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Wednesday, July 23, 2008

A Mothers View On Autism And Michael Savage

Michael Savage claims on his show that autism is “a fraud, a racket.” Listen to how this hits home and outrages a mother of an autistic child.

read more | digg story

Saturday, May 24, 2008

A Year Without Cigarettes

May 21st marked a full year without cigarettes.

How am I doing? I didn't think about it until May 23rd.

The freedom from smoking has changed my life. I could sit here and tell you about being able to hustle up stairs, or that my clothes don't stink or how good food tastes, but in reality the biggest thing about being smoke-free, aside from physical health, is purely psychological - I am free from an addiction. My life no longe revolves around smoking. That speaks louder than anything else.

I plum forgot about my one-year anniversary because I simply don't think about smoking much anymore. Occasionally the topic will cross my mind, usually when talking to another smoker who also wants to quit. I tell them what they've heard is true - you have to want to quit. You have to want it more than anything else. Most people who smoke like smoking, even if they really can't see why anymore. The satisfaction factor for their cravings has earned the title of "something I like to do".

I no longer think about when my next break is, or if I can sneak out between breaks to catch a smoke. I don't have to remember to suck one down before a movie, or a dinner out. No more standing in bad weather, or cracking the car window. Its not that the cessation of these activities is a big deal in and of themselves, its that I don't even think about doing them. It's natural to not do them.

A few days ago, I walked out of a diner where a couple of men were standing outside, and one remarked that he was going to ask me for a light but I didn't look like someone who smoked. Wow!, I thought in my head. Something else I hadn't considered - people who smoke generally look like people who smoke. That comment made my whole day - I was telling friends "hey, I don't look like I smoke" (of course, there's always the wise cracker who says "yeah, but you're still ugly").

So, unless I have a relapse - and I don't see it happening - you likely wont hear from me again. Since I don't smoke, and I don't think about smoking, I've simply run out of things I can say about it. And that's great - not having a thing to say about smoking, because it's so not part of who I am and what I do.

I am an ex-smoker. I hope all of you reach your one-year anniversary and become true ex-smokers, too.

Monday, March 24, 2008

how is everyone doing so far?

I hope everyone hasn't given up on stopping smoking? Kelly did you set a stop date to just say I have had enough of this being a slave to cigarettes and be strong and over come the urge to light up? I guess it is somewhat harder to stop when someone you live with still smokes, you might feel like you are being deprived of something you enjoy doing, I really did enjoy smoking and for the longest time I really didn't want to stop in fact I told people that when they asked me why I didn't stop. I always wondered what people did with their hands all the time since they didn't smoke. Well now that I don't smoke I don't miss not holding a cigarette all the time, in fact it is actually more handy not to have to find somewhere to lay a cigarette while I am trying to do something.

I think today is the last day this month to follow the almanac but there are 3 days next month I think and I believe that the 3rd is one of them I could be wrong on that, and I know some folks think that is a lot of witch craft or star gazing but there are gazillions of old timers and some not so old timers that swear by it, and I will admit, I think there is something to it too and not only the smoking thing.

Gigi50 I guess you are still not smoking? I also noticed some withdrawals or what ever they are called but everyone I talk to in the medical field tells me that will all get better in a while. I hope so because some of it is annoying, do you notice getting up in the middle of the night almost every night, I do, from 12:00 to 2:00 every night and it is hard to get enough sleep like that and I even get night sweats some times, I guess it could be menopause..lol but really I am not sure what causes it.

Anyway, I wanted to check in with the folks on here and see how you all are doing. Good luck. Be safe.


Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Just Checking In

Hello. I don't have too much to say about smoking or quitting right at the moment. I did want to say that after I stopped the Chantix and the Avelox, I started feeling better almost right away. It is nice being back to my normal self.

I have been busy with work and with my sons. Just normal life going on. I am really starting to get spring fever. I know I need to quit while it is still cold because I enjoy smoking more when it is nice and warm out.

Thank you Robert Drysdale for your great posts! Welcome to our little group. I hope you will continue to provide us with your good information.

I am working on setting a quit date. Gee, that sure makes it sound like a big deal, huh? There really is no great project involved with setting the date, I just have to pick one and do it. I have not checked the almanac for good dates to quit in March, I think I will do that now. I hope I did not already miss them.

Congratulations to everyone out there that has already quit smoking. That includes everyone that writes here and also all of our commenters that have quit. I am really learning a lot from all of you and your experiences. Thank you for sharing.

Side Effects Think about it

I've been catching up. Think about side effects like this.

When you smoke there aren't any perceivable side effects (that the smoker sees) BACK OFF all you reformed smokers - I'm going somewhere here.

The minute we stop we begin to look for what? Side Effects blaming the pills, patch, whatever crutch we've chosen to help us get there.

Perhaps the side effects are just from quitting?

Being BITCHY, SNAPPY, GRUMPY, GASSY, CRAPPY, SLEEPLESS, HUNGRY (god I sound like the 7 dwarfs all rolled into one) I probably snuffed Snow White but just don't remember doing it.

Sleepless = not sleeping, insomnia, tired, cannot get enough of the infomercial world until the early early edition of the news shows up around what 3:00 am

Gassy = OMG you would think I'd eaten enough pinto beans to be my own blazing saddles!

Crappy = crappy taste in my mouth YUCK

Hungry = I could eat the kitchen counter some days, silestone isn't good for one's digestive system

Bitchy/Snappy/Grumpy = well those are all self defining now aren't they?

Positives (that I've noticed)

My skin looks 100% better
I don't have to have waxing done as often
Food tastes better
Those wrinkles around my mouth are diminishing
My voice is different clearer, less raspy (I don't sound like that woman on Beetlejuice anymore)
Cardio isn't a dirty word anymore
My sense of smell seems better
No Sinus infections
Yellowish tint to my fingernails is gone

Enough Ranting for Now

Staying on the Wagon without firing a shot!

Well I'm back. It's been a month officially and 2 months unofficially. I still haven't smoked but boy have I wanted to more than once. Friday nights when our friends all get together to throw darts, talk, hang out whatever oh yea and drink.......Now that smell just makes me sick to my stomach. I hate the way I smell when we get up the next morning.

I've quit taking Chantix. Took it off and on for over a year, never wanted to kill anyone or myself, all the side effects etc. It worked for me what can I say, or maybe it really didn't and I was just ready to quit - I'll never really know. But it helped me get there. I honestly think I finally decided not to let it beat me any longer. Us Taureans can be really stubborn you know! Bottom line whatever makes you quit makes you quit.

I've been faithfully working out (6 times a week) haven't lost a stinking pound or one Percentage of body fat, still on the blood pressure medicine, etc. I did have a pity party last Tuesday because NOTHING had happened to me since I quit except for I'd been sicker than a dog after quitting and I'd quit.

Here's the Positives - I can go a good solid 30 minutes on the elliptical without hacking up a lung, I can do 20 military style push ups, I can handle up to 40 lbs when doing tricep push downs. I haven't gained one pound from stopping smoking. I can take a deep breath without coughing and it doesn't hurt. I jogged/walked my first mile in my entire life a week ago and lived to blog about it!

Bottom line all the scare tactics in the world aren't going to make anyone quit.
You'll quit more than once
You'll fall off the wagon and get back on the wagon and fall off and get back on.
You have find the thing that will enable you to quit no matter what it is and go for it.

Sunday, March 9, 2008

New Kind Of Drug Could Increase Number Who Quit Smoking

Greetings: Smokers in your
quest to quit smoking this information might be useful.

Smokers who try to quit using existing medications, such as nicotine patches or Zyban, are about twice as likely to succeed as those who don't use medication or are prescribed placebos during clinical trials.

But despite the relative effectiveness of medications currently on the market, more than 80 per cent of quitters will be smoking again within a year, according to a review in the latest IJCP, the UK-based International Journal of Clinical Practice.

A new kind of drug has now been developed that could improve long-term quit rates, according to Dr Jonathan Foulds from the Tobacco Dependence Program at the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey.

Varenicline is being evaluated by the US Food and Drug Administration under a six-month priority review which began in late 2005.

"Trials carried out so far have yielded promising results, suggesting that varenicline could be a major advance in the treatment of nicotine dependence" says Dr Foulds.

"Drugs are normally earmarked for priority review by the FDA if they are felt to address health needs that are not currently being adequately met.

"What makes varenicline different to existing medication is that it is the first treatment specifically designed to target the neurobiological mechanism of nicotine dependence."

Initial results show that the drug successfully stimulates dopamine -- sometimes called the brain's pleasure chemical -- as well as blocking nicotine receptors. This reduces nicotine withdrawal symptoms and craving and may also prevent a lapse from turning into a full relapse.

Existing quit smoking methods have limited success and studies have found that some 18 per cent of people using them will be smoke free after a year, compared with 10 per cent of people prescribed placebos.

