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2017
Chuck_Quit_2-20-2011

Update

Posted by Chuck_Quit_2-20-2011 Apr 30, 2017

 I know I haven’t updated in awhile, but I was getting tired after a few nights of thinking I was sleeping and then in the mornings, realizing that I must not have. But all in all, the worst of the pain is over for Chris and she’s slowly doing better with each passing day.

 

I did heed your comments about taking care of myself through this, and did alright. Thanks for the reminders though!

 

I changed her dressing yesterday and was amazed that there was no swelling. I wasn’t sure what to expect when I pulled off those dressings, but having recently done hospice for someone, I was ready. Plus I still had a lot of supplies from those days that are becoming useful now.

 

She has an appointment on Thursday where hopefully the staples will be removed and dissolvable stitches will be put in place, so long as things are looking good.

 

Thank you all for the thoughts and prayers. I’ve always believed that the power of the many almost always creates positive results in the end. I think she’s doing well enough that I’ll be able to work come Monday, once we get our new morning routine figured out.

 

Well, I’m off to help her shower. Everything is new experiences this week, though I know that what is at one time new becomes normal after experience.

 

Thanks again, my friends!

 

ONWARD TO FREEDOM!!!

Chuck

Chuck_Quit_2-20-2011

Compassion

Posted by Chuck_Quit_2-20-2011 Apr 28, 2017

As I sit here next to my wife, watching her start the beginning of what will probably be a long journey, the compassion flows from me. The desire to help her to get better. To feel better. To become herself once again.

 

And in this moment of compassion, I realize why I come here to try and offer a little help to others who I know are in various stages of a long journey, filled with unknowns and in a lot of cases fear of that unknown.

 

Whenever we do something new in our lives, we seek out those who have been there. The ones with the experience we need to make it a little more normal when we choose to step on the path of freedom. We look for some clue of what it will be like on a journey that is both confusing and at times one that we’re torn about doing. For that one piece of knowledge that we can grasp onto and hold tightly onto, until we’re through the worst of it.

 

But I also remember when I was just beginning my journey. It’s a part of my life that I’ve reflected over countless times, perhaps in the hopes of understanding my own addiction. Of understanding what it took to get where I am now, living a life of freedom and peace. A life without slavery to myself. A life that I created a little over six years ago when I happily put out that last cigarette.

 

I remember being well prepped. My plan was in place and ready to go the moment I put out that last cigarette. Was I apprehensive? Of course I was. I put it out in the evening and knew that the next morning, I’d be seeing a different world. And so the next morning, as I stepped onto the path of freedom, I put on my first patch and walked to the computer, looking for the compassion of others to help me to understand this new world I had just entered.

 

And I was greeted with incredible support and compassion from those who had been where I was right now. I soaked up the knowledge like a sponge, knowing that not all things mentioned would happen to me, but being prepared for anything.

 

My world became more normal the moment I logged on for you see, I now understood that the world hadn’t changed at all. It was me that had changed! And I was instantly proud of that change even as the voices of the addict within started to at first whisper to me and then scream at me!

 

I always strive to remember the hard moments of my quit in the hopes that I might have a little piece of knowledge to share that might make the difference for another. And to always remember the compassion that was shared with me when I needed it most by all the wonderful people that were at EX.

 

And now that it was a time in my life that I needed a little lift from those that I’ve fought with, I find that the compassion still flows through this wonderful place. That there is no distance when it comes to the heart and soul and as such, everyone is with me every step of the way, even as they were when I quit.

 

This really is a magical place, filled with a kind of unity that can only come from warriors who have fought an unseen enemy together and shared a time both of joy and hardship with those who seek a moment of clarity at times when clarity is just so hard to see.

 

For this, I’m thankful and proud to be a part of such an incredible group who together strives to find peace for any that seek it. And in peace comes a new life of freedom and a happiness that might never be there were it not for all of us working together for the common goal of life!

 

ONWARD TO FREEDOM!!!

 

Chuck

Movie

Posted by Rob1974 Apr 28, 2017

I went to a movie at the theater. Laughed and laughed. When I came out I hurried past the smokers b/c they smelled bad. I felt like i conquered another little mountain since I had no desire to smoke.

I hope all of you have a great weekend!

sophia-22

A Good Belly Laugh

Posted by sophia-22 Apr 27, 2017

Hi,

 

I have another positive to add to the list of being an ex-smoker.I was watching one of my favorite shows "Impractical Jokers" and they did something so hilarious that I laughed so hard you know those good belly laughs and I didn't keel over coughing my brains out like I usually did when I smoked.  I even have a cold and it's not as bad as it used to be when I smoked 2 packs a day. It's the second day of my cold and I feel like I'm getting better, before I quit this cold would last two weeks.

 

Hooray I QUIT!!!

 

Don't give away your quit it is precious, hold onto to it tight! It'll just keep getting better and better.

Chuck_Quit_2-20-2011

Update

Posted by Chuck_Quit_2-20-2011 Apr 27, 2017

Chris and I got through the night, though it was kind of a long one. For one thing, she’s having a hard time keeping her pain pills down, because of nausea, even though she’s eating before the pills. Right now, our main focus is on her getting two pills down every four hours.

 

She’s of course having a hard time sleeping because of the wonderful position she must sleep in. It’s kind of funny, but they want ice on the surgical area 24/7, and yet there’s a bandage over the surgery site that’s so thick that she get’s no benefit from the ice.

 

Tomorrow, I’ll be removing the bandages and if all looks good, replacing them with band aides and then the hope is that she’ll get some relief from the ice actually doing it’s job.

 

All in all, she’s doing really well overall. She really is a tough lady and she’s somehow managing to keep her spirits up, something that I don’t know if I could do if the situation was reversed. She apologizes whenever she needs help even though I tell her that’s not necessary.

 

I really think tomorrow is going to be a better day than today once we get those bandages off. I’ll have to refit the sling after that but hey, if I could figure out all of the straps for my CPAP mask, I think I can figure this out as well.

 

I’ll continue to keep you posted. Thanks for all of the positive thoughts and prayers as we continue on this rather new journey!

 

I hope you all have a wonderful smoke free day!

 

ONWARD TO FREEDOM!!!

 

Chuck

Self Talk

It's your easiest and best offense

when you are quitting smoking.

If you keep thinking about and

talking to yourself about smoking

You're headed back to slavery

 

Say "I don't do that anymore" when you think of smoking.

Laugh out loud even if you don't feel it.

Fake it.

Soon you will be laughing with all sincerity.

 

Whoop Whoop! Self Talk!

and everything looks pretty good, although Chris’s oxygen levels are low and have been since she left recovery. She has a nerve block so most of her shoulder is numb for now. There was just one spot under her arm that really hurt, so the pain pills were started in the hospital.

 

Thankfully, because of my COPD, I’ve got supplemental oxygen for her to use and of course the blood/oxygen meter that has become an important part of my life. Thank you for the prayers and positive thoughts. All in all, things went fairly well.

 

I do need to run and get her oxygen set up, if I can get her to lay down and rest for a bit at least. Well, she can’t really lay down because of the positioning of the sling, but she can relax when she’s ready. Actually, she just came in and sat down. Time to get her set up on oxygen and a few other maintenance items that need to be done. I’ll keep you all posted!

