SMOKINCHOICES (and other musings)

Stop Smoking P.S.

Discussions recently have persisted around the concept that I have defended relating to the close adherence to significant steps of this “Stop Smoking – FREE plan.”  It is not that I wish to be ‘close-minded’ – it is that I have spent literally 20 years fooling around with accepted plans and programs which were indeed capable of leading me through the various steps in order to quit (as I am sure, any of them could do), but for me, they were not up to the task of strengthening ME to the point that I could do the quitting and make it stick.  Something was lacking.   While I could not figure it out back then, I believe that I have since, discovered my main problem – I didn’t really want to give up the cigarettes.  I felt I should. It was the right thing to do.   But my God, how I loved to smoke, even with friends dying from lung cancer  Perhaps any of the plans would have served me better, if my thinking had been in the right place.  Well, it wasn’t,  and I almost didn’t have a chance to avert disaster.  I used to catch more than my share of colds and often, pneumonia.  I seemed prone to this Perhaps people just accept these things and justify them.  (It runs in my father’s family) Maybe it was the fates, my guardian angel – or just my time,  but when a friend told me about this final plan that I had not tried and told me that they were seemingly having success,  I ventured out to give it a go.   The rest is history and is the story I tell.

I do remember that the plan which served me well and led me to a successful quit was the plan which the American Cancer Society taught during the mid 1960’s.  I quit for 10 years.  I was happy, my family was happy.  So why would I go back?   Well, the answer is pathetic but interesting.  Some of our best friends who had been out of the country and we had not seen them for several years, came for a visit.  When Margaret pulled out a strange pack of smokes and began to light up, I was stunned as I told her “I didn’t know you ever smoked!”  Well, she claimed you can hardly call this smoking.  These are “Honey-Rose specials” bought only in England.  She offered me one across the table.  My husband almost lost it.  Margaret said these were rose petals, steeped in fruit juices and cured in honey (or vice-versa) and one wouldn’t really call it smoking.  Before she left that day, she left the pack with me.  When I was alone, I would go smoke one.  Then a day or so later, another one. Margaret had said there was no nicotine in these – I donno.  But as the American Cancer Society says there is both a physical and mental part to quitting the nicotine addiction.  And for me, with ten years under my belt I went down the tubes with that pack of Honey-Rose Specials.  That’s all it took for me to get back in the saddle and hooked like I was never off in the first place.   In no time, I was up to 2 packs a day and developed my old cough and sinus trouble and post nasal drip.  All the usual good stuff.  After all my times of quitting for varying periods, it was always that one little cigarette that I would try – just to see how they would taste now.   Very, very slow learning curve.

For anyone who might want to check out online to see what the American Cancer Society has to say about the nicotine habit – I strongly encourage you to read up on it a bit. Go to “www.americancancersociety.org and see their “Guide to Stop Smoking.”  Their advice and information is sound.  However, when you read my plan, you will understand why I cannot agree with the use of nicotine replacement “anything” for it defeats one of the greatest gifts of this plan which is to free one totally from the use of anything outside of self. The tools are effective and they work.  You end up “in control” and you know it. After that first 4-5 days, each passing day becomes easier to handle.  You can feel your own strength building and it buoys you up.  Your own success keeps you going.  There is not the hostility or anger (that I had always had before – because I was fighting it, it wasn’t what I wanted to do.)

There now, one more thing off my chest.   It was suggested that others might like to hear it, so there it is.

Please leave comment or e-mail me.

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