This figure can be increased to 25 to 35 per cent when smokers receive intensive counselling and combined medications are used.

Dr Foulds summarised 141 studies covering just over 48,000 subjects who were randomly allocated different types of medication or placebos.

He found that quit rates with nicotine replacement methods and drugs such as bupropion (trade name Zyban), nortriptyline and clonidine ranged from 14.6 per cent to 24.9 per cent. Smokers who were prescribed placebos (dummy drugs) achieved success rate of between 8.6 per cent and 14.4 per cent.

But clinical trials carried out with varenicline on thousands of smokers suggest that the new drug yield may yield better success rates.

The results of human trials reported in 2005 and 2006 found that short and long-term quit rates were higher when compared with placebos or bupropion (Zyban).

Studies presented at recent scientific meetings have shown that short-term quit rates in the first 12 weeks were approximately four times higher with varenicline than placebos and that long-term abstinence rates, for the first year, were more than twice those of placebos.

"Almost 20 countries and numerous US states have already announced or implemented comprehensive indoor smoking bans and that figure is rising all the time" adds Dr Foulds.

"Here in New Jersey, for example, smoking is very expensive and we have just implemented comprehensive legislation to ban smoking indoors in virtually all pubic places.

"This is good news for smokers and non smokers alike as many smokers are keen to quit and this gives them an added incentive.

"Medicines like varenicline are very important as they will help many more people to quit smoking, including those who have failed with other methods."

Adapted from materials provided by Blackwell Publishing Ltd., via EurekAlert!

Hope you found this information useful
Robert Drysdale(Biobob)

Quitting Smoking: It's Never Too Late

Greetings Everyone

Many people spend a lifetime trying to give up smoking, but there is good news for older smokers from research carried out at the Peninsula Medical School in South West England.

A study by Dr. Iain Lang and his colleagues has revealed that the point of retirement is one of the most effective times to try to give up smoking. The study followed 1712 smokers aged 50 years and older over a six-year period, taking into account their work status (whether an individual was working or retired) and smoking status (whether a non-smoker or smoker).

The research showed that a total of 42.5 per cent of those who had recently retired had quit smoking, compared with 29.3 per cent of those in employment and 30.2 per cent for those who were already retired. The results indicate those who undergo the transition into retirement are more likely to quit smoking than those who do not.

Said Dr. Lang: "Retirement is one of the great transitions in life, which is why a greater proportion of people may find it easier to make significant changes elsewhere in their lives at this time. Retirement is a point of life at which people have a whole range of opportunities to do things they haven't previously felt able to do. We are excited at the possibility that what we have seen with smoking may also apply to other aspects of lifestyle, like eating more healthily and doing more exercise. That would be a great result not just for the health of the individual but also because it would relieve some of the pressure placed upon the NHS by an ageing population."

He added: "However, anyone who isn't planning to retire just yet shouldn't put off quitting. The sooner you quit the sooner you will experience the benefits -- when it comes to stopping smoking there's no time like the present!"

The Peninsula Medical School team also suggests that employers who are putting together retirement training for their staff should also include guidance about how to have a healthy retirement.

Dr Lang stated: "We would also like to see more employers use retirement as a catalyst for supporting the ongoing health of their retired employees. Preparing them for a healthy retirement is good HR policy -- and quitting smoking will be an important part of that."

Adapted from materials provided by Peninsula College of Medicine and Dentistry.

Hope you found this post useful in your quest to butt-out.

Best Regards
Robert Drysdale(biobob)


Greetings Non-smokers:

If you are planning to ignore the messages of national No Smoking Day on 12th March by claiming that smoking is one of the few pleasures left to you, then recent research from the Peninsula Medical School in the South West of England may make you think again.
Extensive research carried out by Dr Iain Lang at the Peninsula Medical School looked at the relationship between smoking and psychological wellbeing. Dr Lang and colleagues used a measure of quality of life called the CASP-19 and found that smokers experienced lower average levels of pleasure and life satisfaction compared with non-smokers. The difference was even more pronounced in smokers from lower socio-economic groups.

In short -- smoking doesn't make you happy.

Dr. Lang and his team carried out a study involving 9176 individuals aged 50 or over, who took part in ELSA, the English Longitudinal Study of Ageing. The studies for the research categorized people as never-smokers, ex-smokers and current smokers, and used household wealth as an indicator for socio-economic position.

Said Dr. Lang: "We found no evidence to support the claim that smoking is associated with pleasure, either in people from lower socio-economic groups or in the general population."

He added: "People may feel like they're getting pleasure when they smoke a cigarette but in fact smokers are likely to be less happy overall -- the pleasure they feel from having a smoke comes only because they're addicted. These results show smoking doesn't make you happy -- in fact, it is associated with poorer overall quality of life. Anyone thinking of giving up smoking should understand that quitting will be better for them in terms of their well-being -- as well as their physical health -- in the long-run."

Adapted from materials provided by Peninsula College of Medicine and Dentistry.

Hope you found this post useful
Robert Drysdale(Biobob)

Friday, March 7, 2008

Drug side effects

I totally agree with you about the drugs and the side effects of them, most of the ones shown on TV have more things they can cause than things they can cure.
I sure wouldn’t like what those drugs were doing to you, I once took Buspar and it worked fine then several years later I tried it and I was so woozier and shaky I couldn’t even get up with out hanging on to something, so that was the end of those, I flushed them down the pot. I know you said you aren’t a hypochondriac but I think I might be to some extent, I mean I can’t even watch a medical show on TV with out getting the willies thinking that sounds like something I have, lol. I know it is silly. But even with that, I don’t like to take meds, there are a couple I guess I do need but not a lot, the point I am getting at is I am afraid of what some meds can do to a person’s body, and they preach all the time about how bad smoking is,
I guess the really best way to stop smoking is just to make up your mind and not touch another one, and I do definitely know how hard that is to do, I still have times I would sure like to have a smoke but I just tell my self that that isn’t going to happen and with in a few seconds I have given up the idea.
I think I am actually finely starting to feel better than I did before I stopped smoking, I was starting to think I have goofed up by stopping but now since I think I finely got over what ever it was that I had, I can breathe easier and not as short of breath.
I know one thing you have going for you is you really want to stop and maybe if you think of the positive things about not smoking it might help you. Just think of all the new shoes you can buy with the money you save, lol.
You remember how much accomplishment you felt when you stopped for those 5 days? Well you can get that back again and even if you fall off the wagon again, just keep trying and if you make it longer each time then in a while you will stop completely and you will pass the point of feeling you are compelled to light up when those urges hit. As I have said lots of times, it isn’t difficult for me to not smoke, in fact one of my daughters was just here and she asked me if I was sure it was ok for her to smoke, and I said sure, it didn’t bother me at all other than it kind of stinks.
Anyway, I am glad you aren’t on those meds any longer, I can almost tell from your writing that it was messing up your disposition you seemed more aggressive or something not the way you usually write.
Ok, good luck to all.

Thursday, March 6, 2008

Pharmaceutical Drug Roulette

I feel the need to update my post about stopping the Chantix. It finally occurred to me that I also started a new antibiotic called Avelox on the same day I started taking Chantix. I figured that maybe I should take a look to see if Avelox had any side effects.

The side effects of Avelox are just about as bad as the Chantix. In fact, there are whole forums devoted to how bad Avelox has effected people. Joint pain is very high on that list along with feeling out of it. There were many more listed that sound like how I feel.

So, which drug did it to me? I have decided that I am not going to take the Avelox anymore either. I know that you are not supposed to stop an antibiotic in the middle of the cycle but right now I couldn't care less. I refuse to play pharmaceutical drug roulette any more.

Are some of you wondering if I am a hypochondriac? Let me assure you, I am not. I have never had problems with an antibiotic before or any other prescription for that matter. I don't go looking for symptoms and then start having them by power of suggestion. It is just very clear to me that one (or both) of these prescription medications have caused some uncomfortable and unwanted side effects.

I really don't trust the pharmaceutical companies anymore or the FDA quite frankly. I have always thought it was ridiculous how you see a commercial on television for a drug and then they run down the list of possible side effects. Most of them sound worse than what you would even take the medication for.

After having a son with a speech delay and possible high functioning autism, I have also seriously started questioning vaccinations and flu shots. Maybe I am becoming paranoid or cynical at the ripe old age of 34? I just think our safety was sold out a long time ago. As much as possible, I will stay away from prescription drugs.

Yeah, I smoke and that is stupid. I recognize that and will quit. I think at the beginning of this blog I gave myself a time frame of sometime this year. It will be sooner than later. My point is that I don't want to sound like a hypocrite for slamming the drug companies while I smoke a drug daily. Let's just say that Phillip Morris (and all the other tobacco companies) were the first to try and kill me.