 

Chuck

cpsono

700 DAYS

Posted by cpsono Apr 26, 2017

Good morning my fellow EXers!!!!  It dawned on me as I was getting ready for work today while looking in the mirror...This is a special day for me because today I have 700 days free of nasty cigarettes!  Almost two years ago, I made one of the best decisions of my life and I quit smoking!  I never thought in my wildest dreams that I could have accumulated 700 minutes smoke-free, let alone 700 days.  To everyone struggling with their quits:  This is doable.  It takes a strong commitment and a certain kind of mind-set but it is definitely worth it.  I feel so much healthier and so much happier with myself.  Life still happens and bad things still happen but I know that smoking does NOT make anything better, and in fact it makes things worse...I'm no longer running outside or wondering when I'll get my next fix! As promised by the dear elders on this site, I barely even think of cigs or smoking anymore.  When a thought pops into my head every once in awhile, I quickly brush it away and move on to bigger and better things!  One last thing-I am 100% certain that I wouldn't have made it this far without the care and comfort that I get on this site.  So I am deeply thankful to everyone here especially elders.  Hey wait a minute, I'm an elder!!   Love all you guys and I'm sticking around here because we are all winners!!!!!     .  CP, a happy quitter at 700 days of freedom!!!!!!

freeneasy

The Idiot

Posted by freeneasy Apr 25, 2017

Here is an article  I came across that I found interesting. It is from a website called  Go Ask Alice

which is a health oriented question and answer site provided by Columbia University.

A man wrote in for help. He got hooked on nicotine gum 12 years after he quit smoking. He even

thought about starting to smoke again to get off of the gum!

 

 

Dear Ali

I have a very addictive personality. Fortunately, I am married and have a family and because of the added responsibility of taking care of my family I stay away from a lot of the harmful vices. However, for some stupid reason I decided to try out nicorette. I quit smoking about 12 years ago and thought I would just try out nicorette to see if I could get a buzz. Well two years later I am totally hooked on the stuff and wondering if I should start smoking/chew/patch to get off the stuff. How bad is nicorette for you and is it better than smoking?

The idiot.

Dear The idiot.,

Quitting smoking is no small feat, and since you've successfully quit and stayed away from cigarettes for the past twelve years, you're likely to have the same success with smoking's intended cure, nicotine replacement therapy. So no, don't start smoking again! Although nicotine is a drug, addictive like many others, nicotine gum (Nicorette), is still less harmful than smoking because there's no inhalation of tobacco smoke, or the harmful additives that go into many cigarettes.

But while Nicorette is better for you than smoking, it can have damaging side effects if taken for too long or in dosages that exceed what is recommended. Nicorette is intended to be used for a maximum of twelve weeks. Longer use is discouraged by its manufacturers, who also recommend limiting your dosage to no more than 24 pieces of 4 milligrams (mg) gum per day, or 30 pieces of 2 mg gum.

When used beyond its recommended time or amounts, nicotene gum has been shown to break down into a substance that causes abnormal cell growth, dental problems, and physical dependence. Even though you've been chewing the gum for longer than twelve weeks, you could follow Nicorette's steps for weaning yourself off the stuff. Tips to help you gradually reduce use of nicotine gum include:

  • Decrease the chewing time with each piece from the normal 30 minutes to 10 to 15 minutes for 4 to 7 days.

  • Decrease the total number of pieces used per day by about 1 piece every 4 to 7 days. Substitute one or more pieces of sugarless gum for an equal number of pieces of nicotine gum.

  • Replace 4-mg gum with 2-mg gum and apply any of the previous steps.

  • Consider stopping use of nicotine gum when your craving for nicotine is satisfied by one or two pieces of gum per day

    Nicotine gum manufacturers recommend that if you feel the need to continue using the gum after twelve weeks, it would be wise to contact your health care provider for help with quitting. Since you've already reached that time frame, you might want to make an appointment. You could also consider Nicotine Anonymous, a 12-step group program that helps people kick the addiction. You can also read the related Q&As, which deal with nicotine addiction and withdrawal in additional detail.

 

 

                                                                                           

 

Lady86

Off champix

Posted by Lady86 Apr 25, 2017

Yesterday was my first day off champix after completing my 12 week course. I'm scared, happy, excited nervous and a whole bunch more feelings. In a sad way it became my crutch and now it's all me staying quit. I do credit it with assisting me. Between champix education and understanding it went quite well. It had some intense side effects and that I won't miss. 

Tomorrow, my wife goes in for shoulder surgery. The actual surgery isn’t supposed to be too bad, (orthoscopic in nature) but the recovery is supposed to be kind of long. They of course will have to immobilize her arm for six weeks, other than during therapy.

 

She won’t be able to drive or do so many of the things she loves to do. My real hope is that she doesn’t overdo it when she starts to feel better. But anyway, just thought I’d drop a note to all you wonderful people about this in case I end up being a little scarce for a day or two.

 

I will find time to update everyone, and who knows I may end up with MORE time to hang around as I’m taking the rest of the week off to help her learn how to deal with an immobile arm. She’s a tough woman so I don’t worry too much about the pain she’ll be feeling. Actually, she’s been in a lot of pain for quite a while so perhaps this will seem better in the end.

 

Just as in a quit, we must first prepare and then hope that our preparations are the correct ones for the future. And it’s also much the same in that there will be a positive result after a bit of discomfort. There will be a bit of peace for her once the recovery is complete and she can again function as she always has.

 

I hate to relate this to smoking, but I think I relate everything to smoking! After all, my quit was the one thing that really changed my life. It’s the one thing that taught me that change is an incredibly wonderful thing. It’s the one thing that gave me confidence in myself and in my ability to achieve just about anything I want in life.

 

But the main thing it taught me was to always believe that no matter what, so long as we try, the future will be absolutely incredible!! Never, ever lose sight of the goal of freedom!

 

ONWARD TO FREEDOM!!!

 

Chuck

Giulia

Don't Smoke

Posted by Giulia Champion Apr 24, 2017

You might lose your head.

 

I used to be a happy quitter; during months 2-4 or 5 I was so filled with the joy of freedom that no crave was strong enough to shake my resolve. Quite the opposite: I was happy to get the crave, I called it my proof I am a non-smoker.

Then life brought my share of suffering: being lost for many months, not knowing what was going on in my body, taking many totally un-necessary tests, and for which I have payment plans stretching for months ahead, to eventually being diagnosed with Hashimoto’s (Hypothyroidism). One would think “thank God, we have a diagnosis, we have drugs to treat it, we are good”.  Well, not so fast!  Yes, I am feeling way better than I did in January before the diagnosis, however, my energy never came back.  I still can’t walk, get up in the morning and sit on the edge of my bed for long minutes before I am even able to go make a cup of coffee.

For the last week, my lower back pain came back too; almost like my body is having a pain party at my expense; the week passed in a haze, I am working, fixing dinner, taking pain killers so I can function somehow, doing stretching exercises, massaging the spastic muscles in my back, I have yet to wake up feeling relieved.

