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12/19/2013 - 01/24/2014

Dec-19-2013     Sh** really strong trigger. So I know in one of my original posts I said I took a huge paycut to get into a department of my company that I wanted a certain position in and that I really couldn't afford it. Well finally a position I really want and really need came open and I have an interview tomorrow at 1pm. I found out yesterday morning. Was fine trigger wise all yesterday, I'm assuming because I was excited. But then I couldn't sleep last night. I'm running on a few hours of sleep. And I'm just so NERVOUS. I always get nervous before an interview as I'm sure anyone does. But this feels more intense than normal because I don't just want it l...I NEED it and have been waiting seven months for this chance. I know this feeling is just going to intensify the closer it gets. And today I'm just fidgety and nervous and can't stop thinking about cigarettes. I know I don't want one. I know it isn't going to help me. I know all of this. This is just the most intense trigger feeling I have felt since I quit and I'm almost in tears and my palms are sweaty. Ahrg. I just wish I could get the interview over with now. I know I can sell myself well in an interview and I know I am well qualified for this position. I just help but have this irrational fear that I'm going to blow it because I'm so nervous. I'm crawling out of my skin.   -------------------------------------------------------------------------   Dec-20-2013   Just got home from work day. I think it went awesome (but not trying to build it up too big so I dont have a big letdown if I misread any of it.) But we were all laughing the whole time and at the end one of them goes "wow I really had fun in this interview" and then quickly said that she likes all interviews she does but she had fun in this one.   Also, wasnt going to mention the smoking thing in there but apparently (from my fb posts) someone told one of these girls that I quit I guess because she asked right away how my not smoking was going. And we all talked for a little bit about it and I told them how long its been and she said she quit a week after I did or two, and used an ecig I guess but hasnt used that in three weeks now so she hasnt had any nicotine. And we talked about that for a couple minutes. It was awesome.   ------------------------------------------------------------------------   Dec-27-2013   so... I have a second interview on Monday! that means they liked me, but im super nervous. It's with the main manager of the area I am trying to get to. AND it isnt until 2pm. gah   -----------------------------------------------------------------------   Dec-31-2013   well I talked to some people before my interview, which I dont know if it was a good or bad thing, and they told me this lady who is now interviewing me is hard to read and appears very serious and scary. Which scared the crap out of me and then I went in there and it was her and another lady and they were not lying. Very hard to read. I feel like I messed up in a couple places, at least. but I dont know if thats just because I couldn't read her. I have never walked out of an interview and not felt like I rocked it until now. I was glad it was at the end of the day yesterday because afterwords I just wanted to go home and cry or something. They said they would know by the end of the week but that HR are the ones who send everything out.... (and they can take a while)   Just dont feel very good about it anymore.   -----------------------------------------------------------------------   Jan-24-2014   Sorry. A lot has gone on lately. Didn't get the job. Some shady stuff went on and they broke some rules to get certain people who were related into the team like that six month rule. It's all a big political game. Anyway other stuff has happened. Let's all hope I get something else soon as I really have to. Have not smoked but man seeing everyone around me who quit at the new year already smoking again is sad and confusing.   Also my friend who made the bet I couldn't last 28 days or whatever smoked last weekend and then quit again. This was the longest he had gone.   Hope everyone is well just thought I'd check in.

leahcaR

leahcaR

 