Usually I am rather upbeat and easy going. I am not sure if I am fed up or if this little rant has something to do with a mood side effect from Chantix or Avelox. I am sure I will wake up tomorrow in a much better mood. Lord knows I won't be taking ANY pills tomorrow.

I Am Stopping The Chantix Due To Side Effects

This would have been my fourth day on Chantix but I decided to stop taking it already. I did not like the side effects from it. Today would have been the day that I started taking two pills (you start out on one and work up to two). I figured if I hated the way it made me feel on one pill then there is no way I could handle two. Then by next week, it works you up to an even higher dose per pill! Nope, not for me.

By the evening of the first day I took it, I had a rather strange lower backache. My back never hurts so that was very unusual. The backache stayed with me all three days that I took the Chantix. My whole body felt very heavy and sore. My legs were achy and tired. I was also rather lethargic and felt very tired mentally as well. I have also been in a rather pissy mood.

Of course, many people might say that the symptoms above had nothing to do with the Chantix. I know myself and what is normal and what is not normal. These things were NOT normal for me. I made the decision to stop before it got too out of hand. Since I did not take my pill today, I already feel a touch better. My mind is not as cloudy although I do not feel as sharp as usual yet.

I Googled back pain and Chantix and was very surprised (and relieved) to find out that A LOT of people complain about this when using Chantix. In fact, everything I mentioned seems to be fairly common to the drug. Then I read about a lot of people having more extreme symptoms once they STOPPED using Chantix due to withdrawal from the drug itself. I know I am better to stop using it now rather than stopping from a higher dosage.

This is just my experience. A lot of people love it and seem to have no ill effects. On the other hand, my Google search came up with thread after thread of negative discussions about Chantix. Everybody is different and it makes sense that the same drug can cause different reactions in different people.

If you have used Chantix, please relate your experience. Good or bad, I would love to hear what you think about it.

Quit Smoking Video

Good food for thought:

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Not too keen on those side effects

Being the hypochondriac that I am, I sure would not like the side effects of that med. And I talked to two people about smoking or not smoking actually, one is the guy that brings our shop towels , he had been a non smoker for 5 years now, and he did it the same as I did, just put them down and not let himself pick one up again, he said he thinks the only way to quit is not using the patches, gums and all the rest,, you just have to be able to tell yourself NO,,, and mean it, and stick to it .. I know that is hard to do but I kind of tend to agree with him.
Then the UPS lady was there today and she is wanting her hubby to stop smoking as he already has some copd. She mentioned the med you are taking and she said she has hear some bad things about it,, and from what you just said, I kind of think it has some unpleasant side effects. In some cases the cure is worse than the ailment..
I wish what ever frame of mind I got into that night I decided to quit would happen to you and everyone else that is trying so hard to stop smoking,, I already said this before but as much as I smoked and for as long as I smoked it was really not that difficult,, I pretty much just told myself , enough was enough and in a way I even kind of dared myself by leaving my cigarettes on top of the frig, so every time I opened the door to get a soda or anything,, there they were,, right at eye level. As a matter of fact, they are still there,, way too stale and strong to smoke now anyway.. but as I said,, I am stubborn and once I make up my mind on something I intend for it to be just that way .
I don’t know, maybe slap yourself on the cheek every time you want a smoke.. lol.. well better not.. might look like you were in a prize fight after the day was done.. lol.
I think I said I didn’t use any substitute but I think in a way I did.. I like peanuts in the shell, so I got lots of those and when I would be here at the computer I would crack and eat them, that is something that takes two hands pretty much so that kept my hands busy, if I ate canned peanuts I would still have one hand free to smoke with… I now one guy that is now hooked on sunflower seeds since he started chewing on them when he stopped smoking.
I know it seems like I am writing a book but if I and help anyone in any way to stop smoking I would love to do that, and it is rewarding to me to get to say , I don’t smoke anymore,, that isn’t to say I look down on smokers, and I never will, I feel they don’t have many rights anymore and I don’t feel that is fair at all .
Well, good luck to all . Vernon

Chantix Day 2

Here is a quick update on my Chantix journey. Today is my second day taking it. Here are some things I have noticed so far:

Side effects:

  • I feel kind of "out of it" or a little loopy
  • definite indigestion (burpy). In fact, I woke up twice in the middle of the night from sudden hiccups! That has never happened before.
  • Very flat emotions. Not happy, not sad but very.... flat.

I guess I can deal okay with these side effects. None of them are dramatic and I will just keep monitoring how this pill makes me feel.

Now, for the effect it has had on smoking:

  • Already by day 2 on Chantix, the cigarettes taste yuckier
  • I find myself not wanting to smoke the whole thing

I was planning on giving the Chantix a full week before quitting again. I have a feeling I won't wait that long. If there is no enjoyment in smoking at all, why bother? That must be the whole point of Chantix. I will keep you updated!

Monday, March 3, 2008

just keep pegging at it

Kelly, don't beat your self up about giving in to having that first smoke after 6 days, I don't know how many times I tried to stop in the past but never got through more than a day. The main thing is to be persistant, and with that new med I bet it will help a lot, my foreman at work took some kind of med, I don't know what it was but he said it cost over 100 dollars or a Rx. It might have been the same thing and he did quit by using it, he went through the lolly pops for a while though but no smokes, and his wife was going to stop too but she couldn't make it so he has the same thing you do. the spouse smoking, I am sure it would make it a lot harder to quit.
LOL. I bet your hubby thinks you won't quit and that way he won't have to either.. but you will show him and then you can see how much trouble he has in stopping. lol..
I went back to the Dr. Friday , maybe it wan't the stopping smoking that caused me some trouble like I first though, the dr. said I had infection in my lungs, at least that is what he told me but with the antibiotics and the second round of steroids which I am not keen about, I think I am about back to the way I used to be, he told me too, that a smoker gets a little shorter of breath for a while after stopping as the tars etc. are coming loose from the lungs.. Anyway I never heard or though of anything happening from stopping but it is all supposed to be temporary so that isn't bad,,
Ok, keep at it and I think this med will help and I know you have the drive to stop , and that is very important in success.
I hope the others on here are having success as well and I know if they keep trying they will stop smoking too even though it might take some time and a few set backs.
Good luck to all.

I Am A Quitting Loser!

I am hanging my head down in shame when I tell you that I broke my quit. On day 6, I just couldn't shake the all day crave and I gave in to a smoke like the addict I am. I went 6 days...... 6 days!!! How could I go back to it after that long?

My doctor wants me to try Chantix. I got the prescription filled today. I was thrilled that my insurance company did pay for most of it. I took my first pill today and I will see how it goes.

I have heard of a lot of success stories with Chantix. In fact, a few people have left comments on this blog about their success with Chantix. On the other hand, I have also heard some bad things about it too. Interestingly enough, two of my closest friends are using it right now to quit smoking too. I didn't know that and found it funny that we are all trying to quit at the same time. I asked them if they have had any bad side effects from Chantix but neither one of them has. They both feel that it is really helping them. Sooooooo, if they are liking it then I am going to give it a try.

I will tell you how my Chantix journey goes. I hate to point fingers but I am going to point one at my husband anyway! If only he would try to quit with me at the same time, I think it would be so much easier. While I risk soundy whiny, I must say it is hard to quit smoking when your spouse continues to do it. At least I was able to get a time frame from him. He said that he would quit once I have stopped smoking for three months. I see it as him buying himself some more time but I am going to hold him to it!

The way it works with Chantix is that you take it for a week and let it build up in your system. You can still smoke during that week. Then, you can either start cutting back or stop altogether. I will probably pick a day for early next week and stop. Cutting back has never worked for me before. Of course, it is painfully obvious that stopping altogether has not worked out the way I wanted either! There is one thing that I can guarantee: I will never stop quitting until I really quit. It will be done!

If you have a Chantix story, please share it here with everyone. Also, where are all of my quitting buddies?

Thursday, February 28, 2008

congratulations Kelly

I am so glad you finely made it, I know you wanted to stop smoking very much, and I agree for some reason it isn't hard for me either not to give in to the cravings and the longer you go with out smoking the easier it is to not even think about cigarettes, but I do still think a smoke would sure go good about now but I put that out of my mind right away and that is all there is to it for a while.
I am still having some breathing problems I am wondering if it has much to do with my stopping smoking or caused by something else, it is very annoying to have that little wheezing , whistling sound at night,, kind of like I swallowed a duck call or something.. lol
But I am like you, I don't intend to go back to smoking for one thing the money I save is already showing up to the good and since I don't smoke now I realize how stinky smoking is to others. but, I am not going to tell anyone they can't smoke when they come to my house since I smoked so long I am not going to become one of those ex smoker radicals.
I hope the rest of the folks on here are having good progress as well ,I know if they just keep at it they will succeed..
Keep up the good work Kelly.