And I can’t stop but remember, in my past life, I’d step out on the patio, counting my miseries, and having a couple, or 3 or 4 cigarettes, and for that short time(15-20 minutes), all pains and suffering were forgotten.

Do you know I find myself making the choice not too smoke way too many times/day lately?

But I know well, there are so many of us out there, going through heavier stuff than mine, dealing with more pain and suffering than mine, and making the right choice every day. They are too many to list here, but they are my guiding mentors.  If nothing else, but my respect for them is helping me making the right choice every hour of every day.

Thank you for being here for me every day, thank you for your answers to people in need of guidance. The same answers are helping all of us, newbies or elders!

So here is the answer to my own question: how do we stay EX? We come here every day, read and understand what it takes, and get inspired by our peers, and make the right choice, every day, every hour of every day!

Image result for quit smoking

Chuck_Quit_2-20-2011

The Last Hurrah!

Posted by Chuck_Quit_2-20-2011 Apr 23, 2017

There was a time about eight weeks into my quit when I had a week similar to hell week. For no reason that I could find, I had craves attacking me seemingly endlessly. It surprised me enough that I didn’t think of all of the smoking realities like the fact that a crave only lasts a few minutes.

 

Had I thought of that last fact, I could have created calm. I know that if I wasn’t in no man’s land, that I was close, but nothing seemed to get through to me on these days. The first day, I remember being angry, thinking that after all this work, I was going backwards. I trudged through that week, wondering what happened!

 

In the end, I did understand it for what it was. It was the addictions last hurrah! I realized that this week was really my addiction losing enough power that it wanted to try one last time to get me to give in.

 

It was like an abscessed tooth that screams bloody murder before it at last dies once and for all. The final warning to the brain that something was wrong. But in this case, it was my brain accepting it’s new world.

 

I know in the next week, after my tortured mind calmed down that I felt a kind of peace that I’d never felt before. I began really feeling the freedom for the first time after going through this last week. And I realized that this new week was a crossroad for my quit. That even though that previous week was hard, I’d made it through the fire that was my addiction.

 

To be honest, I was quite proud of myself for fighting off the demon that week, and what was really nice was that now I could see a glimpse of my future. Of what it will be like so long as I continue onward in the journey. I vowed to never be blindsided like this again for I wanted that little glimmer of freedom that I was feeling to grow and grow until it was as bright as the sun!

 

It was as if my vision had suddenly cleared, giving me sight beyond where I was at the moment and from that glimmer came renewed resolve to finish this journey with a smile! I knew I wasn’t finished quite yet, however. I mean, I’d just finished my patches a couple of weeks ago, but I didn’t care. After that week, my climb of Mt. Freedom was done with a spring to my step, and a smile on my face.

 

I think that week proved to me that nothing could stop me!

 

So never believe that you cannot achieve peace. Never think that the rewards at the end of the journey aren’t worth the effort. Though our addictions will try to attack us at any given time, always remember that even the hard times are temporary. That the next day or week is a new beginning that will continue to propel you onward to this wonderful place where so many of us live now.

 

It’s really not the end of the world when we quit. Actually, it’s the exact opposite. In reality it’s a new beginning, and one that is filled with light after we traverse the darkness. The trick is to stay focused on the light of freedom at the end of the journey, rather than focusing on current discomforts. It’s right there ahead of you, shimmering in its wondrous beauty and waiting for you to first see it and then take it. Keep fighting my friends. There is an end to this. There is peace in the future of a nonsmoker. Never give up and never give in and you too will find the wonder that awaits you.

 

ONWARD TO FREEDOM!!!

 

Chuck

Chuck_Quit_2-20-2011

Pushing Through

Posted by Chuck_Quit_2-20-2011 Apr 22, 2017

Sometimes during the first weeks of a quit, we have to really search hard to find our resolve to continue. We begin to question if it’s all really worth it and the addiction continues to attack ruthlessly when we’re in this weakened state. These are the bad days of a quit. Days where we wonder if we’ll make it through.

 

We’ve all had these days and understand how those days feel. Although it can be hard, distraction can be key to winning on those days. Sometimes the mind gets stuck and needs a little kick to get it onto something else.

 

These are the times to remember why you’re quitting. To use those reasons to your advantage and to distract the mind with the positive world you’re now walking. I mean, as much as quitting seems negative when we’re doing it, if you can step outside of yourself and realize all of the positive you’re creating with your quit, then the mind will follow those thoughts.

 

The brain seems to always be hungry for the positive things in life. But it’s also hungry for the false pleasures that we’ve trained our minds are real pleasures. This is why we fight ourselves so much during a quit. The two things are so unalike and yet they’re all part of the life we choose to live when we quit.

 

Some people use the rubber band around the wrist as a reminder. Others come here and blog. I always used visualization. The main thing is that once we distract our minds from the discomfort that is a quit, we always feel better.

 

The worst thing we can do on these bad days is allow the thoughts of smoking remain in our minds because if we do, we give power to the addiction and risk failure.

 

So on those bad days, try to remember that the key is changing the current thought patterns. Look to the positive of a quit. Instead of cigarettes, think of the wonderful life without them. Show the mind that quitting is the only viable option. See yourself in the future, smiling and never even thinking about a cigarette because it doesn’t exist in that world that you’re creating. Feel the freedom that you know awaits you and that you get closer to with each passing day. Make freedom your mantra, thinking of that mantra throughout the day.

 

Every one of these days that you change the minds patterns teaches the mind what you really want and takes away more power from the addiction. And as the addiction becomes weaker, the feeling of freedom becomes stronger until one day you realize that you really have made it. That nothing can make you smoke so long as you remain true to yourself.

 

It’s worth the effort. There’s so much waiting for you if you can just get past those first hard weeks . . . .

 

ONWARD TO FREEDOM!!!

 

Chuck

ShawnP

Stacie is in need of prayers

Posted by ShawnP Champion Apr 21, 2017

I got a message from Tommy asking me if i can post a blog. I don't know the details but, what i do know is that Stac2 is in the hospital. Prayers would much be appreciated for our beloved friend. Thank you!

 

UPDATE:

I have found that she has Pulmonary Embolism. I did have to look this up. I heard of it but wasn't positive. Here is a link for those that do not know. Pulmonary Embolism-Topic Overview 

bonnie.s

Check In

Posted by bonnie.s Apr 20, 2017

Check In.  Haven't been on in awhile.  Gardening and tending the new baby chicks has kept me busy.  Was amazed to see It's been 82 days.  I hadn't given it much thought really.  I will say this has been an intense week craving wise but I refuse to feed that demon.  I think family tension from the holidays has been the reason for wanting that smoke so badly.  Just have to remind myself to keep moving forward as a non smoker

Chuck_Quit_2-20-2011

Random thoughts

Posted by Chuck_Quit_2-20-2011 Apr 20, 2017

Did you ever want something so badly and yet you just couldn’t find a way to have it? I mean a desire for something that just seems impossible to have. Like a goal that can’t be shaken. A dream of going somewhere wonderful on vacation even if you can’t afford it. Or a house that you want so badly, and yet it just seems impossible to get it.

