When we first get past the fear that comes with the idea of quitting and see the idea of of being smokefree as a new possibility in our lives, or something that we might be able to achieve if we work for it, we begin to see through the lies of our addictions. It’s a time of discovery, though most of what we discover is the reality of what we did to ourselves and to be honest, I think the journey begins right then, on that first day of clear thinking. That day where we set aside the fear of change long enough to see the possibilities. To glimpse freedom for the first time.
Perhaps it was something that changed in our lives that got us to first consider the possibility of freedom. That was the case for me. In my case as many of you know, it was the endless coughing every morning, trying to get my lungs to function right while at the same time having a cigarette hanging out of my mouth. Even that was a wake up call that took me a while to see. But like most of us here, I did eventually allow myself to see through the addiction. To understand what I had done to myself and that I could blame no one for my own failings.
For me,this was the first point of acceptance for my quit. The moment that I actually “entertained” the idea of quitting. I realized I had to accept the fact that I must make this monumental change in my life to reach a better one, even though in the beginning, I personally had no idea what that better life would look like. I’d been addicted for so long that I just couldn’t quite wrap my mind around the concept of freedom from addiction.
And so I continued on, but now, something had changed. There was always this nagging thought in the back of my mind every time I lit another cigarette until I finally accepted the fact that I might actually quit.
That was my second lesson in acceptance. It was during my preparation, as I learned the enemy that I had built within my very soul that I realized what the foundation of my freedom would be. Acceptance for you see, quitting is very much about this one thing. We have to accept change in both our lives and our very minds and on top of that we have to convince ourselves that this is the change we really want even as the addict within screams at us, telling us that change is a horrible thing!
And so from the very first internal fight that I had, I knew that acceptance was the key to freedom. That if I could accept the world as a nonsmoker and see that vision instead of what I always saw as reality before, then there was no stopping me!
Sure, it takes a little time to learn how to win this war. And yes, it’s a hard road at first because when we’re addicts, seeing freedom is really hard.
I know there was a point in my quit where I’d tipped the scales in my favor. That I no longer feared change. That I’d accepted freedom as my new reality. That was the day that I knew I’d be free forever so long as I never lost sight of the fact that in order to change, we first have to accept both what we don’t like about our current situation and what we want to do to change it.
And with each new acceptance comes a renewed belief that this illusive freedom that we seek is just around the corner. Waiting for us to know that this is the life we want for ourselves. It’s within all of us to accept change. All we have to do is prefer that change over what our lives currently are.
So if you’re currently thinking about quitting, go for it! If your already on the path, continue to find ways to accept your new reality because in the end, it brings freedom and a kind of peace that I never would have believed was attainable had I not chosen so long ago to believe this new world existed and to understand that I fought for it and no one can ever take that away from me! I created the addict within my mind piece by piece and in the end, I had to dismantle it piece by piece for you see, I wanted freedom more than I wanted slavery and once I accepted a new life of freedom my focused changed forever!!
Never give up and never give in!! The rewards are incredible!!
ONWARD TO FREEDOM!!!