I Am A Non Smoker!

Hey everyone. I wanted to tell you what has been going on since I posted last. I tried to quit on February 21st. I did great most of the day and then broke shortly after my husband came home with his handy little pack of Marlboro Lights. That was that and I smoked the rest of the eveninng and the next day.

I woke up Saturday morning and the first thing I thought of was that I had bronchitis! My son had been sick the week before and I must have caught it. I ended up feeling really rotten and my chest hurt horribly. I had a fever and slugged around all weekend. I had two cigarettes on Saturday. The last one I had Saturday hurt and I threw it out before I even smoked half of it. I went the rest of the day without smoking.

When I woke up Sunday, I figured I might as well not smoke because it hurt too darned much. I went all day Sunday without smoking. I woke up Monday and thought, I am this far into a quit so I had better not smoke today either. It was really very easy compared to other times probably because I was sick so I went with it.

Today is Thursday and I am on my fifth smoke-free day!! I have absolutely no desire whatsoever to smoke. Sure, I have felt withdrawl and have heard "that voice" a time or two. The difference is that I truly do not want to smoke this time. My chest is still in an uproar from the bronchitis and now from not smoking.

I am so excited because I know that this is it! I never want to go back to the smoking lifestyle. I do not want to go outside in the freezing cold to get my fix. I don't want to go out on a warm summer day and ruin the fresh air by smoking. I refuse to harm my lungs any further. From now on, I will let my body heal and hope I did not do too much damage.

After I stopped smoking, I came across a website called WhyQuit. If you have not been there, go now. It scared the living crap out of me! Sure, I have heard it all before but for some reason this site really made it sink in. It helped to diminish the feelings of withdrawl. Maybe it was my recent birthday that helped me this time. I am not getting any younger...... the time to quit for me is now. I did it and I will never go back. Not one puff, not ever!

How is everyone else doing? Mandy? Vernon, you still doing great? Dru, where is Dru??? Gigi? And you?

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

New to blog

I found this blog by accident,but since I stopped smoking late last December, I got very interested in reading the posts, I check it sometimes more than once a day.. I emailed Kelly to try to encourage her success in stopping smoking and she emailed back from time to time to let me know how she was doing, but I didn't know how to get into the blog so she invited me and that is how I happened to be here.
I don't know how it seemed so easy for me to stop smoking I have smoked for over 45 years and at least two packs a day but one night I just decided that I have been a slave to cigarettes and decided to not use them anymore, or maybe I should say,let them use me. So the next morning as usual, I grabbed the cigarettes, but instead of lighting up, I took them all in the kitchen and put them on the frig. I didn't completely throw them out just in case I couldn't stand to not have them.
Anyway it has been a while now and I haven't had one because I pretty much know, one leads to another and soon back to my old smoky self.
And I am having some problems that I didn't have before , like the coughing and the wheezing I don't know if the night sweats are because of not smoking or not but I have them some now I don't think I am any more irritable that before but there are some effects of stopping , I am guessing those things will go away in time, I hope so anyway.
the main thing anyone that really wants to stop,, I would just say be stubborn and not give in to those triggers and I know there are lots of them ,they pass fairly quickly and as time goes on they get a lot less difficult to over come.
Of course I have times I would love to have a smoke but when I get those feelings I just say to myself, "you don't smoke any more" and I immediately think of something else and ..LOL... one thing that always helps is the though of $6.00 per day I am saving that is over $2100 per year. that makes something very easy to think of when that urge hits.
Well, I have blabbed on long enough and said very little I am afraid , but I know for those of you that really want to stop , you will be able to accomplish it, I know everyone says this.. but if I can stop anyone can.. even my kids are amazed as they though I would never stop..
Good luck.

Who Wants To Quit Smoking February 21st?

Tomorrow is February 21st. According to the almanac, that is one of the days in February that is a good day to quit smoking. A supportive friend suggested checking the almanac because a lot of people swear by it.

So far, Mandy and I are quitting tomorrow. I thought I would throw it out there to anyone else that wants to quit smoking. Sometimes it is easier to quit when you know other people are doing it at the same time. As they say, misery loves company!

If you would like to join us tomorrow on our quest for better health, let us know by commenting here. Actually, why not become part of the community too? There can be up to 100 writers on this blog. I would love to see this become somewhat of a quit smoking forum. We could all talk about our experiences and be in it together. You don't have to be a "writer" to post here. Heck, I am not a writer, I just play one on the internet! Let me know if you want to write on the "forum" too and I will get you in.

Thank you Deanne for your well wishes. You sound like you are doing great! Your attitude and sense of humor will get you through it.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Roses Remedies and Realities

Well here I am day whatever and still not smoking, yipee for me! I'm going to the gym, not having my evening cocktail, eating healthy, blah blah blah. I should be doing jumping jacks.
I quite frankly don't feel like it. No Roses here, I miss whatever I thought I enjoyed, although everyone in the world spent millions telling me I didn't enjoy it. My mother who quit over 25 years ago to this day occasionally wants a cigarette! But by damned I made the decision to quit and this time, I'm going to stick to it. Resolve - WOW!

Remedies - The bottom line is there isn't any one remedy that will make quitting any easier. I like to skim the blogs at night to read about others trials and tribulations or quit smoking schemes as I call them. They read like an old traveling salesman selling snake oil!

I am using Chantix, it's worked for me. Cold Turkey works for others, cutting back works for some, smelling old butts, smoking 3 or 4 packs at a sitting, the list goes on and on. No one miracle cure for a disgusting habit.

Reality check - You the quitter has to decide that you WANT to quit. ARM yourself with what you think will work for you. Make up your mind and just go for it.

Give up your triggers, talk to yourself - have pep rallies by the minute if you have to better yet by the second.

Prepare yourself for Bitchiness (yeah I'm using that word, not "crabby"), Short Tempered, the worst type of PMS you've ever suffered in your life. Be prepared to eat more food. (food actually does taste better).

Saving Money now that's a reality I kind of like. I've decided that for every week I do not smoke, I'm going to reward myself with $30.00, that's approximately what I spent each week on my nasty little habit.

When I get off the $75.00 worth of medicine I'm taking monthly for HBP and Low Cholesterol medicine - there's another savings.

BUT wait, I'm spending $50.00/month on Chantix and $35/month on going to the gym.

I should still come out to the good by about $100/month give or take.

Post Quitting Reality Check - I'm tired most of the time, I'm suffering from insomnia and I feel like I could hack up a lung. But I'm hoping this too shall pass with time.

Roses it aint but by quitting they sure do smell better!
Remedies that work for you the individuals,
Realities - it's hard as hell to quit!

Kelly/Mandy I'm rooting for you :)


Monday, February 18, 2008

Wagons, Bottles, Smoke Signals and Turning 50!

I admire everyone that's is trying to quit smoking. What an endeavor. Gather the wagons up in a circle, pass the bottle of vodka around (no wait, don't I'll want to smoke), send up the smoke signals and hang on!

I officially quit on February 7, 2008 for the umpteenth time, after threats and warnings from my doctors and friends. What really turned the table for me was my brother who was 39 years old, DIDN'T SMOKE dropped dead of a heartattack on August 25th, 2 days before my 21st wedding anniversary. I had been doing great up until that day, only occasionally smoking AFTER work on the porch with my husband. I broke all my rules that day and smoked like a freight train. What an excuse for me, my brother died so I wallow in cigarettes, knowing full well I'm 30 lbs, no let's be honest 40 lbs overweight, on 2 kinds of blood pressure medicine and to add insult to my injury now cholesterol medicine. Not a med in the world until I turned 47. I'm digressing, sorry.

Anyway, watching my parents bury their only son, is something I wouldn't wish on anyone, especially since he was the "healthy" one and of course the baby in the family.

So I came home, and plodded along bitching about smoking, being fat, being on medicine and drinking too much. Doctors still hounding me........all the while.

I sat down with myself in late late December and took a real hard look at my health, my life, my family, you know blah blah blah.......bottom line i was going into my 50th year of life and my health SUCKED. No one could fix it but little 'ole me (no wait that's big 'ole me).

I laid a plan. Not on New Years Eve, I'll blow it. SO, i started back on Chantix (GREAT MEDICINE by the way - I'll digress here somewhat, I have some really shall we say VIVID dreams, and believe me my body knows when those little receptors are starting to act up and man is it time to take a little blue pill (Chantix is blue - amazing huh?) and I do take that pill FAITHFULLY.

Back to the Wagons, Bottles and Smoke Signals. I was circling the Smoke Signals with my wagon slowly - no smoking from the time I left the house until I returned in the evening. I hated that ride home. Now I've gotton used to it.