 

And yet in life, we do get these things. We do find a way to get what we really want. So why is quitting smoking so different? It’s something that we all want to do before we actually do it. And yet, unlike finding the means to buy that house, we don’t seem to want to invest everything we’ve got into a quit.

 

I completely understand those feelings because once, many years ago that person was me. I knew I needed to quit, I just couldn’t wrap my mind around the concept of quitting something that I was so sure I was fond of.

 

I was truly lost and addicted, seemingly beyond the point of no return. I struggled for years with the concept of quitting before I ever actually did it. But when I finally made my choice, then I poured everything I had into that choice. I became obsessed with the concept of quitting long before I ever put out that last cigarette.

 

And it really does take that kind of commitment. It takes a desire to see a totally different world that really was always there, except it was hidden in shadows by a cloud of smoke. Peering through the cloud of addiction into the life that could be can be a number one motivator to finding success on the path to freedom.

 

At least it was for me. When I pictured freedom and what a free life would be like, I couldn’t help but persu it. Just like for most, the path was hard at first but never did I think I couldn’t do it. Never did I let myself believe that I might fail. And I knew that the only way to remain free in those first hard weeks was to remain focused on the prizes ahead, rather than thinking that it had to be hard.

 

And that’s where I am now. Focused on the wonders of freedom and that new life that I realized was no dream. The life that I’m living now and you know what? The memories of my quit and those first hard days are now just that. Nothing but a memory . . .

 

ONWARD TO FREEDOM!!!

 

Chuck

Chuck_Quit_2-20-2011

Desperation

Posted by Chuck_Quit_2-20-2011 Apr 19, 2017

So often in a quit, we find ourselves thinking about the very thing that we long to give up. In fact, we can become almost obsessed about it! Even more so than when we smoked. When we smoked, we planned our lives around our addictions. But when we quit, there’s no way to plan what happens or when we might get a crave or face a trigger that perhaps we hadn’t yet thought about.

 

These things at times create a feeling of desperation because we don’t want to give in and yet our minds don’t quite grasp the new life that we’re trying to create. And so we feel almost desperate when it comes to keeping the quit safe.

 

I think when the craves are the worst that we all know when the addiction is starting to win. At times we can literally feel our quits slipping away. How one reacts during this time is important because it can make or break the quit.

 

Some simply give in while others do something to fight the addiction, and get through the hard moments. Each time we get through one of those rough patches in the quit, we become stronger. The hard part is surviving the first days when our addictions attack us, because we don’t yet have any experience with how our addictions attack us when we quit.

 

It’s those first times that make us lose the quit, if we don’t get through it and learn from it. We can make it together. The trick is to come here or somewhere with like minded people to help to get through those rough patches. The key is to change the minds current thinking in order to continue on to freedom.

 

So the next time one of those craves hits you. The next time you feel your quit slipping away, do whatever you can to distract the mind from its current thinking. Don’t be afraid to let those that support you know that you’re struggling. Sometimes we need the power of the many to overcome the addicted mind.

 

There’s a new life out there waiting for you. It takes a bit of a struggle to get there but once you do, you’ll never want to live any other way. The power of freedom is so much stronger than the power of the addiction, but it takes time to get there. Don’t ever give in because of temporary discomfort. Life is to precious to throw away.

 

Look to the future and before long you’ll be living that future. All it takes is the will to get past those first days of desperation. All it takes is a burning desire to see a brighter future. All it takes is a belief in the fact that you will win this war and find that freedom that could only be dreamed of at first.

 

ONWARD TO FREEDOM!!!

Giulia

More Lessons Learned

Posted by Giulia Champion Apr 18, 2017

When I had my pre-op appointment with the surgeon who did my achilles surgery last week, he asked if I smoked. This is a standard question these days prior to surgery. And by doctors in general these days. I told him I had quit. He said, “good for you,” and we talked a bit about it. He explained WHY it’s good for us to quit in relation to surgery (aside for all the reasons of which we already know.) He explained that there’s a 500 fold increase in surgical complications with people who smoke. Let me repeat that - 500 fold increase in smokers.

 

He illuminated the lesson by speaking about a woman patient he had who had diabetes and was also a smoker. He told her she should stop smoking prior to the surgery. She didn’t. She ended up dying of a heart attack. (He didn’t say if it was during surgery or after she had gotten home.) He went on to explain that nicotine is a vaso-constrictor (narrows the blood vessels). Not only the large arteries, but the small arterioles. With a 500 fold increase in the narrowing of those vessels during surgery, you’re body is obviously under more stress and distress. It’s harder on the smaller vessels because they have less room to shrink. Also healing is impaired due to the narrowing of the blood vessels and thus lack of oxygen flow. Most of us who have done our homework on here know about this. I pass it on to those who don’t.

 

There is ONE benefit to smoking, however, which I learned from one of the nurses the day of my operation: it decreases the nausea potential from the anesthesia. I was given a Scopolamine patch behind my ear to prevent such because I had “two points against me.” 1) I didn’t smoke, 2) I was a woman. She said women experience more nausea than men regarding anesthesia and being a non smoker increases the potential also.  (That's all right!  I'll take that point.)   So be sure to keep smoking right up to your lung transplant to avoid nausea. (Ahem!)

 

Another interesting moment was when they placed a cannula over my ears with the two small prongs up the nose for added oxygen flow. I lay there thinking, wow - this is what people with severe COPD have to wear 24/7 while carrying around their small oxygen canisters. Gave me an immediate and visceral experience of what that’s like. For those who haven’t experienced it - I don’t recommend it. Quit smoking before the necessity becomes your reality.

 

And yet a fourth lesson - while I was being given the leg block by the anesthetist, he was talking to me and asking all sorts of questions - like what brought me to this area of the country etc. (just small talk) A few minutes later, after he had walked away, I felt my leg start to go numb and I said to the nurse, did he do the leg block? She said he had. I said I didn’t even feel it. She said “That’s because he’s real good at DISTRACTING.” Ah, so THAT’s why he was asking me all those questions. Brilliant! Reminded me of the tools we have here to stop cravings. Distract yourself by getting up and going for a walk, or learning a new skill, putting on some music and dancing, altering your focus, etc. Distracting really works to offset cravings!

 

If you haven't yet quit - may this help to give you an incentive to do so.  If you have, may this encourage you to maintain it!

Its odd but I quit when I got married, Smoke Enders. back around 1980 for 20 years. Triggers were not well addressed.  The tool that they recommended was the attention span thing. Simple and very effective. Don't honor those learned (brainwashed) associations that led to lighting up one more coffin nail with an argument. Just put it aside for 10 minutes and you will move on to the next thing. Simple and effective.  

  This time I started the weaning myself off nicotine thing and got disgusted with how big a deal I was making it.  Then I read a bunch of Mr. Carr's book and finding someone who agreed with me really revved me  up. I had been doing the drudgery with diligence and it was makework if you know what I mean. I was dancing with the devil in my mind, examining these motivations, picking them apart and exhausting myself with this mental chess game. Don't get me wrong, dispelling rumors about the character of nicotine addiction and why you really light up is very important. If you are really going to quit, you need to know why and what to do.  I guess my point is, once you have conquered the beast intellectually, honoring the triggers may not be as useful as putting the urge aside for ten minutes or so and getting on with your life.  Sorry but drama is me. OBSESSING OVER THE MAJESTICALLY POWERFUL TRIGGERS is a bad use of our time and actually might reinforce the exact behaviors that we desperately need to put behind us.   Just my morning thought.

