I quit!

I had a milestone in January. I achieved a full year of being a quitter, quitter of cigarettes that is. Its such an unbelievable thing to me. I clearly remember all the times when I was smoking that I would wish that I magically just didn't smoke because the thought of quitting smoking was just too daunting, a completely unreasonable, unattainable goal.

Now, well, I did it. It's cool. It's weird. It's quite the feat.

Watching TCM was killer at first, mildly annoying now. Man those old time movie stars could make having a smoke look good and do they ever smoke alot! It's helpful there's no commercials so there's no time for a smoke break anyway. Mmmm...just picturing them.

I love smoking. I cannot believe cigarette companies can't come up with some kind of cigarette that's good for us. A smoke that's filled with omega 3's and antioxidents that would be as healthy as an apple a day.

That'd be sweet.

I don't miss being controlled by cigarettes. Thinking ahead, conserving, planning, hiding, freezing, stinking, craving...oops, to be totally honest the cravings I do still get now and then but nothing like in the beginning. I never thought I would get to a place where I could go a day without craving a smoke, but I have. Course, I am dying for one right now because I am thinking about it but these days, it's easily controlled. Huge, deep breaths work as well as anything.

I didn't use any smoking cessation products. Unless you count the gum I used a few times. It really burns the throat though and the one I used didn't exactly taste good so, no worries about becoming dependant on that.

When I was smoking, I knew there was no pill or hypnosis or laser treatment that would help me quit. I wished there was, but I knew that I liked smoking tooooo much. It had to be me all me, my stubborn, determined, resilient self that would have to step up to the task and really want it and suffer for it. I also knew wanting it for myself wasn't enough but when my son said to me, "Mom, now will you quit smoking?", that did it. When I said yes, that I would quit now, I knew I had to.

It helped to know I was perfectly capable of getting cancer. I think there are some people who are immune and couldn't it be possible I was one of them? Possible perhaps, but not the case. I was lucky enough to find and treat an invasive cancer before it invaded so who was I to keep on keeping on when the universe and the medical community were intent on keeping me alive, for now.

I think that was another big factor that contributed to my success in quitting smoking. Shame. I was quite ashamed to be smoking while all these people were working to get rid of my cancer and it felt real good to say I was a quitter at my radiation sessions, oncologist and surgeon appointments. Everyone was super supportive and really never appeared judgemental. Very cool people.

SO, if you're trying to quit, or trying to stay quit, keep up the hard work cause hard work it is!

If you know someone who is quitting, give them tons of support and encouragement. It really is a big deal to quit or try to quit.

If you've tried and haven't quite succeeded yet, don't be too hard on yourself!! It's ok to try again if you want, to try as many times as you want. If you mess up and have one smoke, just start over!

Quitting smoking is as difficult as it is enjoyable to those of us who love smoking but just remember, if I could do it, anyone can.

Deep breaths.