Don't worry. I'm not thinking about it in the "Dang. I really
People always ask how I quit. I always say "I put down the cigarettes. And I just didn't pick them back up." This statement is true. I quit cold turkey, and pretty easily, I might add. But there's more to it than that. So here it is.
Ten years. I was a smoker for ten years. That's a decade. And when your entire life span is not even 2.5 decades long, that's astounding. I started smoking at the age of 13. And I quit at the age of 23. I know 13 sounds so young, but believe it or not, most of the smokers I know now started around that age. Scary, huh?
I didn't begin smoking because of peer pressure. Nobody was in a huge group surrounding me pushing cigarettes in my face, saying I could only be cool if I smoked. In fact, most of my friends who smoked when I was 13 wouldn't want to waste one of their precious hard-earned (stolen from parents) cigarettes on someone who would just end up coughing, and wouldn't even inhale the dang thing.
Nope. I started smoking to be what my 13 year old brain thought of as ironic. It doesn't make much sense (hindsight) so I won't bore you with the details, but I thought it was kinda fun, so I figured "Sure. We'll try this. No big deal."
Thus began the love affair with those white little sticks of tobacco-y goodness. I loved smoking. I mean - I LOVED it. So many of my fondest memories involve smoking, and a great majority of my social group are smokers. I loved the way it felt I breathed the smoke in. It was amazing. The only thing I didn't love was the smell. But the more you smoke, the more you become immune to it. Amazing. Ahhhh.
Then, about a year ago, the strangest thing happened. I can't explain it. I've never heard of this happening to anyone else, though it might have, I don't know. I couldn't smoke in direct sunlight anymore. If I was outside, and not in the shade and I tried to smoke, I would get a migraine. I'm talking, out on your behind, curled up in the fetal position, unable to open your eyes migraine. Weird, I know. SO I solved the problem by smoking in the shade.
But then, I started to get sick if I smoked while standing. I would feel all nauseated. Then it got worse. I couldn't stand right away after I finished. So many times I would come back into the house after a cigarette, and have to lay down on the living room floor and try not to throw up. I asked my friends if any of them ever went through this, and nope.
So, that love affair I was talking about? It started to disappear. It's hard to love something that makes you feel like that. But I just so USED to it. Plus, my roommates smoked, my boyfriend smoked, my friends back home smoked,my coworkers smoked. I wanted to quit, but everyone knows that you just CAN'T DO IT.
There was my problem. I was so convinced I would fail, that I didn't even try. Six months I wanted to quit. Talked about quitting. In the future. Someday. But not today.
Finally I made up my mind. I was leaving Hawaii, I was going to Africa, starting a new life, getting married. What better time than that? So I did it. Cold turkey, but with almost an expectation of failure. I just knew the cravings were right around the corner, and they would come and attack me. And I wouldn't be strong enough to say no. Willpower has never been my strong suit.
But they didn't. I wish I could say I was lying. I sound like I'm lying. I mean, who smokes for ten years, and then doesn't crave a cigarette? And then I realized somewhere along the way, putting up with being sick for something I "LOVED" had made me not love it anymore. In fact I hated it. I wanted nothing to do with smoking. I still don't. I hate being around it. I hate looking at old pictures of myself smoking. I really just want to smack that girl.
It was easy for me. Once I decided to do it. But like I said earlier, I've never heard of anyone else having that reaction to smoking. I didn't for 9 years. I needed that to get me to stop. Back in the days when I loved smoking? No way would I have been able to do it. So even though it's easy for me, I am in awe of those who accomplish quitting when it's not so easy.
Sorry for the novel. :) Just had it on my mind, and thought I'd share.