Wasn't it great to see the home page this morning back to its inviting self?  Yay for the Spammers being gone and I shout out a huge thanks to our administrator Mark and the tech team for kicking the spam to the curb! It's the Easter weekend so it's the long wk end for most of you working folks, let's be EXtra Vigilant in protecting the best gift that any of us will us will ever give ourselves which is the gift of LIFE, if you are early in your quit and are struggling to remain quit deep breaths, believe in yourself, be willing, determined and totally committed to succeed and you can and will be successful one precious smoke free day at a time, stay close to this site, keep your mind as well as your hands occupied and know that you will get through the roller coaster ups and downs and get to that good place in your quit but you must hang on tight and stick with N.O.P.E  - Not One Puff Ever - will give you a beautiful smoke free life but unfortunately you must go through whatever cravings and whatever else first but boy oh boy it's absolutely Doable and so very worth it all to be able to go anywhere, anytime, whenever, wherever and however without the crutch! So don't throw your hands up in the air and give up and give in to the cravings because a relapse isn't the answer because another DAY ONE would really suck big time, keep stacking up those wonderful days of Freedom every Day you get through is another day WON! 

smorgy8513

Good News Blog!

Posted by smorgy8513 Apr 12, 2017

Saw my dr today and the scan showed just a small amount of growth of both of the 2 tumors in my lungs.  So small that he says no chemo at this time.    He said he thinks this is how my cancer journey will go....small growths and when there is enough he will do treatment.    Says that the next treatment will probably be Opdivo or the other one (Kytrera?) if the tumor is big enough to biopsy to find if my level of (?) is high enough.   

But for right now....I'm not doing chemo, I'm feeling happy and blessed!

In 3 months I'll have my next scan and we'll see what happens at that point.

God is good!

Thanks for all your prayers my EX family!

shashort

Thank you so much

Posted by shashort Apr 11, 2017

Thank you to everyone who commented and really did help. I  I was side blinded be these Nico dude brain for 2 days and was starting to make me uncomfortable and not understanding what or where that came from. I knew they were thoughts not actions to follow.  Greatful to each and everyone for all your great words of wisdom.  I am feeling lots better tonight with the thoughts gone and not tasting and smelling smoke since I sniffed my candle and the mints took care of taste. I am off to bed with another day won. Will be 334 start of tomorrow and 31 days left for my one year aniversary.  Hugs to all!

Chuck_Quit_2-20-2011

Living the Dream

Posted by Chuck_Quit_2-20-2011 Apr 11, 2017

Man, it’s such a wonderful life when we achieve the freedom that we fight for for so long! It’s so very peaceful, colorful, happy and free when we can at last live the dream that we create the first day we begin to think about quitting.

 

I know when I first thought of quitting, (and got over the initial fear of the idea) it became a vision of how life would be without cigarettes. I have to be honest. It didn’t seem like a very pretty dream to me. I mean, in my mind’s eye, everything I did had a cigarette involved, whether it be the simple task or the reward that comes after the task, there was always a cigarette.

 

But very slowly, I started to dream of what life would be like without those nasty things and over time, it started to look like a dream I wanted to turn into a reality. And so at last, I took the first step and ordered my patches. For me, that was the moment that I knew that this dream might become real.

 

It was also when I started accepting that this dream really was going to become a reality as I stepped onto the path of freedom by preparing. For months I learned my addiction and the components of it. The triggers and urges and how the cigarettes were intertwined into my life. At first quitting seemed like an impossible task to complete. Before my prep began, I was a chain smoker! How could I remove the cigarette from everything in my life?

 

But I stuck with it and allowed myself to focus more and more on the dream of life without cigarettes. Every day I kept the dream alive by focusing on how to quit. And then, over time I realized that I was ready. That I wanted to see the dream with no cigarettes in it more than the thoughts of addiction that used to be my reality.

 

And so I put out that last cigarette and all that was in my mind was that dream of being a nonsmoker. I saw how wonderful my life would be without the old ball and chain that I’d been dragging around for most of my life. And I knew that up ahead was a place of peace. I knew that my addicted mind would eventually accept the dream of freedom.

 

It did happen for me eventually. As each day of my quit got easier, so too did my ability to stay focused on the dream of freedom. I was able to cast aside the old reality that I used to live.

 

It all started with a single thought that became the dream of freedom. And for every day that I fought for that freedom, the dream became more real until one day I realized that I really was free! That the only thing that could now derail me was myself.

 

That dream is every bit as wonderful as I imagined it would be! It’s so very much worth the discomfort you might be feeling now because right now, and at every moment that we live, we’re building our future. The actions of today will determine what your future will look like.

 

My hope is that you’ll choose the dream of freedom because it just feels so wonderful to walk in that new world you are now creating just as I did over six years ago. Hold onto your dreams of freedom and in no time, you’ll be living those dreams!

 

ONWARD TO FREEDOM!!!

 

Chuck

Discussions

Posted by TristanNani Apr 11, 2017

Why are discussions being displayed with odd characters?

Somehow my daughter, Mason's Mom and I  didn't realize that there wasn't any school yesterday she called me at 7:40 yesterday morning once she realized by talking to her coworkers, oh well I had Mason already to go but he sure didn't mind. Anyway we're having a heat wave  yay we got up to 19°Celsius or 66 °F. I got my little Mack Attack off to school today, hubby takes him before he goes to work, this afternoon is supposed to be gorgeous again so Mason and I can be outside when he gets off the bus, maybe even make some drains in the middle of the driveway.  then rain tomorrow which will melt more of the white crap  and the best part of everything that I say or do doesn't involve the cancer sticks because I don't smoke anymore in my smoking days anything good or bad was an EXcuse to smoke but once I finally quit then it took quite a bit of time to relearn different ways of dealing with life's issues without the crutch of smoking but boy oh boy it's worth it all to be FREE! So if you're thinking about quitting smoking, now is the time or if you're struggling, hang on tight and keep moving forward because it's going to get easier and easier as time goes on but unfortunately you must go through whatever cravings and whatever else first then you can start to reap the benefits of an Ex Smoker, every day you get through is another day WON! N.O.P.E  Not One Puff Ever - will give you a beautiful smoke free life because S. I.N.A.O   Smoking is not an option! Your life is literally depending on you to quit smoking and Remain quit, there's definitely LIFE after cigarettes but you must stick with your quit! N. E. F.  Never Ever Forget  - the early early days and wks of quitting smoking, ugh on going back to DAY ONE but YAY FOR ANOTHER DAY WON! It's all up to the person quitting smoking because it's a choice whether we smoke or not and I really hope everyone reading this chooses NOT! ,it's not easy but it's definitely Doable and worth it! 