11/28/2013

Nov-28-2013   Tomorrow will be 4 weeks for me. I can't believe it. I've never wanted to quit before. I played with it a few years ago for 24 hours to see what would happen with nicorette but it just didn't seem worth it and I did not want to quit. Like anyone else I never wanted to become a smoker...never sat down and decided I was going to become a pack or so a day smoker. One day I just woke up and realized I was and sighed a little and just accepted it. Any time Id even fathom the idea of quitting I'd literally cringe a little and have to quickly wipe the idea from my mind. It seemed way too scary. Then when I decided I was going to quit at the beginning of November I was hoping everything would go smooth in my life for just a little while while I adjusted to the newness of not having cigarettes around. After-all, my life had been semi-smooth for a couple months and I figured it might stay that way for me at least for a month. And I didn't know how I would react if something crazy happened out of the norm right out of the gate. Unfortunately, this was not the case. November, whether I was smoking or not, carried with it the worst four weeks thus far in 2013. From the start. I found it easy to tell myself no and I couldn't have a cigarette. But I will not lie, there have been times, especially lately, where I have felt very tested. 6 months ago I switched depts at my job and took a big pay-cut so that in 6 months I could go to a different area of the new department and make more than i was before and be in a better part of the company than I was before 6 months ago. A job I had been waiting for came up right before my 6 months, which was November 6th, all the managers said since it was the end of October they'd waive the last week or two since I had been excelling at my current job since I started it. They had me very hopeful. Anyway in November I was turned down by someone in a different state that does the HR recruiting for my dept because I fell short of the six months. meaning not only was the job I wanted so close in reach and denied to me even though everyone was fighting for me to be able to, but I was banking on the switch because I took that huge pay-cut and my financial situation has been struggling for six months. So instantly in the beginning of November I started out with something that was very upsetting. Then I wrecked my car, for a ridiculous reason. And realized I was going to be carless for a while (two weeks almost so far) until it gets fixed...but then I'd also have to find 500 dollars lying around to pay for a deductible. Then I find out that someone who I was in a relationship with for about two years and I had broken up with in September had been lying to me all summer and had become a cocaine user...lied to me about it all summer anytime I would ask what was up or why they were changing behaviors. This filled me with a huge rage. Then just a couple days ago (a day after I found out about the ex's cocaine addiction and lying) I found out I wasn't really paying attention to my bank acct this month and not to get into too much detail I severely went over and my next check which included a travel reimbursement check I submitted for the amount of half the deductible is going to be all gone once it hits my acct. so now I am working overtime for the foreseeable future. So I say all this and am in awe at how nicotine can grab you quickly and entrap you into it's sick world and distort everything. When I used to try to imagine myself quitting and immediately cringe it would be because I'd imagine having to go through something awful without it. Again, I will not lie, there were times I just wanted to say eff this give me a damn cigarette.... but I have realized, rather quickly, this month that nicotine and cigarettes do not help with any of these situations. It was all an illusion before. A mind trick being played on me/us. I just had to tell myself that even if I have a cigarette I'm still going to be upset...my car will still be wrecked...I still wont have that promotion...that idiot would have still lied to me for months...and I still would have overdrawn my account significantly. I can't believe tomorrow is 4 weeks and I am so thankful I stopped smoking when I did because I sure know I couldnt afford it right now if I didnt but Id still be forcing myself to find someway to get those nasty things. I wish I would have realized this a long time ago...that bad things happening still suck with or without cigarettes...and actually suck more with them around. of course, I cannot say i wont be extremely happy to see November end. Terrible month. Happy Thanksgiving!

leahcaR

leahcaR

 

11/26/2013

Nov-26-2013   I never believed anyone that after you quit you have dreams about smoking. However, last night I had the strangest dreams. there were two murders I was witness too and the last one was right before I woke up and was extremely brutal what was happening. Normally this stuff will wake me up, so weird. but in the middle of the two I had a dream I was at work, I believe, and i was trying to get someone to give me a cigarette...someone I didnt know, because I was quit in my dream and I didn't want my friends to find out so I didnt want to ask for their cigarettes. Finally I get one and I am smoking it and I see people I know and I am smoking while trying to hide behind someone. such a weird feeling waking up after that.   I dont know if its because I had a bad weekend followed by hearing something about someone that really pi$$es me off yesterday and smoking was on my mind...or if it was just some weird random dream.

leahcaR

leahcaR

 

11/24/2013

Nov-24-2013     So I feel good. I made it into week three and it's been easier than I imagined, as I have said. I still am waiting for my car so I can't drive to my trail I have to run the loop around my complex, but for some reason my ankles prefer my trail to the concrete sidewalk I suppose. Either way I got a little run in. I hate winter and really need to invest in some winter running clothing.   Today I found myself bored. Not really wanting a cigarette but thinking how it would help with the boredom. Dumb, I know. And I've gotten tired of chewing on gum after gum after gum. I have moved to wint-o-greens mints. I always loved those. And I refuse to let myself use candy like twizzlers and candy bars as an oral fixation supplement or whatever.   Anyway. This helped me with my boredom for a few minutes just typing this. Time for bed. Goodnight lovely people.

leahcaR

leahcaR

 

