my first day of being smoke free was today! i feel so proud of myself, its kinda nutz! i had a wisdom tooth pulled and was unable to smoke, drink beer, use a straw, chew stuff.. generally felt like shit and slept thru the pain with some ipuprophen and hydrocodone. i followed the guidelines strictly. i was a good girl. then the day came when i was allowed to have a cigarette. i refrained for fear of dry sockets. and then the next day was "Vice Day" i drank two glasses of wine and smoked 3 cigarettes 5 days after my extraction. the cig tasted lame. was it stale? or did i eject a little monster from my system for a few days long enough to make the smoke taste bad. i hope i will never know. i decided that maybe i could smoke only when i drink.. and how convenient that i was going to be goin out and drinking pretty much every nite that week due to seeing my bro and sister off out of town, dancing, shows, whathaveyou. and i realize that it was easier and convenient that way. all the while i was reading Allen Carr's famous book about quitting smoking. it was making a lot of sense. the principals are really interesting, very basic and i was intrigued by the simplicity of the ideas. if i follow the book i realize that i have to look at cigarettes as something that don't bring me pleasure, as a crutch i DON"T NEED. Smokikng doesn't enhance situations. i could go on and on but after reading the book and seeing teh studies, its really true. why do all smokers envy non smokers? smoking feels pleasureable but really pleasure is not having that fucking foul itch and craving to smoke in the first place. at least that's what i think....so if i don't think cigarettes bring pleasure and are actaully hurting me, why would i even want to smoke when i'm drinking? that's when we get to associations.. how many shows have i seen that i feel have been enhanced by the puff of a cigarette? plenty. how many times have i associated the idea of being creative, playing music, sewing, generating great ideas that require commitment and concentration....with smoking? even more plenty.. how many conversations seemed more real when a cigarette was involved? a lot. especially in college, when i was really getting into the whole i dea of new music, being away from home, putting myself out there, being confident in who i was....cigarettes were always there to keep me whole..to have a reason to sit and spark up a conversation with someone..to make a friend. what do you do when you feel cool for the first time in your life because you are doing your own thing and you go to a show? you smoke. and you feel uncomfortable without a smoke because you're just standing there in all your new found confidence that is also a lil bit scary since you're not used to it...and well, you're A-Ok becasue you are there with yourself and your cigarette being fine and feeling good checking out a band you just discovered, feeling that the smoke represents independence. Maybe it did at one point for me, but i refuse to believe that i need a cigarette now to feel confident. shit, college is way long gone and at age 33, i think i've grown up and learned how to assert my independence. i don't need a crutch. i've learned that my body is God given healthy and happy and capable of feeling pressure and going thru both stressful and happy times without a cigarette...i know its the associations that are going to be the hardest. its going to be dancing, when smoking actually (ha) gives you a breather. The shows and feeling how wonderful it feels to stand so close and see a band you adore perform so loudly, so fiercely...you've waited months for this show. and its here. So we shall see how this goes.. But if i may go on a lil self reminder for a moment, i've crafted a few things i need to remind myself before i start hittin up the streets again. 1) i don't the the crutch of nicotine to live. happy/sad/stressful situations i've survived w/o cigs, i am entirely capable now too! 2) Smoking doesn't bring me pleasure.. in fact its killing me. it breaks my concentration instead of enhancing it, it brings on more stress than it reduces because i'm jsut going to stress about when i can have the next one. the amt of enjoyment i tell myself i get from smoking is miniscule to the amount of uncomfortable i get from wanting a cigarette and not being able to have one. think about it. it sucks when you can't have a cig and really fucking want one. the itch blows. 3) Smoking doesn' keep me closer to people. i can't associate relationships, close friends, fond memories of college, shows, parties, boyfriends, etc with cigarettes. the cigarette didn't make the relationship better or more meaningful , and it didn't make the music sound better. In fact, its physically impossible to hug someone your hardest when you have a smoke in hand. cigarettes keep me from connecting to people, not remaining closer. 4) the nicotine trap. everytime i don't smoke, i'm reducing cravings and killing the little monster inside me that wants another one. the monster is dying right now because i've not smoked all day and will continute to die. I"M STRONGER THAN THE MONSTER, and i won't be brainwashed that its enjoyable to smoke anymore. I dont' want to be a drug addict, a slave to nicotine. 5) How good does it feel to be a non smoker? well i felt awesome today after jogging and coffee knowing that my body would survive w/o. i wanted one at work a little bit but reminded myself how fucking proud i'd be if i went all day w/o a smoke. so i didn't. I don't have to be in a nicotine prison if i don't want to be, and ik feel powerful to break free from the jail! i'm Nelson Mandela, whoo hooo!! People who smoke want to do it too, i'm the envy of the smokers, who wish they could quit, yeah, go go go !
but so yeah, i will limit my smoking blogs to few.. most likely posted after shows where i may or may not smoke cigarettes at...we shall see. but for now, i am loving this day and lookking forward to waking up tommorrow..Cigarettes take the genuine me out of me, and i dont' want that. they don't make me a whole person, or the person i already see myself as or want to become.... they don't make me special, unique, cool], have more credibility, hip, intelligent, outgoing, creative, driven...none of these qualities are due to cigarettes. any of them that i possess i do for a reason, because i'm me, not because i'm a smoker. or an ex smoker? There isn't a void smoking fills or a quality that smoking gives me. except yellow teeth and irratibility when i don't have one. so for now and hopefully longer than now, i'm done... i deserve more credit than that, more life than that, fuckin A!!!