I'm sure glad June is over! I finished up the last of five 3-day trips, back-to-back, with a transcontinental red-eye that arrived in DC at 5:58am. I flew 15 days in a row. I went to my condo to sleep for a few hours, then back to the airport to catch a flight home to the Oregon Coast. I have SIX DAYS OFF!!!!
Flying over the Cascade Range as we approached the Portland airport, we got a nice view of Mt Hood, which is the fourth highest peak in the range. I took the picture below.
Every time I see Mt. Hood, I am reminded of the majesty of this earth of ours. And of the feeling of breathing in cold, crispy, fresh mountain air. And even though the only air available to me at that time is icky recirculated airplane air, I take a deep, deep breath. I fill up my lungs, taking as much air in as I can. I hold my breath for a few seconds, then I slowly blow it out. And it feels so good to be able to do that!
Before I quit smoking, I couldn't have taken a "deep" breath, much less a "deep,deep" breath. And when I tried, it always ended with me coughing. And, demented as it may be, the coughing reminded me that I couldn't wait to land so I could smoke.
But things are different now. I quit smoking four years ago. I gave my lungs a second chance. They are healing every day. Now, when we drive up Mt. Hood, I can take in huge breaths of cold, fresh air.
They are wonderful cleansing breaths that give me a sense of calm, that help me to relax, and remind me that my stresses are mostly small ones, self-created and will eventually resolve themselves.
But, wait, aren't those the things that I used to insist that smoking did for me? Make me calm? Relax me? Solve my problems? These are the lies of addiction that we tell ourselves.
And you have the power to change that for yourself and improve your life. You CAN quit. It isn't easy at first. It requires some preparation, some reading, some thinking adjustments. The improvements in the beginning of your Quit are so small at first that you may not notice them. But every single day, every hour, every minute that you are not smoking, you are healing your body and your brain.
So take a deep cleansing breath. And be proud of yourself for taking control of an ugly addiction that USED to have control of YOU.
You can do this. Yes, I'm talking to YOU.