ROSE H QUITNET PROFILE
It was early October 2003 and I needed major surgery. In my hospital room after the operation, I went to take a deep breath, and I could not. Terrified, I rang for the nurse… I was in the hospital for a whole week getting breathing treatments and intravenous antibiotics.I was scared… Diagnosed with “Moderate COPD" I quit smoking upon returning home. That first quit was “Cold Turkey".
Six (6) months later I decided that I had my former smoking under control. I said to my husband (who had quit with me) “We should be able to have a few a day… My life is missing something… Before I could say “How do you feel?” He was off in the car to buy a carton of Winston 100’s… I truly thought I could have “just a few a day”.
We all know how that turned out… The first puff of smoke tasted light a lighted match going down my throat. I wailed, “I don’t want to do this!” But, it didn’t take long before I was smoking a pack a day or more!
Years passed and I would get sick and have to stop smoking for a while… Several times Bronchitis appeared. Then COPD Flares” and ER Room trips over I-do-not-remember periods-of-time, I ended up in the hospital again. I was on Intravenous Antibiotics, Steroids and Breathing Treatments again. I was always told I should stop smoking. I would be all weepy in the hospital and then convince myself I could continue smoking as long as I was “smart” about it.
The last COPD Flare proved that I now would need two inhaled medications to be taken every day…Spiriva Handihaler and Advair Diskus. Wow…I could breathe so much better! It was quite a while since I felt my lungs being so very clear… My breathing was excellent, but did I quit? No. My lungs felt totally rejuvenated and I continued to smoke a pack a day or more… I took my COPD medications…
Years passed and I cut down to 10 cigarettes a day, or my breathing became labored. My body was like a clock… every 2 hours I could have one…OMG I would look at the clock a lot because sometimes it was hard to wait those 2 hours… I ended up in the hospital again… This time it was right after a Hurricane and I was really sick! My oxygen level was down to 93 and I needed supplemental oxygen 24/7… My nose was red and extremely sore from that horrible nose-piece/hose connected to the oxygen source on the wall... OMG how could I live like this?
I got better with medication and treatments, despite my despair… and was in Therapy to get me off oxygen and my Physical Therapist said one day, “Let’s go for a walk.” He held a Bible while he asked God to heal me… This is where I got much smarter… Within a week I was off the oxygen and ready to go home. I knew I had to finally QUIT SMOKING! I read Allen Carr’s Book, The Easy Way to Stop Smoking. That book kept coming into my mind… I was still smoking, even though I cut down to 5 cigarettes a day… I now felt guilty…and like a total loser! I looked it up in the Dictionary!
Here is the definition of addiction: a compulsive need for, and use of, a habit-forming substance (such as heroin, NICOTINE, or alcohol) with well-defined physiological symptoms upon withdrawal; a persistent compulsive use of a substance known by the user to be harmful…
FINALLY… almost two decades after I thought I could have just a few a day… On August 12 2018, I mashed out a cigarette and went inside… It did not take long for me to believe that I needed help from God… Tears came to my eyes and I begged for help… I was craving and my breathing was awful! Believe me, when I say, “When you cannot breathe, nothing else matters!” That is the American Cancer Society slogan and I was living it!
I expected it to be hard, and it was… The first 3 days sometimes passed minute-by-minute. But after that it became more “normal” each day. I realized my prayer was answered! Before long I had a whole month of smoke free days. I smoked for over 40 years and now I did not need to smoke... God gave me my own miracle. The key to success for me was to ask God for help and then do it!
It is very easy to quit smoking! Just do NOT BEG, BORROW or BUY another pack and light one! Don’t wait as long as I did to quit... Smoking is the leading cause of COPD.