My Printer Tray Wouldn't Go In BACKWARDS [3x's :-)]

AND, my cell phone battery went into the charger BACKWARDS

and would not take a charge, no matter how much I wished it so.

I'm not blaming them.

They didn't do this to themselves.  :-)

 

We can't blame something else for smoking.

Nothing puts a lighter in your hand, jumps in your mouth and lights itself, then, squeezes you like and accordion forcing the smoke in and out.

We must take responsibility and stop blaming everything else for our choices.

There is no Klingon on our shoulder.


HEY

The Klingon Is Us!

Don't KCling To Smoking.

Stop Now and save your teeth.  :-)

smorgy8513

An Update

Posted by smorgy8513 Apr 10, 2017

Some have asked me about my decision to move to New Mexico following my trip there last week.     This is the 2nd time I've been out there and I do love the mountains, desert and weather.     I toured a 55+ community this last week and it was great.   I know that my cancer dr will transfer me to a dr out there and the cancer center out there is said to be very good.

But there is something that is telling me that now is not the time.    Family and friends are happy with this and I'm feeling ok with my decision at this time.       If I decide to move in a year or 2 I can do it then.

So, someone remind me when the weather turns cold, when snow is up to the bottom of my butt that I made this decision!!!!

Any questions?   

Just don't tell me I'm being stupid!

BTW.....had scan today and I'll get results from my cancer dr this Weds.    Prayers please that it goes well!

Chuck_Quit_2-20-2011

Finding peace

Posted by Chuck_Quit_2-20-2011 Apr 10, 2017

 

When we first quit, feeling calm and peaceful is something that’s almost impossible! The ride through our addiction begins with many hard days. What we do with those days is what’s important, I think. I found being busy, (even though I was around smokers) to be an important aspect of those first days.

 

We cannot spend the day just sitting and thinking about the quit and I think if we’re not active on those first days, that’s exactly what we do. Besides, whether we’re quitting or not, life goes on and it’s best to learn to dissociate life from smoking right away! In other words, things that happen in life should have nothing to do with a desire to smoke.

 

After those first hard days, when the physical withdrawals are over with, we can find peace, though we must really look for it in most cases. It starts with an understanding that it’s now our minds that are causing us discomfort. It’s no longer a physical thing, even if it feels like it is.

 

For this reason it’s possible to find peace. I found it through visualization, but there are many other ways. Exercise can be key to helping us get past the craves. So can working in the garden, even if we always smoked before when we worked there.

 

The key during craving days is to change the focus of the mind, I think. Deep breaths are helpful in reminding us that the end goal is better health, and a willingness to be free. Working in the garden can make us feel better simply because we’re nurturing something else and when the task is complete, there’s always a sense of satisfaction, so long as the reward trigger doesn’t get in the way.

 

These are things to figure out during prep time so what we enjoy isn’t a trigger that we have to worry about. But for me, building that wonderful landscape in my mind where I could relax was a key.

 

Sure, you have to actively try to find peace on those first days, but eventually that becomes the new habit and when it does, things are just easier.

 

So I guess my point is that we don’t have to feel horrible after the first days. We can feel good and still keep our quits. Find what distracts you the easiest and you will have a key to peace because once you change the focus of the mind, it kind of breaks the power the addiction has over you.

 

Once you give your heart and soul a chance to peek through into the new life that you’re creating, it get’s easier. Just don’t dwell on the discomfort. There’s so much positive going on during a quit and you can find a permanent peace so long as you never give up!

 

The key to a successful quit lives inside of all of us. All we have to do is find the right components and put them together, and we can win!

 

Well, off to work now.

 

ONWARD TO FREEDOM!!!

 

Chuck

I smoked for 40 yrs and never thought of getting any health issues that was smoking related even when my husband found out he had mild emphysema which scared him into quitting, he'll have 3 yrs on April 25th. I continued to smoke outside of course but we hadn't smoked in the house for over a decade anyway but in June of 2014 I found out that I have mild copd through a breathing test which scared me into quitting smoking so I found this site and read everything I could find on quitting smoking and Remaining Quit, I learned a wealth of information which strengthened my resolve to take back my life from the clutches of the dreaded nicotine poison, I never thought in a million years that I could quit smoking but on July 14th I'll be celebrating 3 glorious smoke free years of Freedom. Like most people I went through the roller coaster of ups and downs of withdrawals and mood swings, I could be laughing one second and blatting like a baby the next, nobody including my grown children wanted to be around me and didn't think I would quit anyway but the grandchildren were A OK to be around me they were my bright spot and still are, I made it through those rough patches because I finally wised up and realized that there was never going to be a good time to quit smoking that there was always going to be an excuse to quit on another day but another day won't come unless you decide now is the time so prepare for your quit and bite the bullet, pick a quit date and join the ranks of being an Exer then once you start reaping the benefits of being FREE, that's when we all need to be Vigilant and protect the best gift that any of us will ever give ourselves which is the gift of LIFE!!!!!!  there's definitely life after cigarettes and it's super fantastic to be able to go anywhere, anytime, whenever, wherever and however without wondering where to sneak off to suck on a disgusting cancer stick.

When we first start smoking, we begin placing things in the mind to defend the insanity of what we’re doing. Every day that we smoke, we reinforce the insanity until eventually, it becomes a reality. Our minds work hard at first to convince us that what we’re doing is right. And over time, we become willing slaves to our own minds.

 

With each passing day, another tentacle of addiction is placed within us making it ever harder to quit. Eventually, there are so many tentacles that we come to believe that we can’t quit, That it would just be impossible!

 

We build this world one day at a time and we always include the lie within it. Soon, our perception of smoking becomes more normal than the perception of freedom. In fact, freedom is the furthest thing from our minds. But for some, a crack appears in the addiction. A place where a tentacle hasn’t yet been placed. If we’re lucky, we grab onto this crack and try to widen it, so we can peer into the other side of our addiction. The free side.

 

Of course the addiction responds with fear. Fear of a different world. Fear of failure. Fear of change. And the list goes on and on. Some choose to let these fears win and simply go back to planting more tentacles of addiction within themselves. Others choose to learn how to rise above this fear and perhaps enter this world that was seen in the crack of addiction.

 

And so we begin to entertain the idea of removing those tentacles from ourselves and we choose to take the first careful step on the path of freedom. We choose freedom over the false calm of nicotine. And so we make our plans and work toward a quit.

 

During this time, we begin to pull some of the tentacles of our addiction out of ourselves. The tentacles are everywhere within our minds, woven into us over the many years that we chose not to fight for freedom. And these first tentacles are hard to remove, because they’re the first steps toward a new reality.

 

But we begin to deny ourselves the things that seemed so normal, like smoking while driving or after a meal or using a smoke as a reward. One by one we begin to rip these tentacles out of ourselves and with each one removed, the entire monster that is our addiction becomes weaker.

 

When we quit, there are so many tentacles to remove at first. They seem to be tangled into everything! Like an organized mess! But on that first day, we begin to sort out the mess that is our addiction. We begin to see how we inserted each of them into ourselves and as such we learn how to remove them.

 

And day after day as we walk on the path to freedom, we free ourselves of more and more of those tentacles. But it took a long time to put them there, and as such it takes a while to remove them all. In fact, we always miss a couple that sneak up on us down the road, but in the end the remaining tentacles have no real power over us.