Then I started back at the GYM oh hell yeah, I've done the gym thing before......but this time it was different, it wasn't about being skinny or svelte (I have never been svelte but I love that word), it was about getting off these damned old cigarettes and all this medicine. I was a picture now imagine, me huffing and puffing trying to get through an hour of exercising. 5 minutes on the treadmill did me in at first! Everything ached, popped and cracked. Still Circling in my wagon.

On February 7th I said no more, I smoked my last after 5 cigarette that night at 8:15 pm and held on..........Amazingly I did ok, (of course I went to bed at 8:25!) The next day was tough, it was Friday! My husband & I always meet all of our friends at the local bar for you guessed it Bottles and Smoke Signals (most of our friends smoke). Add alcohol and we can entertain ourselves for hours!

Friday night, So, here we are pulling up the watering hole (I had worked out for 30 minutes after getting off work went home cleaned up, loaded my husband up in the wagon and off we went) I decided ok, Deann you're not drinking tonight, you can't you'll screw up and smoke. SO I DRANK WATER!!!!!!!!!!!!! hey I felt great the next day and my husband didn't have to be the Designated Driver.

And so it goes, some days are better than others. Chantix does really curb your cravings, you don't come across as a total A$$hole because of mood swings, etc.

I know my triggers, as most of us do, I've learned to avoid them or change my habits
(man that's the hardest part). I finally drank last Friday night and never smoked a cigarette or wanted one. My friends have been very supportive. My husband has even cut back some, I guess he's getting ready for March 1st - when the house becomes a non smoking facility. But hey since I had left the bottles near the smoke signals, I have felt better and lost weight - not much but some!

I've rambled on long enough for one evening. I'll leave everyone with this thought I truly believe our government outlawed the wrong drug!

gigi50 (not quite yet)

Thursday, February 7, 2008

Write About Quitting Smoking

Hello. Do you want to quit smoking? Have you tried many times only to go right back to the addiction?

Have you already quit smoking? Do you have valuable advice to share with others still struggling with the habit?

If you answered yes to either of these questions and enjoy writing, then we want you! All of us here either smoke and want to quit, or used to smoke but have already quit. We write about the struggles and the nicotine addicition. We share different methods to stop smoking. We support and commiserate with each other's stories.

If you would like to write for this blog and be a part of this effort, please contact me at kb@kellfinder.com. Please put "quit smoking" in the subject line. Thank you!

Named In Ten Health Blogs to Watch in 2008

Here is what he had to say about us:
"Kelly wants to quit smoking, and she wants you to join her. She's smoked for 21 years, and she's only 33. She started blogging at the beginning of the year, and became a quitter a few days later. Anyone who's tried to quit knows how difficult it is, and if they're trying again, they don't have to be alone. Kelly's already coping with the familiar triggers, and is undergoing some hypnosis for assistance. She's sharing the bumpy ride with others in hopes that it helps them too, let's hope the road gets smoother along the way. We wish her
good luck."
Thank you for the good wishes and the inclusion in your article. I would also like to thank my Quit Smoking Together partner Mandy for all of the time and effort she has put in here.

Monday, February 4, 2008

Quit Smoking By The Almanac

Okay, I all but disappeared for awhile there. So has my focus on quitting. Lately I have not been putting forth any effort into quitting smoking.

I have stopped the hypnosis sessions. They were having absolutely no effect on me at all. I think hypnosis could be very useful to quit smoking if you find the right hypnostist. Apparently I did not find someone who could help me. I cannont justify spending more money to find another hypnotist so I am giving up that idea.

Now, none of what I said above changes the fact that I want to quit smoking. I do plan on quitting and just need to find the right time. Someone who reads this blog has periodically emailed me with support and advice. He has suggested to look at the almanac for a good day to quit.

Saturday, February 2, 2008

Two Non-Smokers Walk Into A Bar

On February 1st, Maryland banned smoking inside bars, restaurants and private clubs statewide. For those of us who do not smoke but enjoy the imbibing of alcoholic beverages in tavern settings, or at the very least like to have a meal out without hacking on the pollution wafting over from the smoking section of the restaurant, this is a great day for ex- and non-smokers in the state.

With that piece of joyous news, allow me to relate the events of a week before, as several very intoxicated friends and I traversed the still smoke-filled pubs of Fells Point in our quest to keep Bass Ale in business and attain new highs (lows) at table shuffleboard.

Here we all were: my boss, several co-workers, the spousal accomplices of some of those workers, and myself, all quite drunk and behaving rather, well, like silly drunks. The bar was Alexanders, a nice little establishment with an upstairs bar that offers such things as a Wii, a table shuffleboard, darts - and no windows. The air was thick with cigarette smoke, and after a couple of hours in this environment my urges for having a smoke were about to overcome my common sense.

I asked my boss for a smoke. Knowing I had just hit the eight month mark since quitting, he flatly refused. I asked one of my buds, and he also declined. They both told me I was stupid for picking it up again, and I knew they were right; I also knew I had been breathing their second-hand poison for a couple of hours, and was dead drunk to boot. I turned and asked a stranger, and got my cancer stick.

Oh, dear. Since I quit smoking, I have no reason to carry a lighter. My boss would not light me up. Neither would the bud. Again, I turned to a stranger, and got my light.

Mistake. I took that first drag and nearly threw up on the spot. The pain in my lungs was excruciating. However, being stone cold blitzed, I took another drag - and it hurt even worse than the first one. I threw the cigarette into the ash tray, happily proclaiming smoking as something that will firmly stay in my past.

There was nothing refreshing about it. It didn't taste good. It hurt my chest. It smelled like I was sucking on an ash pit. There was not one redeeming factor in those two drags, and they damn near put me off drinking for the rest of the evening. In a word - yuck!

Last night I returned to that same bar with a friend. Same upstairs, same shuffleboard, same crappy scores - but no smoke. How nice to be able to enjoy a few beers and not exit the bar smelling like a trash fire, or spend my evening wishing there were more oxygen available so I could differentiate my beer buzz from asphyxiation. My friend and I happily consumed large quantities of beer, secure in the knowledge that we won't come out at the end smelling of ash trays, or acquiring lung cancer to accompany the cirrhosis in our livers.

Good show, Maryland!

Friday, February 1, 2008

I Have Officially Fallen Off Of The Wagon

I admit it; I have officially fallen off of the wagon. Since my last post, I have gone back up to a pack a day. I recovered from the mechanic’s bill but…my dogs are driving me crazy! I think that stress must be my trigger.
As my Texas Medical Freak readers know, I have a nurse named Odie who is a miniature American Eskimo. But, Zuzu has never made an appearance on the web. Zuzu is a 13 month old, Jack Russell Terrier and is not much of a nurse. As any JRT owners know, they can be a hand full. But, she has been really getting into trouble lately. I am starting two wonder two things…she either has retractable thumbs and/or she is really a ferret? The other day, I went to the store and I was not gone 15 minutes. When I got home, I discovered that she had got the lid off of my Excedrin Back & Body that I take for my fibromyalgia. She is fine I don’t think that she ate any of them but I still can’t find the lid! She always gets into my closet if I forget to shut the door and hides one of my shoes, not both. Then the other day we came home and she had got the lid off of a can of mixed nuts. She is driving me NUTS!
I need to get back on track with this, I really do want to quit smoking.
Wagon photo thanks to Flikr

Friday, January 25, 2008

Smoking…what does it really cost?

Yesterday had been a better day on my not smoking. That was until I got a call from the mechanic shop…They were calling to let me know how much it was to fix one of our cars. $453.45 was the grand total.

I got to thinking, if I wasn’t smoking what all could I buy, with cigarettes just at $5.00 per pack?

• 4 packs = one month of internet service
• 10 packs = dinner at a nice restaurant
• 90.69 packs = fixing my car
• 392.99 packs = 7 day, 6 night hotel and airfare in Cancun
• 4574 pack = ’07 Saturn VUE Green Line Hybrid

The cost of this nasty habit is really sad when you think about it.

Photo thanks to Flikr

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Auricular Biomagnets ~ Day…I Lost Count

Since my last post and my shopping fiasco, my Fibromyalgia has flared up. I am all stiff and my joints really hurt. I am feeling like I am 100 years old. This has really made it hard for me to stick to my quitting. I have not felt like doing much of anything and feel bad about not posting. One of the only things that has made me feel better is…American Idol. Last year was my first year to watch it and I can’t say that I am hooked but, I do really like the beginning, the middle and the end. Here is one of my favorite bad ones, hope that you get a laugh too.

