Monday, August 13, 2012

Hard Rock Café - oops - Candy

I’ve been a smoker for 40 years.  I cut down drastically during my two pregnancies and for about a year after each one but didn’t manage to quit.  When my kids were a little older, I tried quitting cold turkey.  It was a totally scary experience for me, but especially for my kids when their calm, peaceful Mommy suddenly became a blue eyed monster with a talent for terrible temper tantrums, creative cussing and a propensity to throw and break things.  Thankfully, throwing the kids never crossed my mind!

This time around, as part of my journey to health, I’m using Chantix to help me quit.  Another reason to be grateful that I’m now receiving state medical assistance!  Chantix does seem to be keeping the monster away – hooray!

I’m on day six of being a non-smoker.  It was surprisingly easy for the first four days and super difficult for the past two as I deal with the deep, deep grief of learning of the tragic death of one of my son's best friends. 

Chantix doesn't magically take away the temptation, but it does make the temptation easier to deal with - until now.  I think I was taking the easy part for granted, because the last two days have been hard.

Until now, staying busy has helped.   Spending less time online has helped.  Sucking on a sugar free hard candy has helped when the urge to smoke has been stronger. 

But not today!   The definition of ‘stronger’ urges is being redefined.  I don’t want to distract myself!  I don’t want to keep busy!  I don’t want to stay away from the computer!  I don’t want to suck on a hard candy!  I WANT A CIGARETTE!!  I want to grieve, cry, rage at the universe - and smoke!

I don’t want to pace the floors, restlessly acting as though I’m lost.  I don’t want to keep reaching for that non-existent pack of cigarettes.  I also don’t want that stale smoke smell.  Or the ashes.  Or the cigarette butts.  I’m tired of being the only smoker at meetings, conferences, gatherings.  And I’m tired of wasting money that I can’t afford to waste.  Smoking is never healthy, but as I get older, the implications for my health worsen.  And forgive my ego, but I don’t want to have those ‘smoker wrinkles’ around my lips and mouth either.  Seriously.

It looks like the second list of ‘I don’ts’ is longer than the first, lol.   I confess to giving in and smoking two cigarettes yesterday.  Those cigarettes were my breaks from crying while I struggled to get a handle on my grief.  

But I'm also determined to forgive myself and continue the journey towards becoming a non-smoker.  I did resist the temptation to run out and buy a pack!  Hard rock candy, here I come.  Cinnamon, butterscotch, mint – take your pick! 

And maybe I’ll stop for a good visualization too; imagining myself as a non-smoker.  Playing through how good it will feel to be a non-smoker; how wonderful it would be to have some money in my wallet.   I’d been wondering how I would be able to replace my clothing as I lose weight…and that extra money in my wallet will go far towards solving that dilemma!

Checking out this poster and other materials available at just might provide some needed encouragement.
 A call out to my support system will help too!  Just hearing someone say ‘I know you can do it!’ or ‘I have faith in you!’ or ‘You’re doing great – keep it up!’  I love how supportive everyone is, both online and off.  Not the judgment that I thought I might get, but pure and simple, unadulterated support.  And it’s wonderful.

As I pop a cinnamon hard candy into my mouth, I know, I just know, that there will be a day seven…One moment, one hour, one day at a time.  One day at a time.


  1. Congratulations Cynthia for starting your journey to become a non-smoker. Let me share with you what I did. I smoked pretty heavily for 50 years ( just imagine I could have bought a house!!) I didn't want to use medication as I think it messes with your head so I used patches. Also I decided the money I would save would be for something really special so I saved my $100 a week and bought my first desk top computer.
    I have been smoke free for six yeas now and don't even miss it. One of the first things I did notice was the lack of time wasting, having to go outside each time I lit up. At this stage in my life its really hard to remember I was ever a smoker.

    Keep on keeping on. It will get easier and it will make you very proud.
    Good luck to you
    Pam Parker

    1. Pam, thanks so much for the encouragement! I'm planning to use the money I save to buy some new clothes as I lose weight following my new nutritional guidelines (10 lbs in 3 weeks isn't bad!).
      I'm in week 2 and it seems harder right now than it has previously, but I've got a good support system - especially on Facebook!

  2. Good luck! My mom's tried to do this a few times so I've seen how hard it can be on a person. She also became quite a bit... moodier, to say the least. Wishing you the best. It's so hard but can be done! Don't give up.

    1. Thanks for visiting from A Life Of Our Own. My memory's not the best (fibro fog), but I recognized your blog as soon as I clicked and saw Chloe's sweet face, lol!
      I really appreciate the encouragement Nessa - thank you :)

  3. Cynthia, I'm sorry for your sorrow and send love and prayers to/for you and your family.


    I'm on Day 6 of Chantix, I don't know that I'll be able to go smoke free tomorrow but I do intend to quit. In the last week I've gone from a pack and a half to 2 packs a day down to less than a pack a day, so it may take me a couple of extra days to stop completely. I'm going to employ EFT (a technique developed by Gary Craig, emotional freedom technique, lots of videos and websites where you can learn about "tapping") and sometimes sub 5 min of dancing to an upbeat tune for smoke breaks. I've been making a point of smoking on the front porch rather than in my house. That has helped me cut down. I don't want to smoke. My house smells better, I smell better, my car smells better. When we recently had company I washed all the curtains in the house and was amazed at how different they looked after I washed "the smoke" out. It kind of brought home what that crap is doing to my body!

    Love the poster!

    I want to quit,but I want to smoke but I don't want to smoke, but I want to smoke, but I don't want to smoke....LOL. I think that finding something else to soothe like a smoke did is going to be a challenge. It was a quick fix and escape.

    Have a wonderful day Cynthia!! <3<3<3

    1. Luna, I was smoking as much as you and it took me a few days to work down to zero cigarettes. I managed to get down to one a day the first week and decided not to be too harsh with myself. A 40 year addiction may take a bit more to kick - and that's okay.
      I totally agree about the smell. My son walked into my room one night and reeked of cigarette smoke - and I'd never noticed it before. I couldn't help but wonder if that was how I smelled too...Yuck!!
      EFT!! Why didn't I think about that?? Off to Youtube to look up some videos, lol!

  4. You can do this Cynthia! I am sending you some warrior power to kick (cigs) butt!


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