 

We all hold the key to removing these things. What it really takes is a desire to take that first step and then a commitment that is stronger than anything within us already. We really do forge ahead on a journey when we quit, and one by one we rip those nasty tentacles out of us until we’re free!!

 

That’s where the peace comes from. The realization that one by one, we took away the weapons of the addiction. One by one, we built this new world that lives on the other side of addiction and over time, there’s simply nothing left to remove.

 

After that, it’s really up to us to keep the addiction at bay for the rest of our lives. Once we’ve removed the bulk of the addiction, all that remains are the empty holes where our addiction once resided. And we can fill those holes with a glorious future that only freedom can create!

 

Fight on my friends! It’s your future that we’re talking about here! Never give up and never give in!!

 

ONWARD TO FREEDOM!!!

 

Chuck

Hey all,

 

Ended up with a light bout of the flu. I think it’s minimal because of the flu shot that I had, but for me it brings some things to mind. It used to be that I could catch a slight cold and no big deal. Actually, it used to be that I could catch a horrible cold and no big deal.

 

That was before I found out that I had minimal COPD. Now, when I catch a cold no matter how slight, I have to give it extra consideration. I learned this the hard way. By living it! The first cold that I let go almost put me in the hospital, but it also taught me that I have COPD, so now I can take precautions.

 

And I do. I know that for others it’s way harder but for me, it’s simply keeping track of how my lungs are doing in order to keep on top of any symptoms that might pop up. Also, I try to stay quite active during these times as it seems to help me overall.

So often in life we think we have everything going the way we want it to go and smoking just sort of fits into it. That was my past. Looking at the world through rose colored glasses, as they say. In a way, I was blindsided by myself because I never really tried to see reality. Rather, I was confident in my own vision of how things were and the cigarettes reinforced that for me. Or so I thought!

 

It was so easy to ignore all of the powerful lessons that were thrown my way in my life, like my father dying of smoking related throat cancer, or the cough that I was developing with each year that I smoked.

 

I think that a lot of what keeps a person smoking is the belief that so long as the world doesn’t change to much, then we’ll be happy. Change is something that terrifies an addict. I know. I am one! We spend so long convincing ourselves that what we’re doing is right, even when we also know that it isn’t, that it becomes really hard to remove that fear of change.

 

When I was able to remove that one thing, the crack in my addiction split wide open! I saw the reality of what I was doing and decided that change was the only option. And I made it into the wonderful world of freedom, apparently unscathed until the diagnosis of COPD five years later.

 

I don’t feel any anger towards myself for ending up with this chronic illness because the past has been forgiven and I simply want to move forward, doing everything I can to enjoy every aspect of my world of freedom. If I have to be a little more cautious in my life, then so be it! I will.

 

The main thing for all of us is the fact that we faced change and accepted it for what it is. And when we finally understood what we as addicts were doing with ourselves, we learned to understand that this change is a wonderful thing!

 

That’s one of the reasons that I enjoy this place so much. Everyone here is embracing change and battling for freedom simply because we know it’s the right thing to do! And it’s the only acceptable option for our futures.

 

So smile as you embrace change. It’s really not all bad. In fact, it’s the creation of a brand new world and one that is so wonderful once we get past the lies of addiction. I love watching freedom blossom after the committed work that it takes to be free!

 

Sorry for rambling. What I really wanted to say was, have a wonderful smokefree day, my friends!

 

ONWARD TO FREEDOM!!!

 

Chuck

If you have not read it take the time.  It may just stop you from complaining about wanting to smoke.

 You are probably going to think I am a B*tch but..... 

This was the episode I watched before bed last night.

It's about 50 minutes long but well worth the time spent.

The human condition.  WOW

Have a GREAT WEEKEND

ShawnP

Bonfire????

Posted by ShawnP Champion Apr 7, 2017

It's been brought to my attention that we should hold another bonfire. We are on the new platform now and many new members. I know that i have hosted many bonfires in the past and would like to give the opportunity to someone else. Is there someone who would like to host it this time? You can choose whichever weekend you would like to do it on.

Not too worry, but our son's in-laws are visiting starting tomorrow through Tuesday!  We will be busy cooking and baking (as Romanians always do when they have guests), entertaining and showing around!  It is their first time in AZ, we want to make it memorable for them.

You all take care, stay smoke free, and enjoy the weekend!

ShawnP

Volunteer Needed

Posted by ShawnP Champion Apr 7, 2017

I would like to thank Smorgy for all her dedication to the Freedom Train all these years. We are in need of a person to post Friday's Freedom Train. If you would like to volunteer your time, private message me. You must be able to copy/paste and to post pics. Happy Friday to all!

 

UPDATE: c2q is our new conductor for Friday's Freedom Train. Thank you c2q

 

I was a smoker. Yep. Smoked for most of my life. Sometimes I wondered what not smoking would be like, but I always knew that quitting smoking was just over the horizon. Couldn’t quite see it, but it was there. I was sure of it!

 

In fact, I was sure for thirty or forty years. I thought about the health risks and knew that soon, I’d be quitting and that besides, bad things only happened to other people. I looked at the horizon day after day, waiting for that quit to appear.

 

I was sure there must be some magic, somewhere out of sight in that place that was close and yet so far away. Soon I was racking up the years, never even slowing down on keeping my addiction happy. Why? Bad things only happen to others, after all. I mean really, the magical quit is just over the horizon. I could almost see it a time or two, but laughed that silly notion off. After all, bad things only happen to other people.

 

And then one day out of nowhere, reality set in. I suddenly wanted to see the magic that I always knew lived just over the horizon. I decided it was time to bring that horizon to me! But how?

 

That’s when I realized that there was no magic there and that the only magic for me would be the magic that I created when I actually quit. And suddenly, that spot just over the horizon became something incredibly scary! I feared that thing that for so long I thought I could do whenever I wanted.

 

I knew I could no longer wait for that magical and easy quit to appear. No. I had to create my magic! The fantasy that I’d lived for so long was actually a lie! And the thing is, I knew it was time. I had to quit smoking for my future! I had to quit smoking for those that I loved and wanted to spend more time with. I had to quit smoking because I could no longer be a slave to - uh - myself!

 

And so I cast off those old thoughts of the magical quit that will never appear and decided to go for it! I decided once and for all that I would be free. And that one day, I really would quit. It took a while to prepare simply because I’d been so unprepared for the better part of my life. The world of smoking had become ingrained into everything I did.

 

And then when I stared at the horizon I realized that once I quit, there was a new life waiting there, just over the horizon and that no magic was going to get me there. I prepped hard, wanting to get to that new place that I knew was waiting for me. And over time, I did create the magic that would be the foundation of my quit.

 

And that magic was determination and a burning desire to be free. I nurtured this newfound desire, making it the most important thing in my entire life. And when I quit. When I actually stepped over the horizon and into a new world I understood at last that there really was a magical new world awaiting me! There really was everything I was looking for in life. And I understood that no matter what I was going to keep that magic close to me as a precious new quit!

