Still Here

Blog Post created by cob321 on Apr 8, 2019

Just piping in to say I am still here on my 34th day. It has been interesting. Had to travel for a wedding, and some of your know that I am grieving the loss of my marriage. So that was tough. I was probably the only traveler in history who couldn't wait to get out of Hawaii! I was with a lot of friends who smoked, and as I mentioned, we also use tobacco ceremonially, and I was able to not smoke, and be around them. That was a good confirmation of commitment for me. After getting home, I traveled again for a family funeral, and again didn't smoke. 


At one point at the wedding I was so distraught that I asked my friend for tobacco and decided to smoke - I needed something to stabilize me. I lit it, and just couldn't inhale. Blessed myself with the smoke, made a prayer. And put it down. That was also really helpful even though hard. It was a great lesson and understanding as since then, almost daily that urge comes up, over and over, even after a month, and I can recall that experience and know that I just can't smoke, and so somehow, I have to find a way to deal with the urge and the feelings and the grief and loneliness and other feelings that are coursing through me. A lot of mediation lately, and often tears and sadness; sometimes shifting view or distracting, maybe one too many coffees or pieces of chocolate, or calling a friend to burn their ear of again. 


Today, the weather is changing. Springtime is recalling memories of my relationship this time last year when we were traveling to a piece of land we have to build a small house, and all the good times. I think is is a complexly woven withdrawal as I give up my two best friends - my wife and tobacco. I'm accepting that it will take time to have the experiences of loss and lament, to face the loneliness in each revisit to experiences where those two would have been key companions, and then time to have new experiences of rediscovery and normalization, to get used to this new life without those companions and all of the grounding and meaning they brought to my life. I don't know how long that will take. But for the time being, I am not smoking and I am grateful for that.


For anyone newer than me, here's a reflection. I have been smober for a little over 30 days and 1,000 nights. In other words, the moments themselves - minutes, hours, days, nights - can seem eternal and even unbearable. But if you get through, they pass, and they add up. Now, on the other side of month 1, it seems to have gone by pretty fast. Didn't feel like that at the time, but it does. And more so, that's the story of our lives. Whatever you do or don't do adds up and the time goes by quicker than you can watch it. This forum is about being smoke-free, so we'll keep it to that, but I would imagine there is also some benefit to quitting that would enhance your dreams and desires for your life. Not smoking today is a beautiful contribution to whatever you are truly yearning for in life. It's hard - no joke. We played then, we pay now, and then (as our elders here promise us) we get free. Keep moving towards that freedom, even when you can't see the road ahead. It's out there. If I can grieve 3 recent deaths, the loss of a marriage I didn't want to lose and stop smoking all at the same time, you can do it. It's possible! I believe in you.