“Smoking. Quitting smoking. I know I want to quit but something is holding me back.”
This was me almost two years ago now. Every time I lit a cigarette, I was overcome by guilt. I knew I should not be smoking. There was no way this would end well. And yet, here I was . . . denying, denying, denying that voice in my head that said just "stop." What was keeping me from making that choice? Fear. Addiction. Uncertainty. All of that and more.
Was I strong enough for this battle?
I was addicted. I knew that certainly. Nicotine is one of the hardest drugs to kick. I think since it’s somewhat socially acceptable, it makes it even harder to quit. I had dealt with addiction in my family and it was ugly. I didn’t want to be another addict, but yet, here I was. I knew the fight would be lifelong and hard. Was I strong enough for this battle?
I was uncertain about how it would go. How would I handle stress, boredom, anger, fatigue, parties, triggers, and cravings? Would I be miserable and sad? How “sick” would I be with the withdrawals from nicotine? How long would I have to battle this addiction?
Well, I can tell you with utmost certainty that all of this worry was useless. I did get through the very few days of physical withdrawal. I can handle life’s ups and downs and am able to enjoy life without smoking. Cigarettes were not my friends. They were killing me. Once I truly accepted that fact, and it is a fact, that helped me to get through those first few days and weeks. I am still and always will be a nicotine addict. That is a tough one to accept and own. I did this to myself. I can never have just one. Never ever.
QuitNet has played a crucial part in maintaining my quit. The control and conscious choice not to smoke every day is mine and mine alone. But, having the support of this community is huge. I revel in others’ victories and am saddened when they fail. I am constantly reminded to be on guard and to protect my quit. And, if I can help another along his or her quit journey, that’s a good thing.
I am urging, no begging, you to stop smoking. You are stronger than you think you are. Take back your life. It will be the best decision you will make. Guaranteed.