11/23/2013

Nov-23-2013   Yay 21 days. The amount of days one of my good friends said I could not make it and would fail. I just love shoving that in their know-it-all-face. Feels so good. The funny thing is I was off today so didn't really get to rub it in but yesterday when i worked half a day I did mention that tomorrow (today) was 21 days. and They said that they were proud of me and shocked that I did it. I told them it was easier than I thought it would be (which I kind of felt bad seeing as how many times theyve relapsed so quickly and this is my first try.) But I also said that I had split seconds where I thought it was all over. Like when I wrecked my car last weekend. I just didnt see the point anymore in quitting. ...they then said that they would have immediately went and got a pack of cigarettes if that happened (they are currently quit for a month now after a two day relapse after a month quit) and that it would have been enough to justify a cigarette to them. But I pointed out that I thought that at first too, but then realized that it wasnt changing the fact that my car was broken and needed to be fixed...the fact that I was mad at myself for doing it....so either way I'm going to be mad but if I gave in and bought the cigarettes Id be mad at myself for yet one more very important thing to me. And that just wasnt worth it to me. Then, as usual, he says "wow, well, yeah, I see your point...that makes sense"   I didn't do this because of him I was quitting for myself, obviously. But he challenged me by saying I couldn't make it to 21 days and challenges I do not lose. even if I would have had to chain myself to a chair for three weeks...I win. I am the one who proves people wrong, not the other way around.   I'm very proud of myself since in the beginning I knew that if something happened BIG I would be scared about how I would deal with that as I wouldn't know until it happened. But really I've only realized that it would not help anything I could ever have to go through whether its the wrecked car, the random HR meeting, or the botched promotion that all happened this month that were pretty big deals to me. I realized that I am going to be angry and sad during those times for quite a while...even weeks...but that I would still be just as angry if I was smoking so, really, they wouldn't do anything for me in any situation. I've just learned a lot about myself and we never know how strong we are until we push our limits and leave our comfort zone.

leahcaR

leahcaR

 

