Time to annoy everyone again. I have completed my field training and returned home yesterday evening. To provide a more chronological sequence of events, I'll start with the attached picture (Red man to me, perhaps red woman or person to you) .
I'm not normally the artsy type, prior to me leaving for my trip, I took a day off and headed to a local museum with the family. There was Lego art on display. It was kind of cool (yet boring) as the guy (can't remember his name) reproduced famous paintings such as Starry Night. We were nearly at the end of the exhibit and I came across the attached piece; I was wowed and thought "I understand art, that is me." I felt like I was looking in the mirror and I was the Red Man, the grey, smoke like hands, trying to maintain a hold on me. In that moment, I realized, I'm out in front of the hands and they are powerless against me. It is my choice to continue forward into the clear open, or to turn and return to the smoky abyss I was in. Furthermore, for every occasion that occurs that reminds me of my past addictions that I endure with strength, promise, and joy, I feel another hand slip off and I resonate a brighter red as the momentum and energy gained feeds the light within.
The following day I left for training. I knew there were several tests ahead, each would provide its own unique challenge. The drive, perhaps many would agree, is a place where I would normally smoke a lot. My first 2 hour trek was very lonesome. I was thankful I spent a lot of time in the car with my family the day prior, while I would have an urge every 15-20 minutes, they were not as strong as the day prior. I made it to my rendezvous point, one less hand upon me. The next 9 hours of driving was with my friend, who I previously disclosed to that I had quit. Though we drove into the dark of the night, I felt brighter than ever.
Arriving at training, I ran into many friends that I had not seen in a while (many that I only see once a year). Smoking has a high prevalence in the military still, something I often thought of as an occupational hazard. Many of my friends still smoke however, when we linked up, I would let them know I no longer smoke (normally as they were lighting up). Some would move away from me, which I would tell them, "I'm all right, you can smoke around me." This after all is when we would normally socialize. Some would state how they would like to quit, and we talked about that. One friend I think is ready to quit, and I hope he will soon do that. Based on previous recommendations, I brought Allen Carr's Easy way to quit smoking, I told him if I finished reading it before we leave, I would give it to him (didn't realize that broke a rule at that point). I, despite Allen's rules, gave him the book and hopefully we will see him here this upcoming week.
The first couple of days at training were like the first couple of days of quitting. There were many deap seated triggers and I was glad that I was a few weeks separated from my quit (2 weeks to be exact). My "cravings" shot up from a couple to a dozen plus. I thought deeply about each of these, and I realized how illogical they were, there isn't any nicotine in my system, and I have no "need" to smoke. I let my squad of people know I quit, as the good friend I traveled down with had a task that took him away from me for the duration. One smoking member of my squad took pride in my quit (that all did, but her especially) and boasted for me! My only hope is she receives enough energy from this top start her own quit.
I'm now over the 30 day mark. My light is bright and continues to shine greater daily. EX has reminded me that I am now a Red Man in No Man's Land...
Once more into the fray,
Into the last good fight I'll ever know.
Live and die on this day...
Live and die on this day...
This is my permanent quit, my final scene, the fight to end it all. Stay smokeless my friends!