I have been feeling extremely low this week. I am having difficulty sleeping, but can hardly bring myself to get up either. I am not really hungry and in general feel unbelievably sad. I cried so much the last 2 days that my eyelids are swollen this morning. Some background- I am 52 yrs old and have smoked about a pack a day for 36 yrs. I have attempted to quit a couple times before, but always made excuses to give back in within a few days. My husband chain smokes and my oldest daughter who has alcohol addiction problems and mental health issues also smokes. I have wanted to quit for so long...I hated myself for smoking and my 3 other children have pleaded with me to quit. I work in healthcare and constantly had to hide my smoking and avoided people and situations where I could not smoke. I recently got diagnosed with high blood pressure and had developed a cough after a bout with the flu that I could not shake. I finally decided on my birthday 2weeks ago to quit smoking for good and have stuck with it ever since. I started the patch and use sunflower seeds, gum, straws, hard candy, etc to help with my cravings. I'm not saying the first week was easy, but I felt better and very proud of myself. I even decreased my 6 cans of diet soda habit per day for just one can-I always smoked and had soda together so I found I did not even want the soda anymore. After one week of cutting the caffeine and nicotine, my blood pressure went to normal and I lost 5 lbs! I felt confident and relieved that I no longer had to hide and be a phony. I started educating myself on this addiction and found out all my beliefs about needing cigarettes to keep me calm were a myth...the withdrawal between smokes is what made me nervous to begin with!!!
After a week, my daughter who has issues with bipolar, alcohol addiction, etc created a huge crisis that tempted me to smoke, but I got on here and got a lot of support and resisted temptation to light up. I was so proud of myself because she has always been my main "excuse" to keep smoking. A few more days went by and I ran out of patches, From my reading about nicotine addiction, I started thinking maybe I should stop the patch because technically I was still giving my body the drug it wanted and it almost felt like I was cheating. The first couple days were bearable, but by the third day (Friday) I was so emotional and sad that I could not hardly stand it. Yesterday, I was so depressed and kept crying about all the drama going on with my daughter. I know cigarettes can not take the drama away, but I am wondering if I am really this down from that or is it from the nicotine withdrawal? I went out and got my mail today and I got some patches in the mail that the quit help line sent - I did not realize my insurance would cover them. I put one on about an hour ago and I must say I feel a little calmer already. I feel disappointed in myself- kinda like I cheated. I am sorry to keep rambling on. Just need to vent and let everybody know where I am coming from. Has anyone successfully used the patch and maintained quitting after the 8 weeks of stepping down to lower doses? My fear is that I am just postponing "withdrawal hell". Thanks for taking the time to read all this....your support means a lot. Cat 52