11/17/2013

Nov-17-2013   Being stuck in not having the option to leave and go somewhere makes me feel so confined. Maybe I want to go to the store....maybe I want to go see a friend...maybe I want to go visit a family member. But I am stuck here because I wrecked my car and this is my only option. sitting here...finding things to do here....which is probably what I would have done anyway but knowing that I cant makes me want to go out and do anything and everything and it tortures me more knowing that I cannot do it and now I want to. If that makes sense. I am torturing myself because I want things I technically didn't want to do anyway, but now do. I want to option to do whatever the hell I want to do. I've been thinking about that this morning. I've always been like this, as I'm sure many are. You tell me I cannot do something or that I am forbidden or that the tools absolutely necessary to do something are gone then Im going to get frustrated in a split second. You may say to me "You cannot have an ice-cream cone...at all...anyone else can but you!" ....excuse you?! I'm getting a damn a ice cream cone even if I have to go completely out of my way to find one or get one and then Im going to eat it in front of you. ...And I cant even eat ice cream as I am lactose intolerant to the max. But I'd deal with it if someone tried to tell me I wasn't allowed to have one...because I do what I want. Same thing if someone ever tells me I am unable to do a task...as in they don't think I have the skills to do a certain something or complete something or meet some kind of deadline. That immediately gives me all the motivation I need. I probably didn't want to do it to begin with...I probably would have rather been lazy and done less of it than I was capable....but if you tell me you know I cannot do it or do it in a certain amount of time...guess what, I'm going to do it. There isn't any doubt about it. That's how at work I do twice the amount of works anyone does in a 10 hour day... in my 8 hours. and now consistently do it. You can say a lot of things to me. Things that wont bother me. You can call me names. You can throw things at me.... but you cannot tell me I cant have something or I'm not capable of doing something that I know I can. I take those as challenges....and I take those seriously. Which brought me to thinking of this. I remember when I started running again in August (I used to run several miles a day years ago while still being a smoker but not as heavy of one as I became) people were like "man I hate running" "good for you" ....then I was still doing it in September.... getting better. People were starting to get inspired to wanting to start too. Now, I was always outside smoking with my smoker friends. The biggest response I got from anyone... smokers or non smokers were that they couldn't believe I was doing it and still smoking in my day to day life. I assured them I was jogging but it's not like I was race material...it was only to relieve my stress and it brought me some kind of sick happiness to feel like my muscles and everything in me were going to die and then it being all over with that smile on my face. I remember one person outside smoking with me said something along the lines of "wow...I'm just astonished you can even jog in a mediocre fashion since you're a smoker. You've been talking so much about how awesome running makes you feel it made me try it out a few times and I couldn't even make it a half mile. ...do you think you could become an amazing runner if you stopped smoking?" ...at this point I had built myself up to about 2.5 miles a day sometimes more and they were shocked they couldn't do a half mile. I told them I had no plans to stop smoking.....that I enjoyed it and that I enjoyed running. I would give neither up. Smoking has been in my life too long. I told them. They are my friend and are there when no one else is. I wouldn't know what to do without them, plus I'm not running to amazing at it...I'm only doing it for one reason...because it relieves my work/life stress so much since I started, so there is no reason to become amazing at any of that. That was the extent of that and that just made the wheels in my mind turn for quite a few days. I'm very competitive...with anyone or even with myself. It's almost a disorder. I started paying closer attention to my times and distances and breathing. Dammit, I thought, I really could get better at this since I get better every day anyway and was suddenly at a standstill for a couple weeks. Should I give up my cigarettes? maybe... wait... no ....that's dumb Rachael you aren't going to do that. Quit talking crazy to yourself. (which was obviously my addiction talking to me...I've never had a thought of possibly quitting until that moment) Then just a few days later I was talking to someone a few days later who was telling me someone told them they couldn't do something. And as I've just told you, Rachael is not a fan of that. I asked if they proved them wrong and shoved it in their face? And they told me no they didn't want to look stupid if they failed at it and that it just didn't feel worth it to them. I'll start the next of this off with saying I am a very outspoken person. I do not really have a filter. I usually say whatever I think of. Some people don't like this but I don't worry about all that. Anyway, I laughed a little when they said that and stared at them in shock. I told them how rude it was of that person and that you cant let people treat you like that. They don't know what you can do and it would have been better to try and fail than not to try to show them that you can in fact do something. I was kind of scolding them telling them it was ridiculous to get treated like that when you are an adult and you can do whatever you want and that person doesn't own you or get to make your decisions on what you do or don't do....or on what you can and can't do and that they needed to quit letting people treat them like complete garbage. Then they decided to hit me with a reality check, which never happens. They said I was being a hypocrite. Which immediately pissed me off and got me on defensive mode. I told them how offensive that was. I never let anyone walk on me...I'll walk on someone else before anyone treats me like that or tells me what I have to do. The notion was ridiculous that they would say this to me. But then they pointed at the cigarette I was smoking and said that I can't stop smoking...not only if someone told me I couldn't but even if I wanted to stop smoking. basically I then told them that's the dumbest thing I've ever heard. I can stop whatever I want to stop doing just like I can do what I want to do. I'm 27...I do and don't do what I want to do. And I want to smoke. Then it was getting more heated and they spewed out a huge spiel at me that I cant remember word for word.... but went something like this. They explained that maybe I thought I wanted to and that I thought I loved it as much as I wanted but that I didn't really like it and that deep down I hated it whether I said it or not. That I have been a slave of R. J. Reynolds for 10 years or more and that it was a fact. That I did what he wanted me to do and I had no choice in the matter. That I was in so deep with this dude that I didn't even realize I was his slave and that he had mind fu**** me since the very beginning slowly...brainwashing me to think that I wanted to go into that gas station almost every day and buy those two packs of cigarettes (not because I smoked completely 2 packs a day but because the thought of being without or running out when I couldn't get to more was nightmarish.) They said R. J. Reynolds is telling you and has been telling you for years that you have to go get those you need those to live your day to day life and that without them you wont survive. You have no control over this. You can't quit. You are an addict. You don't love it. You loathe it. You hate standing outside in the winter three times a day at work. You can't stand smoking. But you are the deepest kind of slave and you have been told you can't leave this cigarette prison, ever, and so you tell people you don't want to.....but I know, and people know, that all you want is to be let out of it. So don't tell me what I should have done to that person or that I let anyone walk all over me. You're in a dungeon....and they won't let you out and there is nothing you can do about it. ......And then they stormed off.... That was a lot to take in. No one had said anything like that to me before. I felt violated by this person...but at the same time there was so much processing going on in my brain. What were they talking about? oh well...I'd deal with it later. Then on the way home from work I went into the gas station and bought cigarettes. walking out I realized this person was completely right. wtf has been happening to me all these years? I just wanted to smoke an occasional one while drinking in my teens with my friends. I never wanted any part of what this was now...of what this has been for years. I never signed up for this. All these thoughts flooded in at once. I've been broke many times but to me they were like food...I don't care I had to have them. Shamefully I realized to myself I hadn't looked at the price of a pack of cigarettes...in....years. Because it didn't really matter...I'd be getting them anyway. I went back in and looked at what it cost for 1 pack and walked back out all while being hit with a realization that I was in a prison and that I didn't know how to get out of it. What was this feeling? I had never felt this before. I wanted no part of someone or something telling me what I had to do or that I could live my life not doing this. When did this happen to me? I searched my mind for the exact moment that these things threw me into a dark pit and shackled my legs. I couldn't find that moment in my head. All the years blurred together. I got home went on my run. got a really good time on 3.1 miles (given that I was a smoker.) then my competitiveness kicked in and I realized I liked this not just for stress relief but that the one person was right...I wanted to be better...I could be much better. then I drove home. I lit a cigarette (to "reward" myself with my new best time). and then I sat there and realized I did not love this. That person was right. I did not enjoy doing this. I felt I had to do this. My brain thought i had to buy those and smoke those and do these things and at some point in my life someone or something did start telling me what I had to do.... that I had to smoke cigarettes. That I had to buy them, no matter the cost. That I could not be without them. Well, dammit, I got pissed. Id went and let myself get tricked at some point and let this person/thing into my brain and now I was doing whatever it said and not doing what it said also. what an eventful day.... between being in the car after that run realizing I wanted to be the best I could be at it and sitting on my couch "rewarding" myself with a cigarette I realized this was going to be over for me very soon. No one tells me what to do or what I have to do. Now, I am not stupid, I did not feel I could suddenly quit at that very moment in time. I gave myself a little over three weeks to prepare my brain to say goodbye to this awful person/thing controlling my actions. I knew I probably wouldn't make it if I quit right then. I had years I had reinforced into my head how much this was my only true friend, always there. Stockholm Syndrome is it? And I had to let it sink in...so November first seemed like the perfect time to make my escape. And I did. And I think that's why I've gotten through this without caving so far at this point or feeling intense need for it. I am mad that it was controlling me and I was not controlling it. Nothing controls me..I always say that but for years something was controlling me. Sure it felt sad to give it up and there are things I do now that feel awkward without having them but each time I feel that awkwardness going away bit by bit. I want to get myself back. I will not allow something to control me and now I am finding myself at the point of trying to forgive myself for letting something like that get to that point. The point where I didn't even realize what I was doing...just going through motions that were ingrained in me for so long. I thank that person for saying those things that at the time ticked me off. I needed to hear it. Someone who wasn't afraid of telling the "mean girl" what was up and that she was trapped. Because after that all I could feel was confinement like I do without a car. I felt cornered by cigarettes and felt all the walls closing in upon me. Anyway, the thought of being cooped up in my house with no car to drive across town in made me think of that cigarette prison I was in but didn't realize it. I was in a confined dungeon for years being told that I couldn't leave...that I didn't want to leave...that I had to go drop all that money on something...that I had no other option...and that if I left it my life would be filled with emptiness. That I would live in a nightmarish world filled with darkness if I left. Even just at this point i see what lies those are. Completely disgusting lies to allow yourself to believe. To stay in that small space and be imprisoned. just in the past 16 or whatever days I am filled with more happiness than I was before and there is no darkness out here...nothing nightmarish. Shameful. Sorry for the long post.... you get cooped up in a place for two days and your mind might start going wacko on you... and then starts to relate being carless in a confined apartment to smoking cigarettes for years. So if none of that made sense.... lo siento... but at least it killed a bunch of time for me that I would have been bored out of my mind.

