I popped in to check on some of the folks in the Elders group and a 300 days message was in my box. This is why you have to love this group of Elders... because one day I swooped in feeling like my life was going to end and they threw me a donut. No, not the kind you eat. The kind you hang on to when you are in a panic and can't catch your breathe. I remember the last time I needed a donut.
In my case it would be Mrs. Boyle, our local American Red Cross swim instructor, who taught all the local kids to swim for years in the creek that runs through town. We would meet at the swimming hole behind the Baptist Church that Pastor Norkus was in charge of rain or shine, come hell or high water, no matter how cold the water temperature was. Some days there might be 20 littles from the neighborhood on a hot summer day. I was probably somewhere around 5 or 6 years old and learning to tread water. Mrs. Boyle would float you out to "the deep part" and let go of your hands. She would promise us that we could touch the bottom - if you would just put your feet down!!!!!! Cheeky kids, hyperventilating, straining to keep their face above water, flailing arms, grimaces of all out effort. Then one day you actually put your feet down and whoosh! Fear is replaced by the realization that you didn't drown, you're alive, and the power to put your feet down was within you all along. The same time you were learning how to tread water, you learned how to roll over on your back and inflate your lungs with glorious air and keep yourself alive.
At age 11 I picked up my first cigarette and smoked until I was 56. By the time I was 12 the time we spent at the creek was to sneak smoke, not swim all day. And here I am on day 319 because the Elders threw me all the donuts I needed. Along with some tips that were game changers for me like drinking from a straw. I still do. The resource library gave me enough information to sift through at my own pace and it lead me to Allen Carr's audio book. But it's the moments in between that required another donut, and another donut, and yet another donut. All I had to do was show up. No, seriously, that's it. I just had to show up.
Looking back over the last 319 days? The fog cleared from my brain. The veil of nicotine poisoning cleared. I lost 40 lbs. I go to the gym twice a week now. I eat organic including my meats. But best of all, I don't think about it anymore. Every once in a while I smell it and I smile, silently acknowledging my old "friend" who died last August. I can check no on the form. I can stay present in the conversation at a meal because I'm not distracted by looking for my get-away to the after meal smoke or after beer buzz. I don't meet new people secretly hoping they smoke, with relief when they did and disappointment when they didn't. I had no idea how much time I spent with my now dead friend. When I buried her I got my life back. I can kiss my husband for hours if I want with nary a though for my breath.
I had to open my quit app to see how many days I am quit because I stopped counting. 319! But alas, living of life of gratitude (hint hint) also reminded me to check back in and say Thank You to the grease that keeps this site an exceptional support. I tell people who ask about it all the time. Most peeps in my group of August 2018 are doing great! You can too! Don't be afraid to ask for a donut!
Thank you, Elders, for your unwavering support, and the donuts.
All my Love and unending gratitude for each of you. May the Universe bless you with more love, joy, peace and happiness than you can handle.
NOPE after 8/27/2018