Posted by: chiarraigrrl | July 25, 2011

“Smoke free”… :)

So, Saturday morning on sort of a whim I decided to quit smoking. I’d been kind of thinking about it for a while – in a why-am-I-doing-this, I-don’t-even-enjoy-them-any-more sort of a way. Nothing specific, but “eventually” I’d give them up. Then Saturday morning I realised I really didn’t like the way it made me feel – so I enjoyed my last cigarette, and decided not to light another one, looking at it as sort of an experiment: could I do this, and if so, would I feel better if I did? (I have a full pack sitting on the table in the kitchen, untouched, plus the two that were left in the previous pack). It’s been three days now, and it hasn’t been as bad as I was expecting- I was a little stabby Saturday afternoon, but I locked myself into my room with my mp3 player on shuffle and all was well. It’s more a question of creating new behaviour patterns- after dinner I have to remember to go sit on the armchair instead of automatically going outside, or at breaktime at work just get a coffee instead of coffee + nicotine. First thing in the morning over my first coffee I’ve decided to write or draw for those five minutes rather than having that morning cigarette, which is a nice change.

It did get me thinking about one thing, though, that bothers me: all the vocabulary for not smoking any longer is negative, when you’re actually doing a really positive thing for yourself. “Quitting”. “Giving up”. Not to come off all Dr. Phil or anything, but it’s not exactly the life-affirming type of vocabulary you would hope for when taking on this challenge, is it? It sounds more like you’ve done something disappointing rather than choosing to live a healthier life (and no, apart from the little bit in this post I’m not going to become one of those anti-smoking former smokers, I swear). I’d like it better if the vocabulary in common use was more like “emancipated from smoking” or something.

In the meantime, I’m counting my smoke-free hours as if they were hard-won pennies I’m saving up for something special, outweighing the occasional craving by the weight of their mere presence.

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Responses

  1. It is such a great feeling to get through the first three days. I was a smoker for about 3 years while in the Marines. I started on my first deployment thinking it would only be a war thing, but I was one of those that enjoyed smoking. I eventually got married and smoked up a storm on my last deployment before getting out of the military and as hard as I tried to quit while I was getting ready to get out, it wasn’t actually until I got completely out of the Marines that one day I was able to make the decision that I really wanted to quit. It’s such a struggle to go through those hours of not smoking, but at the same time you’re counting them with a joy that you’re free from the hold of something that is something awful for your body. You’ll feel so much better, and once you’ve changed your entire routine, you’ll enjoy your new routine.

    • Thanks for sharing your story! I’m still sort of surprised that I actually decided to do it *now*, but now that I’ve gotten through 3 days I reckon I’m through the worst of it (and no point trying that twice!). 🙂 Looking forward to the new routine…


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