Quitting, But Not Giving Up (Part II)

Part I Here

Today marks my third full day of not smoking cigarettes! I crave them more than ever now, but I try to think of something else and that usually takes the urge away. Being around my friends doesn’t make my addiction any less painful, but it disciplines me. Ordinarily being around my friends doesn’t stress me, but if we’re bored, we smoke. I have found that when I don’t smoke, I’m irritable & just not a “fun” person to be around. Something I’d like to work on with this journey is patience because I know at some point the physical “need” to smoke will be history.  My goal is to find more options for handling stress and boredom.

When I first attempted to quit smoking and failed, I went over to an old friend, Mike’s, house. He used to smoke about 4 8cigs a day. Mike told me that he quit bogies, so of course I wanted to hear about his ride to redemption. This ended up with him telling me he quit cold turkey. His girlfriend (a Heavy Cigarette Smoker) was complaining about how hard it is to stop; he ended up going a month without tobacco and she smoked less. Overall I think he and HCS (heavy cigarette smoker) have something to be proud about even though she hasn’t gotten to quit yet. It’s not just about all or nothing.

Now I can contrast my experience with Mike with my experience with another friend I’m frequently with. He smokes about 5-10 bogies a day and he is also Mike, but that’s not going to work for this story, so I will call this Mike “Mitch.” Now let me tell you that Mitch is someone that’d come over my house almost every morning in the summer just to smoke a cancer stick with me. Gross, I know, yet that’s not even the worst smoking story with him. When I was first trying to extinguish my smoking hobby, of course I was with my friends to pass time. Mitch was one of my close friends back then. I was going about 8 hours into not smoking when Mitch asked me to buy cigs. I was trying to be a “better” me by not smoking at all. Mitch was laying temptation before me when he asked me to buy for him. I succumbed and threw away two days of tolerance, resistance, strength along with my rite of passage to overall good health. Peer pressure and addiction led to that relapse, but now it’s been four days without touching a single cigarette. And I am not going shopping for anyone else.

-Hadiya Samuel