Photo thanks to Flickr

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Auricular Biomagnets ~ Day 3

Yesterday (day 2) was really hard. I wound up spending the entire day shopping for cocktail attire for an awards banquet that we are going to this weekend. I have been to busy watching my favorite shows and not “What Not To Wear” to know that the “New Black” must not be black after all. First of all, I hate to shop especially when I have to go to the mall. It is really hard to find appropriate clothing when you are 40something and not a size 4. I wound up exhausted and frustrated. Two really great smoking triggers…I am trying not to be too hard on myself. I have cut down from a pack per day to 5 or 10. Yesterday though was another story 15! Then, I wake up this morning and all of that shopping flared up my Fibromyalgia. I am all stiff and my joints really hurt. I am feeling like I am 90 years old. Then, my husband tried on the new dress shirt that I bought him yesterday and oops…wrong size. So, off to the mall again. No telling what I am going to fell like tomorrow.

Despite all of this, me making this much progress is a major accomplishment! Like I have posted before, I have tried just about everything. So, I am still hopeful that these Biomagnets will finally do the trick and end this addition with nicotine.

Photo thanks to Flickr

It Is Just Time To Quit

I had my second hypnosis session yesterday. I feel like this one was better than the first. I felt more relaxed and possibly "hypnotized". It really is hard to decide if I feel like I was hypnotized or just relaxed. My guess is that if I have to contemplate it so much, I was not really hypnotized.

So far, the hypnotism has made no difference at all. The therapist asked me how I have done the last week and I told him that I had nothing to be proud of. He seemed surprised to hear that I have still been smoking. I sure hope that I am not his only patient to fail!

There are still three more sessions left. I am not holding out much hope for hypnosis to be my magical answer. If it was going to work, I think I would see signs of it working by now.

I admit that I have put no effort into quitting at all. Here I have started this blog to help myself and to help others and have not even tried. What am I thinking?? I WANT to quit, don't I? Yes, I truly do. I just wish I could figure out what is holding me back. What is it in my mind that so tightly holds on to these things?

Right now, I have about three cigarettes left in my pack. It is snowing out and I expect that school will be let out early today. I have no plans of going out to buy anymore. This just has to be it!

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Not the First Time

I am wondering how I did it before. This is not my first time that I have tried to quit smoking. There was actually once that I started considering myself as a non-smoker. It was somewhere around six months that I quit. I remember sitting at a party with a friend and my brother on my first trip home after joining the military. I thought, "I am not a smoker I can have one and not need another. " Of course that didn't work, even when I went back to duty I was a smoker again.

I am also remembering the time I quit for 2 months. This was the time my wife (ex wife now) was on a "Business Trip" the day she left I stopped smoking. When she came back 2 months later she actually yelled at me for not smoking with her in the car on the way back home.

I am thinking about these two past trials, where I feel, although not long enough, they were successful. Why did it seam so easy then. Why is it so hard now. I can say I didn't smoke today, I did however find a co-worker that had some nicotine gum. She gave me three pieces. It works pretty good and I just tore open the second one.

I like the gum thing but I am still going to continue on my path of nicotine free.

Tommorrow I have court again so we will see how stressed I am when that is over.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Horrible Weekend

I can not believe the grip these dried up leaves have on me. I went all weekend without the Xbox since my daughter grounded me. Yes I know that is funny, picture a 33 year old man sitting at the kitchen table getting a lecture about how I have disappointed this poor 11 year old girl. I hung my head low and said, "I am sorry I will try better."
Friday night went pretty smooth I was able to continue on with my thrill of being able to play Madden 2008 if I didn't smoke the whole night. My daughter had a friend spend the night so I was able to go the whole night without smoking and she allowed me to play Tony Hawk with them to see if I can help them unlock some more area's in the game. We all got up on Saturday and had breakfast, I stayed away from the coffee and had some Soda instead since I have realized drinking coffee and having a cigarette go hand in hand with each other. Then we went to the Mall. Going though the mall with two girls almost in their teens and a 3 year old is always fun. I am lucky that my kids are used to hearing, "I can't buy that right now I need to wait until payday." They are to the point that they barley ask for anything anymore.
After lunch we decided to go into a movie, this is always safe because if I am going to pay that much money to go to a movie there is no way I am going to miss some of it so I can smoke. So by Dinner time I was feeling pretty proud of myself for not smoking at all. After dinner we went to my daughters friends house where neither of her parents smoke anymore so it was pretty easy to go without there also. Then the girls came up with this great plan, they were going to spend the night there Saturday night so they could get up in the morning and go to church together. So me and my youngest daughter packed our things and went home. We were home long enough to get our PJ's on and make some popcorn so we could sit down and watch a movie, when my girlfriend came over with her daughter. So we made a little camping environment turned the movie on and ate popcorn. About half way though the movie my neighbor came over, he was bored so he decided it was time to bring a beer over and hang out. The kids were watching the movie so the 3 adults sat at the kitchen table playing cards and the other two were drinking their beer. My neighbor decided to go for a smoke, That ended it. All day again and here we are, my oldest isn't around to see me. My girlfriend and neighbor got their jackets on and said, "We are going to go Smoke." My youngest daughter looked at me and said, "Daddy, you can have one"
I couldn't believe it... So I had one, then 2...
Needless to say I failed miserably again on Saturday...
Sunday was actually a very good day, nothing exciting happened after church so we all went home and hung out without any smoking.
Monday was okay, I ended up having 2 during the day at work, my smoking buddy at work was getting lonely so he begged me to go with him.
So far today I am doing really good, I haven't had one yet but I have eaten a lot of Pretzel's today.

Monday, January 14, 2008

Auricular Biomagnets – Day 1

Today, I finally received my auricular biomagnets. I found them on eBay at the beginning of the month, after looking at Zero-Smoke and decided that I did not want to pay $39.95 plus shipping. I wound up paying $9.99 with free shipping on eBay, as a “buy now”. I checked today and the price ranges for the ones listed now are $9.99 - $11.87. I would suggest if anyone else is interested in trying this method to pay the extra $4.00 shipping for USPS Priority Shipping.

The reason that I decided to buy these in the first place was last summer I had auricular acupressure done and I think that it would have worked if I would have gone back for another session. Why didn’t I go back? Simple…insurance would not cover it.

So far, I have only had 5 cigarettes today and this was before the biomagnets came. As soon as they arrived I put them on. Have I had cravings, yes I have. I don’t think that this will be easy but, I do think that it will wind up working. My biggest problem so far has been noticing my hypocalcemia (low blood calcium) more than I normally do. Hypocalcemia can make you have facial and hand twitches. This drives me nuts and makes me want a cigarette!

Who Is With Us?

I was thinking about who might be reading this blog. Are you a regular reader here? Do you want to quit smoking? Do you smoke and this caught your attention?

I would like to help myself by quitting smoking. I would also like to help YOU! Please tell me your thoughts on this subject. Is there anything else you would like to read here that you would find useful?

Has anyone been inspired to quit smoking? I am full of questions here today. Help me out and tell me what you are thinking :)

Friday, January 11, 2008

Is it really Friday

Wow, on top of trying to quit smoking it has been a busy and very stressful week. I have been regreting coming to make this post. Last night I broke and cheated.
So unfortunatly I have smoked a total of 3 times this week. I am pretty upset with myself but more upset that my Daughter caught me.
I am back on day 1 of not smoking. I am grounded from playing XBox all weekend and I now have to do the dishes tonight after dinner instead of her.

Well, I fell off the wagon but I ran and jumped back on. At least I can say I have not bought a pack in 5 days.

So day one - redo
I am not as bad off as I was on the origional day one. I actually bought a bunch of cany cane's that were on sale and have eaten about 6 of them.
Hopefully, I will stay on the wagon this time. I want to play xbox and didn't want to do the dishes tonight.

Unique And Creative Tip To Stop Smoking

Yesterday, I received a comment on my medical blog about “Kicking The Smoking Habit” from The Cheap Gourmet and she agreed to let me share it with all of you. This is a great and very creative tip. While you would look a bit funny using this in public, it would be great for the car and home.

“My mom quit smoking last year after being diagnosed with lung cancer. She cut a drinking straw to the same length of her cigarette. Next, she tightly rolled up a paper napkin and inserted it into the straw. This gave her the effect of actually smoking because the napkin acts like a cigarette filter. When she "puffs" on the straw, she gets a similar feel as if she were smoking the cigarette.

Nine months later, she is still smoke-free and once in awhile she will reach for her "fake" cigarette. She smoked for nearly 50 years and this was the only thing she used to quit. I wish you much success on your journey and hope this tip helps you.”

My First Quit Smoking Hypnosis Session

I had my first hypnosis session on Wednesday evening. While I was driving to the appointment, my quit smoking theme song "Time For Me To Fly" by REO Speedwagon came on the radio! I took that as a great sign considering that is an old song that you don't hear very often.

The appointment went fine. During the hypnosis, I had to wear a pair of glasses that have flashing lights and also a pair of headphones. There was music playing and the therapist talked into a microphone that goes to the headphones. When he first started talking, I really had to control myself so I didn't start laughing. It just sounded funny and dramatic.