leahcaR

leahcaR

 

11/16/2013

Nov-16-2013   Today, an extreme stressor happened. It was completely my fault. I was turning left and got a text and looked down at the screen to see what it said. Which is obviously a big no-no. as I started turning is when I was looking at it and I made way too wide of a turn and ran up the small curb and knocked out a fire hydrant. completely jacked up the the front right of my vehicle...popped my tire messed up the wheel. And, for the first time had an air bag deployed in my face. which bruised my arm and I now have knot to show this. So I am carless until it gets fixed and it sucks. The whole thing just completely sucked. A friend stopped what they were doing to come sit with me while I figured out what to do and waited for a tow truck. I was so pissed off at myself and the whole situation. I still am. I didnt really want one but I told him as he was sitting there while I was crying that I should just say screw all this and have a cigarette since there was a gas station right there. He isn't a smoker and never was. But he knew what to say. He told me that it wouldn't fix anything and that I would be so much more mad at myself than just because of the car...because Id be angry at myself for throwing away all this time I already put into not smoking. (which I already knew and was shocked he understood that that is what would have happened instead of saying oh well you can quit again tomorrow) ....then I realized I had my last piece of gum already and I just started crying more and he whips out some altoids and hands them over and I just chew one after the other. Sounds gross but it was really helpful. My little hero I am now calling him. I am still in distress over this situation and not having a car until insurance gets it together and figures it out and fixes it and wont probably be for a week or two for everything I am assuming. But he definitely saved me earlier...I dont think I would have had a cigarette as I wasnt about to go anywhere looking like I did crying like that but he was supportive and comforting...it was like I had all of you with me in this person. Lesson learned (which I already knew but ignored) put the phone away while driving.....it is stupid not to.

