Good day EXER’s!!
There was a time when I was a different person. One who cherished life, but my future, not so much. This was obvious to me because I was slowly killing myself and somehow didn’t seem to care. Day after day I would continue the ritual, never believing that there was another way. For the longest time, I never sought a way out because somehow I felt that I was content in this life just the way it was.
You see, I was an addict. And really, the definition of an addict describes how I was very well:
to devote or surrender (oneself) to something habitually or obsessively
I hadn’t really devoted myself to nicotine so much as I surrendered myself to it. And in the end, I did become obsessive with smoking to the point where I was chain smoking just to get whatever it was that thought was seeking.
It wasn’t really because I was a depressed person. I believed I was perfectly content. In fact, in those days the only things that would anger me was any challenge to my addiction, including my own minds challenges to myself. If I couldn’t smoke because I was working, of course the urges would start generating a kind of anger within me. I always tried not to lash out at people but there was more than one time that a person would tell me, “Man, you’re being kind of a jerk. Do you need a cigarette?”
My response was usually even more anger, mainly because I was craving a cigarette. My point being that even in these times when everything seemed so “normal” the reality is that we had to deal with craves long before we ever quit. I know every one of us has had these experiences where we couldn’t smoke when we wanted to many times.
Thing is, when we’re ready to quit, there’s a kind of fear and I think a lot of that fear comes from those times when we didn’t have our fix when we needed it. Even though we knew we could eventually smoke, we still had to deal with the physical crave and as such, we experience a lot of what we’d experience when we quit. The only difference is before we quit, we know we can have another one eventually.
I know it was because I had symptoms caused by smoking that I was able to create a crack in my addiction. And as soon as that crack appeared, the physical response was debilitating fear! This was the signal that my brain sent to me at the thought of quitting, as if I was looking off a thousand foot cliff and thinking about jumping.
I had to figure out a way to get past that fear so that I could actually quit and so I faced it head on. That’s why I did practice quits. Many hours of not smoking so I could understand what would happen to me when I did quit, and more importantly how I would successfully deal with the craves. That’s why I studied for so many hours, learning my addiction, and the many days with the pack tracker, knowing the entire time that this would all culminate in a quit. And I hoped that it would be my last quit. So far, so good!!
My point is that I was as addicted as a person can get on cigarettes. I mean, I don’t think one could do much worse then lighting one cigarette with the cherry of the last one. And also, I had to be as scared of quitting as anyone can be and yet here I am loving the freedom that I took the time to create.
Sure, it took some time and learning but when I started my quit, I had reached my goal : NO FEAR!! I wanted to include links to the blogs I wrote on those very days in case anyone wanted to really see my thinking on those last days of preparation and the first quit day.
And since those days, it’s been over seven years of freedom!! If I could do this then I KNOW you can! Learn your addiction, prepare, rid yourself of the fear of quitting and ride into the freedom that you know you want so badly!! It’s a beautiful world on the other side of addiction. All you have to do is get there . . . . .
ONWARD TO FREEDOM!!!