Was I actually hypnotized? Well..... I am not sure. I was very relaxed. I felt quite sleepy but heck, I am always tired anyway. I was able to imagine the images he spoke of such as being on a tropical island. My mind did wander a little bit but that is supposed to be normal.

You are supposed to come out of the hypnosis feeling very refreshed. I still felt tired and could not stop yawning all the way home. For the rest of the evening, I felt kind of sleepy and out of it. My husband claims to have had a conversation with me that I have absolutely no recollection of. I just discovered that yesterday.

The strange thing is, I slept very poorly that night. I kept waking up and it took awhile for me to fall back asleep each time. That is extremely unusual for me. I also had a throbbing headache that added to my being unable to sleep. I would have thought that I would have had a restful and peaceful sleep that night. Could the flashing lights in the glasses possibly have caused my headache?

Do you feel that I am beating around the bush? Isn't there a burning question related to this post? You probably want to know....... have I stopped smoking??????


This is how it has gone. I have been smoking less. I will think of having a cigarette and then realize that I don't really want one. A little later, I will think of it again but put if off. By the third time I think of having one, I do. I see this as progress because my usual cigarette is now delayed by about an hour and a half. Therefore, I am smoking quite a bit less.

Also, I find that I am not particularly enjoying the smokes. They kind of taste nastier than usual. They make me feel gross once I am done.

This was the first of five hypnosis sessions. I believe that with each session, you will smoke less and then not at all. Of course, it would help if I threw the darned things away and didn't buy anymore. My husband pointed that out to me last night. Thanks for the clue Sherlock. I guess I was just hoping that the hypnosis would make me not even consider having a cigarette no matter what.

I still have high hopes for the hypnosis. I need to make much more of an effort myself. The fact that I am able to easily put off having one when I normally would leads me to think that it has had some effect on me.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

End of day 3

I can honestly say that sleep deprivation is a side effect of not smoking. Here I am 4 hours before I have to go to work. I am weak, I have torn though my car, my jackets and anywhere else I may have dropped a cigarette. I know if there was one in the house I would have sniffed it out and smoked it by now.
Instead I figured I would sit in bed and type up a little something.
today was pretty rough, and very stressful. On top of this not smoking thing I had court today. Another day I sit there trying to get child support and get told that we need to come back in a couple of weeks. I spent 8 hours in court today waiting to be told that nothing was going to be happening. So here I am wanting to smoke but can't dealing with a system where I have never seen a mother have to go though this to get a father to pay child support but over a year and a half I am still fighting for it.
I am also trying to decide if the fact that I am very depressed right now has to do with quiting smoking or going to the grocery store tonight and having to decide on toilet paper or milk. Then I also got a not home from preschool saying they will not allow my daughter there next week if I do not catch up on what I owe them. So daycare or electricity is going to be my choice next week...
I need a smoke...
Actually this would be the perfect time to sit in a hot bathtub with a big fat chew pinched between my lip and gums.
ohh well... I keep saying to myself, "once you get child support you will be able to get the bills caught up." problem is the mother of my oldest has not paid in 9 years, this one probably won't either... A man in family court is always a bad person. I got custody but I am "not a real man" for wanting money from a woman... Ohhh well. The life of Dru is always fun.

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Day 2 - beginning of Day 3

I still do not believe any ex- smoker when they say that the smell is disgusting. I love the smell of lit tobacoo. I can not get enough of it. I want it on a train, in the rain, in a box with a fox, in a house with a mouse. I like smoke, Sam I Am, I like it here and there I like it everywhere...

Day 2 as you can see I think I am close to the mental hospital, I am crazy, I am waiting for the straight jacket. I ended up in bed last night at 7:30 because bed is the only place I have never smoked and didn't remind me of smoking. Is this normal? Am I suppose to be this weird? The crazier I get the harder it is to stay away.

I actually felt great this morning and didn't even think about it on my way to work so let's see how today goes...

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Hypnosis To Quit Smoking Is Scheduled

I made an appointment for a hypnosis session to quit smoking! Actually, it is going to be the first of five sessions. It is set for 5:00 tomorrow so I have just about 24 hours.

I really don't know what to expect. It is going to be five sessions so will it "take" after the first session? Does it take all five sessions to really stop smoking?

I have never been hypnotized before so I am very intrigued. I am looking forward to it even as just a relaxing experience. With three young sons, I could use some relaxation.

The therapist that I spoke with said that his success rate is very high. Of course, I would not expect him to say otherwise. He talked a good game anyway and I have high expectations. I even mentioned that my husband smokes and how I anticipate that to be a problem (again). He told me about bartenders who are surrounded by smoke (must have been before all of the smoking bans) who had no desire for a cigarette after the hypnosis.

I will let you know how it goes......

Day 1 - It has only been a day!!

I really wish I could respond to rhe comments from my posts but since I am doing all of this from my handheld I may have to play around a little first.

So first things first... I made it from waking up this morning until now smoke free. 12 minutes till day one is over. I will not give up. This is to important to my daugters.

I did feel like I was missing something all day. The triggers that I had tracked the last week were dead on. I really had a hard time driving by the gas station to pick up a pack. I do think driving is going to be what drives me into the looney bin:
1. Since I started smoking at such a young age I have never driven without smoking.
2. I usually have a cup of coffee or Mt. Dew in the car with me. My second addiction, they go SO good together.
3. 90% of my time in the car is without my kids.

I have heard people talk about the "triggers" in the past I never realized the you could have a trigger inside of a trigger.

I do have a few benefits for quiting right now that is helping me. (I am mainly posting this to remind myself.
1. My children are very manipulative.
2. I am excited to quit a very long part of my life.
3. My children are very concerned, and manipulative.

I do not know if it the excitement of quiting or a side effect in itself, but I have had a lot more energy than usual and I am having a hard time sleeping. Which is really surprising because I have had about half my coffee intake than I usually do.

Thanks for the comments everyone. BTW, The Pillow Addiction is the next goal (that is a great post Ghostly)

$4.35 saved today.

Monday, January 7, 2008

Day 1 - Dru's quit day

Wow, not even lunch time and this is getting difficult. I actually was surprised last night I finished my last pack at 12:00 am. So I woke up this morning with out the ability to smoke. Everything was already gone. I was able to get out of the house fine without smoking but then the coffee and car ride to work killed me. Yes, killed me... I can honestly say this is going to be very hard. I am not a macho man and do see myself break down in the fetal position by the end of the day. If I can only make it though work. I brought the 3x5 cards to work that the kids made me and posted them on my desk. One of my smoking buddies walked though my office on the way to the morning smoke break and I actually caught myself thinking, "is it really that important that my daughter thinks I smell bad."
I am realizing that coffee is a very large trigger. Every sip makes me want to warm my lungs with the refeshing warm smoke.
All of this and I have only been at work for an hour.
THIS SUCKS, maybe I should start this quiting thing tomorrow... :D

Sunday, January 6, 2008

Good Luck To Dru Tomorrow On The Big Quit Day

Tomorrow is Dru's big quit day! I wanted to wish you good luck. On second thought, I take that back. Luck has nothing to do with it, does it?

Instead, I hope that you stay strong. I hope that this is the quit that will stick. Just think, five years from now you can look back on this and chuckle. You can think "It was not so hard after all" and feel very proud of yourself.

Don't forget to let us know how you are doing. We will be here to support you and listen to any vents. You CAN do it!!!

Thank You To Our Readers For Support And Advice

It has been a great experience starting this blog. I have met some really nice people through this experience.

A reader took the time to send me an email. He offered support and encouragement. In fact, he has just quit smoking himself and had some great advice to offer. He agreed to let me show his message here on the blog. Here it is:

"Hi, Kelly, first off I am 60 now and have smoked for 45 years and for over a week now I haven't had one single cigarette, and believe me to have smoked as long as I have that is pretty amazing. I am not saying I won't fall off the wagon at some point but I intend to not smoke ever again, and the thing is, I always enjoyed smoking and smoked over two packs a day, I know it has taken a toll on my health but when I was smoking I just ignored that. Now, no longer than I have not smoked, if I am around smokers, it really stinks , I had no idea it was so bad and I can actually breath better..

Well , that isn't much to do with how I stopped smoking, the thing that happened was I was sick a while back and I had to go get a smoke before I could even go to the bathroom, I got to thinking how much of a slave I had let myself become to cigarettes and when I went back to bed I made up my mind I could do without them, I don't know why it seemed to be easy but you know when you first get up, the first thing you want is a smoke? well I got that feeling alright but I just fought off the feeling for the need and in a very short time that urge passed and was fine for a while , then after I ate, I though I needed one, and after a shower.. all the things that always triggered the need for a smoke I had to fight off. And I still have urges to smoke but it is now easier to fight off those feelings. I had though also about being hypnotized but never did try it although I know of folks that did it and it worked but you still have to fight off the urges later as I understand it, those will come back but it isn't as difficult to fight off those urges.