leahcaR

leahcaR

 

11/14/2013

Nov-14-2013     Tomorrow is two weeks not smoking and then one week until my skeptical friend (who was unsupportive on the beginning) owes me lunch. Just lunch from the restaurant in work but still it's a victory over the know-it-all so I'll take it.   I never would have imagined id ever make it this far let alone want to quit. I am also shocked at how it wasn't like pulling teeth which is how I imagined. I thought it would be excruciating to ever not smoke and completely impossible. So I always convinced myself I liked it and would do it forever, which is what I always told everyone. I don't know what flipped my switch completely. I wanted to run better because I really enjoyed it. But I was also getting tired of the feeling of constantly having to clear my throat especially at work where it is quiet. It was like there was always something back there and it was happening more and more. Either way I decided I didn't want to do it anymore and gave myself the month of October to say bye bye. I didn't know what was going to happen or if I would immediately make a fool of myself. All I expected was constantly wanting one and awful feelings of dread.   Maybe I don't know what the difference between a craving for a cigarette compares to just having a split second thought about them because something triggers the thought of them in my mind. But I can't think of one time so far I actually wanted one. Just split second reminders of times I'd normally have one. And I'm grateful for that. I know I've posted about some hard days. But they were just difficult days I was trying to find a way to deal withy normal stresses none of those times I wanted one or was I giving myself the option. I didn't expect to get this far as easy as it has seemed. Not that far compared to others. But further than I used to have the courage to even contemplate about going.

leahcaR

leahcaR

 

11/13/2013

Nov-13-2013     theres a gas station right up my road, so obviously that is where I would always get my cigarettes from. Ive lived at this place for three years almost so they know me pretty well...plus I have worked right by there for about 5 years. Usually when I walk in I go grab a water and a granola bar and by the time I'm at the counter they are already ringing up two packs of the cigarettes I used to smoke. I havent gone in there as much as I normally did, since I used to go almost every day, but Ive gone in there a few times and a couple of the times someone started ringing them up or reaching for them and I've to go "No thanks", then they ask if I've quit and I say yes. Then another one of them who always asked if I needed them before ringing them up finally ask if I quit smoking since I haven't bought any in a while. They've kind of become my little cheerleaders now, asking how it's going and such. :)

leahcaR

leahcaR

 

11/08/2013

Nov-8-2013   Seven days. I know to so many on here it doesnt seem like much. To me it seems crazy. It use to seem unimaginable. I've noticed some things. I always thought if I ever tried to quit that the entire time I was going to be wanting one...thinking about one....obsessing. I thought that would be every second of every day. It sounded like misery. When I quit on November 1st I coincidentally had gotten sick and so it made it easier because eh cigarettes arent that good when you have a cold. that lasted the weekend then I had work. I found that I didnt really think about it like I thought I would. I was never tempted these seven days to go buy a pack. I had a day or two where stressful things happened and it was hard, so hard, to find something to else to do and I ended up just having to be pissed and letting it fade away just like it would have anyway even if I had had a cigarette. That was hard. Mostly, though, I found myself feeling like I was in another person's body/life. Emotional mess is an understatement at times. not because I wanted one...just because there is so much emotion. Also, as many will agree, smoking is a social thing. I made so many friends over the years that way. Work....almost everyone who smokes talks to everyone else that smokes...thats how you make your friends your first days...or meet people you would never have noticed had a chance to speak to before. It's almost like you share something special with each other and have some kind of bond that makes you auto-friends. Now that I am at my first weekend of not being sick and not smoking I dont know what to do with myself. I'm drinking hot tea and chewing gum. Oh boy. I think I understand something a little bit that I didn't before. When people get out of prison after being in it for a decade or more and they just don't know what to do, they aren't themselves....they have no idea how to function and feel more comfortable in that confined prison that is so familiar to them that they find themselves just wanting to go back to it. This may be the dumbest thing anyone's said/related smoking to.... but I really feel I was in a different life...I was in a prison. A prison with a routine and a certain thing to do in any given circumstance that came up. Then I walked out of the prison. Just like with a real prisoner set free, I know just what I would have to do to land myself back in that world, that place, that would make me feel comfortable and at home. I know it lies just right up the street and costs about 5 bucks....It's right there.... just like that crime someone has to commit to wind up back in that confined comfortable place for them is right in front of them constantly, all day every day. I know nicotine is a prison. Its a dark place....but it's a place I know so well. And now I am having to get to know a new place. Understand everything in a different way. React to everything in a new way. Look at everything a new way. And it can be so confusing and so overwhelming all at once. As much as it has seemed easier than I thought it would be and built it up to be it is also hard....especially mentally. Especially when that little addict in my head tries to talk to me and I have to attempt to shut him the hell up....and it's so hard to shut him up when you are alone and not around people. week one down though. Here's to hoping to stay out of that prison.

