3 weeks on..

So I’m sitting here  rather jealously watching my daughter and her friends splashing merrily in the paddling pool when the urge to write overcame me.

Today for the first time in about 15 years for 90% of the day I have managed to breath, and when I say breath what I mean is this .

My lungs are not filled with tar, nicotine or any of the 2000 chemicals every cigarette has, my breath has not been compromised by the cancer stick that I, only 3 weeks ago honestly believed I could not live without.

There have been many times I have given up, never for more than a week or 10 days  though before, the addiction inside me always won. I would tell myself that I would buy a packet (£10.70 a pack .. a pack a day … you do the maths ) only have one and then throw the packet away, looking back now I realise how  warped the thinking of an addict is, it was never one, because once those receptors in your brain are awakened they don’t go back to sleep, it is a repetitive cycle, the promising yourself that this would be the last one, the swearing to anyone who would listen that just one more , only one more . The ridiculous waste of money of buying a packet smoking one then depositing the rest of the packet in my neighbors letter box as I kid myself that I would never smoke again and he can have the rest.

Allan Carr’s teachings that you are not giving up at all, are so correct, giving up implies loosing something, having something of value taken away, while the word quitting can have positive connotations. When you quit smoking you only gain, as I am experiencing now, you gain breath, your skin becomes clearer, your mood is better and so much more.

The messages Smokers tell themselves, it helps relieve stress, it helps relax you etc are so false, it adds to our stress because as soon as we put one out we stress about when we can have the next one, so leaving that restaurant to light up in the freezing snow may feel like stress relief but only because we have been stressed about when we can smoke !

 

Sure I wake up in the morning and my first thought is still “ I need a smoke “ and there are times my family know to keep out my way because those smoking monsters and giving it one last go, rearing their ugly heads with the strength they have left trying to convince me just one more, but they eventually recede, they know they are loosing the battle.

Smoking addiction is known to be a harder addiction to get over then heroin, which I think is why so many of us believe we can do it, only to return to smoking after.

Having become rather ill a few weeks ago, which was NOT a result of smoking, my outlook on life has changed, this was not a conscious decision, I did not think to deeply about stopping smoking, but the reality of lying in my bed, unable to speak or move my leg seemed to have flicked a switch in my brain, giving me a terrifying glimpse of what can and probably would happen if I continued to smoke .

So my message to anyone out there thinking about quitting, don’t kid yourself that you will have just one more, don’t tell yourself that you will quit in a week or a month or sometime soon, we never know which cigarette will bring on that stroke , heart attack or even worse death.

Do it now.

All my love

sara

 

Giving up!

5 days, 21 hours, 20 minutes… so my quitter app tells.

 

According to my app I have also saved £63.02. I should be laughing my way to the shops by now, instead I am doing everything in my power not to think about smoking…though thinking about it…sitting writing a whole post on the subject may not be the most sensible way to stop obsessing about it.

2 years ago I quit for a week, I do not remember why I restarted but the reason was probably not very interesting – nor worth another 2 years of poisoning my body.

I saw my lovely, wonderful therapist today ( be prepared to hear more about how she has impacted my life in other posts…. you have been warned) and she mentioned that I seemed different.  Well I happen to agree, I feel different, I feel calmer, more level headed, happier, and today it happened I had no money in my purse, now, please understand in the past when I had no money in my purse I would be scrabbling around, emptying out charity boxes, digging deep in to the sofa ( nope…. its a myth that you will find £10000000000 down the back of a sofa) rattaling my daughters money box (disgraceful I know) searching through my husbands pockets (happily that is the only reason I would ever need to search his pockets) to try and find that £10.70 I needed to buy a packet of what my hubby so aptly describes as cancer sticks.

So that’s the good side of it, the dark, gloomy, climb the walls, watch me through your fingers in fright, side of it is , frankly horrendous.

Here, to fire up your imagination is a little synopsis of what it is like to quit smoking:

  1. All pervading, all invading constant thoughts of cigarettes
  2. Anger, the kind that everyone in your immediate and not so immediate surroundings know about…. yup the neighbours may call the police, social services, men in white coats due to the screaming they will hear coming from you.
  3. Coughing
  4. Coughing
  5. Coughing
  6. More coughing
  7. Tiredness
  8. Hunger
  9. Hunger
  10. Hunger

There you go, just a few side effects…but I have realised, smoking is a CON!! A huge CON which trillions of people have fallen for…

Tobacco companies will have you believe smoking is so many things, cool.. hmmm that went out the window when the TV ads with the cute cowboys on horses smoking were banned!

Relaxing, nope… it may feel relaxing, but really you are just anxious, anxious about when the next one will come, anxious about how you can afford it, anxious if you are out with friends …thinking about how and when you can smoke next, Not being able to enjoy Shabbat or Chagim.

So, some advice when trying to encourage someone who has just given up, don’t say “oh I gave up chocolate a few weeks back so know what you are going through”…YOU HAVE NO IDEA WHAT GIVING UP SMOKING IS LIKE ( that’s me shouting at you) do… keep encouraging, do bring gifts..sweets, chocolates, more sweets, more chocolate. Do understand that when we are yelling at you, we are really yelling at the cigarette monster in our heads.

So, here you have it, my first blog post. Its taken me hours to work out how to set up the thing, but not very long to write… I hope you have enjoyed it. Please forward to family, friends, colleges, the postman, random strangers, and please do comment so I don’t feel like a sado because no one has read my blog!

I will…all being well, be back tonight, when I want to talk about guests for Shabbat vs saving money and not having guests.

Hugs and kisses

Sara

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