I know I really haven't done a lot to help you in your fight to stop smoking but I will say , if you really set your mind to it and stick with it no matter how you think you just can't stand it, those feelings will pass , but of course they will come back so it is a never ending battle but after a while you will not find it hard at all to just tell yourself that cigarettes are not allowed by you and you will whip the habit.

You are still very young and I am sure not much damage has been done to your health as of yet so if you can manage to beat this smoking addiction you will live a much fuller life.

Well that is my two cents worth,, the main thing is, you are wanting to do something about you smoking..

Bye now.


Saturday, January 5, 2008

Two days of Smoking Left

Last night I made a great attempt at cutting back on smoking before Monday gets here. The pipes froze in my apartment yesterday so me and the kids went to my parents house. GG (the kids Great Grandma) is visiting so after dinner we sat around and played cards. This means that after eating and helping the dinner cleanup I didn't go out for my ritual Cancer Stick.
About 5 hours later when the little one was asleep and my older one was getting ready for bed I grabbed my coat and started to head outside. Now came another situation that made me realize how important this is to my daughter. GG started with her lecture about not smoking like she usually does and my oldest came in the room and said, "GG, he can smoke all he wants right now without anyone yelling at him, so please leave him alone. Monday we can all yell at him." Now GG may only be 4 ft. tall but believe me she is a scary woman at 89 years old. I was very impressed that my 11 year old felt strongly enough about this contract to yell at her Great Grandmother.
Part of the contract that me and my daughter signed states, "Prior to the date above no one is authorized to comment on the smoking habits, unless this poses health or saftey risk to those around Dad. After the date choosen above Dad is not authorized to get mad or upset if someone throws out, or destroys any tobacco product or reminder of a tobacco product."
It looks like this is going to be held up 100 percent on her end and is ensuring no one ruins the deal.

I Am Considering Trying Hypnosis To Quit Smoking

I have thought about trying hypnosis to quit smoking for a few years now. I don't know why I have not gone through with it yet.

I do know someone that it worked perfectly for. He was one of my dad's friends. When I talked to him about it, he had already stopped smoking for eight years. He said that after the hypnosis, all desire to smoke completely vanished.

Today, I started looking up hypnosis centers in my area. I am going to call a few on Monday and see what they have to say. If it works, it will be well worth the cost (which I am still researching).

I think I just talked myself into it! The real hindrance to my success in quitting has been my mind. If someone can re-train it for me, I would be most thankful. Lord knows I can't seem to control it even though I am its owner!

If anyone reading this has experience with hypnosis, please chime in. Maybe you tried it or maybe someone that you know has tried it. I am interested in hearing all experiences whether they be positive or negative ones.

Friday, January 4, 2008

Healthy Food Alternatives For Cravings

I thought of this post because one of the biggest excuses for not quitting smoking is “I will gain weight!” I for one do not want to gain weight or loose the progress that I have already made. Besides, I think all of us that are involved with this group are mainly quitting smoking for our health. So, here are a few healthier things that we can put in our mouths other than cigarettes or other tobacco products.

  • ½ cup – Baby Carrots (raw) = 35 calories, fat 0 g, carbs 8 g

  • 1 cup – Celery (raw) = 17 calories, fat 0.2 g, carbs 3.6 g (Celery is actually “negative" calories since it has diuretic properties)

  • 1 cup – Broccoli (raw) = 30 calories, fat 0.3 g, carbs 5.8 g

  • 1 cup – Cauliflower = 25 calories, fat 0.1 g, carbs 5.3 g

  • 1 cup – Sunflower Seeds (with shell) = 262 calories, fat 22.8 g, carbs 8.6 g

I found the calorie counts on Calorie Count Plus, this is a free service and it is my favorite for looking up servings and calorie breakdown information. I use Everyday Health for weight, food and glucose tracking (it is also free, I love free stuff). I have found that, Calorie Count Plus is easier to look up food values. In either service you can put in your own recipes and find out what you are really eating, sometimes this can be scary so beware. You can also find more information on Kicking The Smoking Habit that I posted on my blog.

The Past Week - Preparing

4 Days until I Quit-

It has actually been longer than a week since my daughter pulled my Heart strings and got me to sign the contract to quit smoking.

Every day quiting has been on my mind. I have noticed that quiting is going to be very painful and I can honestly say I am scared of the thought that in just a few days I am going to lose the comfort I have had since the age of 9.
I am not only a smoker but I am also addicted to chewing tobacco. I started chewing at age 9 and began my smoking habit around age 13. That is a total of 24 years of experience with Tobacco products. It is kind of amazing but very scary that my daughter is now 2 years older than I was when this adventure started for me.

That has been my main thought this week, "I can barely remember a time that I haven't had Nicotine to comfort me." The closer I get to the QUIT DATE the more fear I have. But then again the more excited I get.

I am going to let you all know that as a single parent and the only adult in my house I am going to have a few benefits at home. I do not have to worry about the trigger of someone else in the house smoking. I also have two very persuasive (manipulative :D ) daughters that are showing a lot of concern and support for me.

So far in my travels of the preparation to quit smoking I have realized when I smoke.
Before getting in the shower in the morning, as soon as I drop the kids off at before school care, once more on the way to work. Once I am at work it is usually after the morning meeting and whenever I finish a project. At lunch it is as soon as I leave the office and as soon as I leave where ever we eat. After work is where I believe I have the least triggers since I do not smoke around the kids. I have noticed that the drive home I usually have 2 in the 20 minute drive but sometimes 3. I may have one between getting home and the kids go to bed. This, I noticed, is only if I am on the phone. Once the kids are in bed then I am your typical chain smoker. I do also have the one chew per day and that is at night while watching a movie in bed.

My next step is to figure out what to do at the times I am used to my Nicotine fix.

Can You Quit Smoking When Your Spouse Smokes?

My husband smokes too and is rather uninterested in quitting. He thinks that there is no way for us to quit at the same time because it would cause us both to be in horrible moods. He wants me to go first. Gee, thanks!

He claims that once I have quit for several months, then he will quit too. There really is no point in trying to convince him to quit with me sooner rather than later. No one can successfully quit smoking unless they actually want to quit.

The fact that he smokes too has led to my undoing in previous quit attempts. I can't blame him as I must take full responsibility for myself. However, it certainly made the situation much more difficult. Here are some reasons why:

  • I could smell cigarettes on him and it made me crave them
  • It started to make me mad. If he CAN smoke, why CAN'T I??? Why does he get a reward and I am being deprived? (that is the way a brain enduring withdrawal starts to think).
  • I knew his pack of cigarettes were somewhere! He tried to hide them but it drove me nuts knowing they were somewhere very close by.
  • After dinner was the worst. He would go outside to smoke after dinner and I couldn't join him. Jerk!
  • Back to the fact that I knew his cigarettes were somewhere. I was able to resist the urge to hop in my truck and go to the closest gas station to buy a pack. BUT, I knew they were somewhere in my house...... AH HA, I found them!!! Puff...... puff.....

How about you? Have you ever successfully quit or at least tried to quit and have a spouse that still smoked? Any helpful tips that you can share with us?

Thursday, January 3, 2008

The Stop Smoking Contract

I read this story in a blog and it brought tears to my eyes. It is sweet and kind of sad at the same time. I say sad because those of us that are parents who smoke, often don't realize how it affects our children.

This is the story I read. I am re-printing it with the author's permission. His blog is Dru's World and his post is entitled "The Smoking Challenge":

"Sometimes I am just amazed at my oldest daughter. One of the gifts I received this year might be the most thoughtful gift I have ever recieved. My daughter is now 11 and of course in school she has learned how bad smoking is to you and the dangers of smoking.

I am not sure how she came up with this stuff but when I was opening presents this year for Christmas she had wraped a package and what was inside made me feel a lot of emotions. All at once I felt happiness, love, pride, and most of all Fear.She had made this present from her heart that was for sure and the first thing I saw was a note,

I love you but this present is for your daughters.

So I continued on though a small package. The next thing I saw in the package was a Contract already signed by my Oldest Daughter and a Scribble Mark from my youngest. There was a space on the contract for me to sign. This Contract said that I would try to quit smoking on Monday, January 7, 2008. On this day I will allow my daughter to throw away all my cigarettes, Lighters, Ashtrays and anything else she believes causes me to smoke.

After I read though it I noticed that there was a pen in this little package and some 3x5 cards. There were little things on the cards that my daughter wrote. "Dad, I want you to see me Graduate from High School." and "'Dad, I want you to see me go to my Prom.' 'Dad, I want you to see me get married.' 'Dad, I want my children to know you.' 'Dad, we Love you.'"
This brought the tears, I quickly grabbed the pen and signed the contract. I am looking forward to January 7th, 2008. I feel it is going to be a great year."