leahcaR

leahcaR

 

11/06/2013 2

Nov-6-2013     I grew up in a house where no one smoked. I was never around it. Then I got to high school, got a job and I remember a great friend that was a few years older than I was a pack a day smoker. I thought she was pretty cool and we always had so much fun. She never asked me to smoke, I wasn't even of legal age at the time. I didn't want to...I just remember in the back of my mind thinking it made her look cool the way she told funny stories while puffing on a cigarette. Then one day a friend of my same age and I were messing around and going to go to a billiards place to just sit around and hang out and we thought it would be funny/cool to go get those really long skinny cigarettes super glamorous people in commercials/ads used to use. It felt like just a joke and I had a great time. When it was time to leave I noticed my pack was practically gone. Oh well, right? they are basically like puffing on air.   I went on about my business and then one day a bunch of my friends and I were drinking and some had cigarettes. I thought what the hey, I'll have a couple. That happened several times. just did it at parties, and not much at all. My parents didn't know I smoked for years. I was great at hiding it even for the couple years or so I smoked while living with them.   Anyway, it got to the point where it wasn't just at parties. Id be at work and get upset or annoyed and then go to my car and just have one. Or Id be at home and Id get upset and call one of my best friends and say hey let me come get you and we will smoke since obviously we didnt want to do it where we lived. We would park in a parking lot and smoke a couple cigarettes and gossip or vent, then we would go back to our houses. A pack of cigarettes would literally last me almost a month. They'd get stale and I'd have to throw them away after a couple weeks or so. I refused to call myself a smoker. for at least two to three years. I simply was not one in my mind. Smoking was disgusting and that just was not me.   Then I got a job at a call center. Talk about stressed out. Talk about being around 90% smokers. I would smoke with them on all of my breaks, on my way to and from work. I became, almost overnight, a pack a day smoker. I remember the day I had to admit to myself I was a smoker. I was in a doctors office for some reason or other and like always they ask if you are a smoker and I just stared at her for what felt like minutes and finally said "yes" in a childlike ashamed voice. And then it just hit me.... I was a smoker. for years I smoked about a pack a day. And not that light stuff people seem to smoke. My poison was Camel Menthol Wides...and not Camel Menthol Wide Lights.... the full blown dark green package.   People would pressure me all the time to stop. Ask me when I plan on stopping. That I need to quit. "Aren't you worried about your health, Rachael?" ..."What about your future?" ...."Smoking makes everything you own stink" ..."You are too pretty to smoke". I loathed hearing all of these things. It was none of their business and not their place to tell me what I should do. and besides, I enjoyed it. And I would tell them that. I liked it and I would never quit. I couldn't even imagine my life without a pack of cigarettes on hand and hopefully a backup one just in case. Anytime I tried to envision any kind of a future that didn't include my cigarettes it would make me feel very uneasy and unhappy. I never planned on becoming a smoker.....but once I was I never planned on not being one.   Then on August 1st I started jogging again. I did it in junior high, high school, and for a couple years after high school. It was always a huge stress relief for me, and unlike most everyone else I enjoy it. I started jogging again because I was having anxiety attacks and I was told by my doctor to find something that I enjoyed that relieved stress for me. And all that came to mind was jogging. so I did that for a good two months and felt great. It really relieved a lot of my stress and anxiety. Still, though, I was able to do it and still be a smoker...so I had no intention of quitting. Then one day in the beginning of October I realized just how much I was getting into this jogging thing again. It no longer was only about relieving stress I was starting to feel pride any time I went further or improved my pace. I was getting a high from it. I was becoming obsessed. I was becoming proud. Then it hit me one day after a run, I have to quit smoking to be better...to be the best I can be at this because I love it. It wasn't a slow realization or a slow acceptance. I just suddenly knew I had to stop and that I had no other choice because I loved running more than I loved those cigarettes.   Smoking has been a huge part of my life and as stupid and weird as it may sound I always saw it as a friend. Like a really best friend. The kind that no matter in the world happens or what awful thing you may have done would always be there...not judging. Just there to comfort and "listen". Thats how I viewed it and thats why I would always tell everyone I would never give it up. So I gave myself the rest of the month of October to tell that "good friend" my good byes.   Everyone has been behind me 100% except the one person who has been trying to get me to quit smoking for almost a year. I made a post about them the other day when I was bawling, googling, desperate, and stumbled upon this site. They have quit multiple times. All on Chantix. They would last a few weeks then ask me for a cigarette. Go another few weeks...ask me for a cigarette. Sometimes they'd even go over a month without relapsing. I told them in the beginning of October I was going to quit and he was excited. I told him I was quitting cold turkey (the only way I would ever have wanted to quit if I ever came to that point) and he was so against it. During the month of october he would tell me how I wasn't going to make it and that I was setting myself up for failure. That I needed Chantix. it was funny during October while I was still smoking and we joked about it. He made a bet I couldn't even go 21 days without relapsing...but that if I did he'd buy my lunch at work. He's the only one who still believes that Im setting myself up for failure by telling my family/friends on Facebook that I never see and sharing this journey with them. He is a really really really good friend of mine and it makes me sad that he isn't behind me 100% on this like everyone else is.   I know I can do this, because when I say I am going to do something...I do it. No matter what. No matter what I have to do. Finding this place was such a godsend. Most of my friends are either smokers or non smokers...so none of them truly know how I feel and what is happening to me. He was the only one who could and he's not the most supportive, so finding a community of supportive people who are going or have gone through the same things is going to help me so much, I already know it.

