Guilia asked members what made you decide to quit. Realized when I answered, it had turned into more of a dissertation blog than an answer; so here I am.
Mine was a 1-2 punch. My daughter was graduating from med school in the Caribbean and I needed to be smoke free and HEALTHY for her graduation, or couldn't attend. A full day of non smoking travel from California to the Virgin Islands, plus no place I could 'hide and smoke' once I got there. She would have been MORTIFIED if anyone saw me smoking (or smelled it) and expressed that in great lengths to me, sometimes angrily. Rightly so.
I had mostly been a closet smoker ; didn't smoke too often out in public, but still A SMOKER.
A lot of people didn't know I smoked.
Only those extremely close to me.
Or so I thought.
Even with all the Febreeze, incense, oils, and perfume, they could probably still get a whiff of tobacco.
I kept putting off 'the quit' date I had set for myself each month as the grad date came closer and my anxiety with quitting escalated, so I smoked even more. Vicious circle.
Then I got pneumonia.
Wake up and smell the coffee!
Karma is a bi$ch and all that.
I really thought I was dying. Have never been so sick in my life. Was probably a blessing in disguise really.
The cough (OMG!!!) that accompanied it plus trying to breathe, was excruciating--- I was sure I had cancer or advanced emphysema and would be dead or on a breathing tube the rest of my life and wouldn't see my daughter graduate.
The shame I felt for letting my addiction get that far was overwhelming BUT I was STILL smoking like an idiot, not my usual pack and half day but still puffing.
How stupid is that??!
Addicts do stupid and dangerous things to themselves.
The accompanying depression regarding the whole scenario was insurmountable for me.
With that thought and being so sick , I made a 2 week quit date window and vowed to my daughters and myself I was quitting FOR GOOD and would be well enough to go to grad and snorkel and swim, do all things Caribe without any issues.
I cried. I prayed. Everyday.
But d--n, I loved those menthol 100s.
I loved the menthol as much as the d--n nicotine.
They not only tasted good but had me fooled that I needed them to get thru this thing called life.
'They' understood me.
'They' were always 'there' for me.
What a bunch of malarkey!!
Nicotine addiction will do that to you.
Hijack and control your thoughts to keep smoking.
I looked into residential treatment centers for nicotine addiction. Yes I did---lolol. I didn't truly believe, trust, or love myself enough to be successful in my quit.
How sad is that??
Addict brain thinking.
I was desperate! I thought if I could make it for 30 days at this point in my life without smoking, I would never consider picking up another cigarette, but felt I needed a structured, educational based lock up facility to be successful. Take away the smokes, restrain me if need be, and lock me up for 30 days!
Unfortunately, insurance doesn't cover residential nicotine re-hab (which I think is terrible btw ,drug and alcohol is covered) but that's for another story regarding insurance companies.
So I started googling smoke cessation support groups and EVERYTHING I could read on nicotine addiction; came across this group with their amazing group of elders and members--- and never left. I'm coming up on my 2 year forever quit next month. Although I do have damage-- mild COPD, I feel good, exercise everyday, eat clean, have a new lease on life and have the respect from my daughters.
I KNOW I would not have been successful in my quit without the amazing support of the elders (ty ty ty! <3 ) and the members on this site.