once one reaches the summit. Once a person knows that the future is going to be as bright as they hoped it would be. Once a person finds the peace that is awaiting on the other side of addiction, there can be nothing more powerful or more meaningful.
I see so many on the slopes of Mt. Freedom, clawing upward and always looking to that summit. Always believing that one day they can be standing there, and I long to see every one of you there. I long to see all of you holding that banner of freedom and with a smile, waving it high over your heads for I know how it feels. I know that it’s worth every step on the journey. I know what it feels like to be free.
And every time I see another reach that summit, it brings me as much joy as when I too reached it. Go for it! Take that first uncertain step on to that wonderful mountain. There’s so much waiting for you at the summit. I can’t wait to see you there!
ONWARD TO FREEDOM MY FRIENDS!
ONWARD TO FREEDOM!!!!