leahcaR

leahcaR

 

11/06/2013

Nov-6-2013     Feeling a panic attack coming. I have been fine. I haven't wanted a cigarette. I just heard some news (long story) about a reason I didn't get a promotion only to find out that same reason didn't apply to someone else for something different. which they pride themselves on saying they treat everyone the same. Beside the point. I am on the verge of an anxiety attack. I am in a place where it would be amazingly simple to ask any of my tens of friends for a cigarette. two people have already offered. I fell like I am panicking. I want to scream. But most of all I am wondering where my "friend" of so many years (which I know is no real friend) that has been around when such awful frustrating things happen is. All I can think about is that "friend" I gave up days ago. Which would fix nothing. But nonetheless was always right there when something bad happens. this is the first time since the 1st I have been on the verge of complete breakdown. And I have to be here for 4 more hours. I know there will be many more episodes like this. I am just beside myself.

leahcaR

leahcaR

 

11/04/2013

Nov-4-2013     I decided to quit cold turkey on November first. I decided it back in the beginning of October to give myself time to say my goodbyes to cigarettes. I have a friend who has quit several times via chantix usually and relapses. This is my first attempt and I just want to do it cold turkey. First 24 hours were great 2nd 24 hours great/not bad. Then last night my friend got weird on me when I just said I was nervous about going to work and not smoking on my breaks and he then lays into me to not post n fb about my quitting (which has all been positive stuff and only 24 hours in between bc I have family members all over the place interested in this) he gets rude and after I told him I'm only posting to share with my friends and family he told me to either quit being a d**k or start smoking. I wasn't being one. Then today he talks to one of our mutual mostly mine, friends and says she's making excuses for my by defending me and saying I probably post about it for support and there is nothing wrong with it. Anyway after work we are talking and trying to work it out and I am just bawling. Uncontrollably. I don't know if it is because this friend or if it's the nicotine withdrawal hitting me all the sudden. Or both. It was 72 hours about 7 hours ago. I know I can do this I really thought I knew I could. I don't want to prove him right. And really I don't want a cigarette. I quit because a couple months ago I started running again and love it and know ll be better without the cigarettes. I haven't wanted a cigarette this whole time. But I am finally able to not cry as I write this. I just feel very sad. Is this nicotine withdrawal or am I being a baby about this friend I thought was going to be supportive   My emotions are all over the place today, but I had kept it all together so well since Friday. I don't think it's the fact that they are saying those things, I think it is because this is a friend who has tried to get me to quit for nearly a year (as he bounced back and forth quitting for a month and smoking again) and he was so happy when I finally decided to quit I really thought I could rely on him for support. My feelings just got hurt and I feel like an adolescent as I normally am not this emotional over someone being critical about something I am doing or how I am doing it. I feel like I am some hardcore illegal drug user who quit with no help.

leahcaR

leahcaR

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QuitTrain®, a quit smoking support community, was created by former smokers who have a deep desire to help people quit smoking and to help keep those quits intact.  This place should be a safe haven to escape the daily grind and focus on protecting our quits.  We don't believe that there is a "one size fits all" approach when it comes to quitting smoking.  Each of us has our own unique set of circumstances which contributes to how we go about quitting and more importantly, how we keep our quits.

 

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