 

I still gaze at the horizon at times. I still wonder what it would’ve been like if I hadn’t created my own magic rather than waiting for it to come to me. I know my life wouldn’t have been pretty. I know my life would be filled with a kind of darkness of my own creation.

 

Go for it! Never believe that there’s nothing for you over the horizon. It’s there! The freedom and peace that can only come from a determination to never, ever give up on ourselves!!

 

ONWARD TO FREEDOM!!!

 

Chuck

Violet_Quit

WOW 200 DAYS

Posted by Violet_Quit Apr 5, 2017

I WANT TO SHOUT 200 DAYS..... I did it. I made it to 200 days....I feel so good being smoke free. It seemed like yesterday I been worried about getting through the first week,then the 2nd week and on and on and here i am today at 200 DAYS.....in the beginning i worried i wouldn't make it through but thanks to the help of all the elders and all the reading and the support they give me i'm going to do this because its doable....when you put your mind to something and say your going to do it you can do whatever you say. It's not always easy but it can be done because i'm a good one to show for that. On to 300 and 400 and 500 ext.... We all can do this together because its doable.

Lady86

DAY 13

Posted by Lady86 Apr 4, 2017

Morning all. I haven't been on here much, haven't really known what to say. Since Friday I have felt calm and at peace. The craving comes and goes, definitely not as intense or frequent anymore. Last week was a learning process for sure. I had to learn how to cope, deal and handle frustration, stress and emotions in a different manner.  I learnt more triggers I hadn't prepared for and now feel more confident should they arise again.  I take break at the non smoking outside areas at work. My hair and my hands smell amazing, I can smell things that I probably couldn't smell as well when I was a heavy smoker ex. Fresh spring rain the other day and BBQ food. I'd be lying if I said it's been or will be easy, but it does get easier. I find as each day of freedom passes, it's easier to turn my back on my old toxic fake "friend".  Hope all is well with whoever reads this. It's a struggle but it's one worth going through. One day at a time, education and support will help you. 

Say N.O.P.E (not one puff ever) today and for all days to come. 

Melissa ☺

I'm glad to back with this group of non-smoking people but I must say it's like perhaps seven years ago and I am lost with this new set-up.  Having a lovely smoke-free Monday.

What is good about it???  We went another week without smoking, we are one week healthier, and are alive, here, on EX to speak about it!

What is not so good about it ???

Chuck_Quit_2-20-2011

The Mountain

Posted by Chuck_Quit_2-20-2011 Apr 2, 2017

Yesterday I spent a lot of time looking up at the mountain. It was completely covered in snow and looked even more formidable than it usually does. Though I never climbed this particular fourteener, it has always served to remind me of the journey and how Mt. Freedom helped me through as well.

 

When I look there, it brings me back to those first hard days. But it also brings me back to the achievement that this mountain and I had together. It reminded me of  the fact that my quit wasn’t all bad and that there was so much learned while on the never ending path of freedom.

 

I now know myself better than I’ve ever known myself before. It’s because I had to know myself very well in order to complete the journey. I have a kind of confidence in my ability to accept change. I now have a belief in a brighter future, just as the recent past has been bright.

 

But mostly, that mountain reminds me that we can accomplish anything so long as the mind, heart and soul are willing to work together. This is the future that I speak of when I mention to look ahead.

 

The path itself can be treacherous at times but the peace that resides at the end of it is what makes the journey worth it. Since my true vision of Mt Freedom lives inside of me, it always reminds me of the fact that the entire quit journey is something fought inside. That we can’t do another’s journey for them, but that we can give them the promise of what lies ahead, beyond the discomfort that we all must face in the beginning.

 

When there is so much discomfort in the present, it makes it hard to look to what lies ahead and yet, this one exercise can be the salvation of a quit, so long as we can keep in perspective to our reality.

 

So if you want to see that future that smells cleaner. If you want to see that future where you’ll have a spring in your step like you’ve never had before. If you want to feel the pride that comes from loving both ourselves and those who love us, then take that first step on the path to freedom.

 

And if you’ve already started and you get discouraged, come here and blog to us because we’re a group of people who can understand what you’re going through because we’ve been there. Sometimes just spelling out your feelings and angers in a blog is enough to make it easier.

 

And in return we’ll always give you that gentle reminder of what lies ahead where the rewards are. We’ll help you to see the peace that you might not be feeling right now. We’ll help you to find the key that lives inside of you that will unlock the door to freedom.

 

It’s all there waiting for you. All you have to do is prepare for battle, take that first step and then one step at a time, one hour at a time, one week at a time, you will find that peace that you always knew was there. You will know freedom like you’ve never known it before, because just like the journey lives inside of you, so to lives the rewards! There’s a shiny new life waiting for you just over the horizon. Don’t you want to see it?

 

ONWARD TO FREEDOM!!!

 

Chuck

Back when I quit, I spent a lot of time prepping for this last quit. In fact, this was the first time where I really did prep for my quit. I’d had other quits before, only to relapse. I made it a year once, but was addicted to the patch for six months out of that year.

 

And that time when I relapsed, it was because of a person dying. Now, how ridiculous is that? Poisoning my body in order to honor one who died? The madness of addiction! Well, after that relapse, I smoked for another fifteen years before this quit.

 

The one thing different this time was that I prepped hard for this quit. I knew that the fear that I felt when I first thought of quitting must not be there when I put out that last cigarette. I knew that I had a war on my hands and wanted to be sure that there was no uncertainty there when I began.

 

I analysed my reasons for smoking and made sure that my reasons for quitting were firmly embedded in my mind before I put out that last cigarette. And I knew that before I could succeed, I had to find myself. I had to know the internal workings of my own mind better than I ever knew them before.

 

I took that prep time very seriously, knowing that a strong foundation is a must in order to really complete the journey. I did a lot of internal thinking and yes, I used my visualization as a tool both during my quit and my prep. I got to know my addiction very well. What made the old enemy tick.

 

And one by one, before my quit I took away the addictions power over me by using examples to teach my mind what it was going to be like in the future. Don’t get me wrong. It was still tough on those first days, but somehow it wasn’t surprising.

 

And when a person isn’t blindsided by the addictive side of the brain, the chances of success improve tenfold! But all of the prep in the world won’t work unless deep inside of us we have a burning desire to see the future rather than the discomforts of our quits.

 

When it’s more important to see a clean and healthy future then it is to smoke, then we’re ready. When we can see ourselves in the world and in our daily lives smokefree, then we’re ready. When we understand that freedom is the most important thing that we can ever achieve, then we’re ready.

 

And those of us here at EX are ready to help you when those first hard days hit. To help you stay on track and remind you of why you want to quit. EX has been a Godsend for me and it will be for you to, so long as you take that first step.

 

So do what you must to feel comfortable that when you quit, you really can stay focused on the freedom in the future. That’s part of what makes quitting so hard. That all of the rewards lie ahead. Look to those happy days that you are creating right now, even as you go through the discomfort. You know you’re worth it. You know you can do it. Keep looking ahead and soon you’ll be on the other side of this horrible addiction. I look forward to your success!

 

ONWARD TO FREEDOM!!!

 

Chuck

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