Monday, February 25, 2008

Joe Camel is NOT my friend!

I'm a quitter . . . again. It's embarrassing for me to admit, because I KNOW it's a stupid habit and I know it's smelly and not healthy or wise, but I am a smoker. (Or if I remain strong: I WAS a smoker).

I first started smoking after I turned 21 and spent a considerable amount of time in bars and clubs listening to bands and inhaling everyone else's smoke. My start was odd, I don't remember it being a conscious decision, I just picked one up one day and the habit began.

I have a highly addictive personality. Sometimes I can actually use it to my advantage and addict myself to becoming a SUPER STAR . . . but most the time, not so good, not so healthy.

I have overcome a LOT in my many years and as I age the issues have been less drastic (whew!) BUT why must I always maintain SOME sort of self-destructive behavior? arg!

Anywho. I've "quit" smoking several times in my life. I did officially quit when training for my FIRST MARATHON and raising funds for the American Stroke Association (makes sense, right?) and I managed to stay quit for several years. I had the occasional clove with a friend here and there - a puff at a nightclub, whatevah. But then one day it just came back. With a passion.

My world has made it SO convenient for me to quit. No longer am I surrounded by smoke when I go out - you have to make an effort and find a spot outside to smoke now. Most of my friends have quit. I changed jobs and vowed to NEVER smoke while at work or in front of co-workers. It's flippin expensive and getting moreso every single day. I'm surrounded by health articles and ads telling me it's not healthy. I continued to train, hike and workout. All good things.

And yet, if I have a pack . . . I'm gonna smoke it. And I love it. And I look forward to getting home and having one. It's ridiculous really. Like aging itself hasn't been tough enough on my ego, I have to speed the process of advancing wrinkles? I've been "quitting" since last year - and refuse to buy 2 packs when they have a special promotion, because every pack is my last pack.

Anyway. I'm ready. I am now 7 days free. And I've almost overcome the desire to kick people in the teeth when they smile at me and say "hi" :-) My thoughts are still obsessed with the process and the emptiness and the fact that I am without. But that will pass (soon, right?). I actually TRIED the full health route and started the diet AND the quit program at the same time last week . . . NOT good for the well-being of the general public.

Maybe the diet can start NEXT week . . .

I made it through Friday night - a bottle of wine and some house chores. That was difficult, because I always feel I deserve it as a wind-down after a tough week.

Finally Saturday, I started to feel strong - I had made it through the week. Then the mail came. Oh look! A package from Camel cigarettes (I signed up once at a bar and got a FREE pack and they always remember me). Of course, the smart thing to do would have been to just THROW it out. But what if they gave me something cool inside? So I opened it. Nice packaging and then as I opened the flap - I see a FLIPPING BOX OF CIGARETTES! My mind was racing . . . . what to do? Have one?? Run over to my neighbor and give it to her smoker roommate? I started rationalizing. It was the classic cartoon battle of the angel on one shoulder and the devil on the other. Even my dogs were staring at me in alarm because I was clearing having an issue with something in my hands . . .

Long story short. My logic told me - they CAN'T send free cigarettes in the mail, can they? I shook the package and it was light. Inside the pack was a coupon. WHEW. I threw it all away and resisted my urge to haul ASS to Circle K.

All I know is Joe Camel is NOT my friend and this is another week. I can DO it.

My Quitting Aids: Dum Dums and a Chew Toy


cheapblueguitar said...

Yay! I am so proud of you for quitting. I remember how hard it is to quit. SO hard, but you can do it!

Geggie said...

Congrats! You can do it!!

Unknown said...

Thanks guys - I'm over a week now . . . so past the hump (HA! another Camel joke!)

To quote the Waterboy - I can DEW it :)