Elizabeth McCammon

"This quit program was the key for me. First thing the coach made me realize was that I was a "slave" to my smoking. I never looked at it quite like that."

I quit January 22, 2007 my official quit day and I'm still smoke free.  A close friend of mine was diagnosed with stage 4 lung cancer that first week in January -- funny thing is that he'd quit smoking 12 months before.  In 8 months the cancer took his life. 

I'm sure everyone has heard some story or other to "frighten" you to quit smoking....well this one was just a little too close for me.  I was on the eve of turning 40, was already wheezing and had bronchitis from fall to early spring every year.  The Doctors always said "if you'd quit, you wouldn't have this."  Well since I've quit, I haven't -- I'll never forget my last bout with it, sitting there taking a breathing treatment thinking this is just taking too long -- I need a smoke. 

This quit program was the key for me.  First thing the coach made me realize was that I was a "slave" to my smoking.  I never looked at it quite like that.  I had to make my children wait for me so that I could smoke before going here or there, I had to slip out to smoke at this or that event, all in all -- I had to arrange my time around my addiction so that I could get that cigarette in. 

The bottom line was, it had power over me -- and that bugged me, call me stubborn, lol, but once it was put in those terms -- no longer "I need it" to "it's controlling you"  I was set on a mission to change.

So for me, I used the mid-grade patch for 2 weeks, in the middle of that two weeks I'd say out loud every time I had the urge "I want a cigarette" -- because that was the truth and I wasn't going to deny it or lie to myself-- but then I also knew that I didn't want to give in to it and allow it to control me. 

All I know is that when I decided, that was it, it really was.  On Jan 29th -- seven days after I quit, my mother died.....and even then I knew I wasn't going to use it as an excuse to start smoking. 

Believe me I understand that it's an addiction, but more often than not, if your honest with yourself, it's a choice -- we choose to pick it back up, using excuses -- and then we're a slave to it again.  This time for me, no more excuses, I know that I will never smoke again.  (and yes, there are times when it still crosses my mind 1 yr 7 months later) 

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