The internal war wages on. All the way home from work yesterday, I kept thinking it's been almost two weeks, and perhaps I've earned myself a cigarette as a reward. Just one. I was completely convinced that having successfully quit smoking for 5 years and now that I'm successfully doing it again - well, it should be a no-brainer for me. I've got this, and I totally deserve it. Thought about how great that cigarette was going to be all the way home... how I was just going to have one of my husband's cigarettes and then carry on with the quit as I've been doing. Certainly he'd give me one - he loves me.
About half an hour after I got home, my husband showed up and found me on the back patio. After about two minutes of small talk, I asked him to give me one of his cigarettes. He told me no, and there was no way that HE was going to be THAT person that takes me back down to zero days. Then, he said he was going back in the house, and if I wanted to come in and steal one from him, that would be up to me, but he wasn't going to just give it to me. And he left me there, and there I sat questioning everything about this quit.
I stood up several times considering walking in and taking that cigarette. I logged in to QT and went to the SOS board, thinking that there was seriously nothing anybody could possibly say to me that was going to make me NOT have my reward. I thought about how much I wanted to be a non-smoker. I thought about how much I wanted that cigarette. I thought about how hard it would be on me if I had to go through Hell Week again. I thought about how I'm mentally strong enough to have just one. I was so completely torn - I felt like a complete lunatic. Either I wanted the damn thing or I didn't. But, I could not make up my mind.
So, I thought, you know, let's just post an SOS and see what's what. But, when I started reading about how to post an SOS, I found myself reading another member's SOS posting. That person was having all of the same conflicting thoughts that I was. And, I read some of the responses by other members. There was so much kindness, so much truth. Strangers going out of their way to help prevent another stranger from lighting up. Just for right now. And then I started crying. I wasn't sad, or angry, or anything like that. As I look back on that dark hour of mine, I believe the feeling was frustration. Frustration from having to deny myself what I "want" everyday. It's terribly draining to be so firm with yourself.
The crying seemed to help. It relieved some of the pressure and some of the tension - enough for me to really listen to what these other members were telling the SOS poster. I don't have my head on right yet. I still think of it as denying myself a cigarette, when I should be thinking that I'm denying the addiction. I'm not losing anything. But, as much as I try to tell myself that, and as much as I want to believe it, I can't quite get my head wrapped around it. So, I went out to read up on addiction some more / again and reaffirmed my NOPE commitment, and watched some QT videos about smoking (again) and then...
@Sslip must have noticed that I was "liking" posts on the SOS thread and then must have noticed that I was re-NOPEing, and took the time to check on me. Just to make sure I was OK. It took me almost half an hour to reply, because the gesture of reaching out to me during my struggle got me crying all over again. I realized that I was sitting there feeling sorry for myself. Feeling sorry that I couldn't have a cigarette. Ridiculous as that sounds, it's how I was feeling. And the fact that I was being ridiculous made me FEEL ridiculous. Eventually I responded that I was "struggling a little bit" (understatement of the century), took a few deep breaths, and thanked my husband for not letting me have one. (He admitted that the look in my eye was clear - I was going to smoke.)
If it weren't for the old posts here and Sslip's thoughtfulness, I'd be back to Day 1 again today. Or Day 0 - who knows if I'd've actually only had the one. I owe today's continued quit to all of you. Thank you, thank you, thank you.
If you're reading this, please pay it forward by posting your own threads. Posts, blogs, anything. It may not happen today or next month, but eventually, someone will read it at just the right moment.