Formerly known as the About.com Smoking Cessation support forum, this community is open to all who are recovering from nicotine addiction.
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Good morning Lore!
I can't begin to tell you how grateful I am that I could be of any help to you! You've helped me so many times here, on more than one group or quit, and I didn't expect this!
My day started with this sweet feeling and now I'm sure it will be so much better than the last days have been!
Ana smiling from Lisbon :)
I feel like that too sometimes, but I really believe all addictions are a bit selfish. Unconsciously of course. All suffering is a bit selfish - maybe selfish isn't the right word, I don't mean this in a judgemental way, it's just that if all you feel is suffering it's hard to connect to others' feelings.
My husband was never rough with me because he needed a cigarette - but when he's hungry though... We'll be driving home from somewhere and he starts complaining and sighing at everything I say or do - that's when I pretend I don't notice his bad mood and sneakily suggest that we stop at the gas station. He complains some more, then stops, eats some sweet pastry... And immediately starts to smile and be his own sweet self again. See? We're all in panic mode when our blood sugar is low, and cigarettes make it go up. Just as pastries do :D
You weren't selfish, you were addicted and it was hard to think straight without your poison. That's only human! It's good to be so far from smoking that you are confronting what it actually did to you!
Your husband is also withdrawing from nicotine and may be extra sensitive at the moment. And yet you listened to him and didn't think he was selfish to complain about your past behaviour when you are dealing with withdrawal yourself! That's how selfless and generous and understanding you were. So pat yourself on the back! I wouldn't have been so sweet. It's difficult to be dealing with both your addiction and your husband's, you're being very brave! :)
Yes...I just wrote to Peggy, another Beautiful, lovely Soul on here, how you pulled me right back into the realm of the aware living spirits yesterday!
What you wrote was so accepting and grounding. And wise.
I only walked about 2 hours last night, as I was tired even with that late nap. I do think all of the romanticizing of cigarettes is exhausting! Seriously? I’ve had lovers wear me out way way less! Perhaps that is not Forum appropriate, but it is true! And if cigarettes weren’t one of our first deceptive loves, what were they?
Yes...this place is a refuge. Full of us kindred Spirits aloft on our journeys with this common thread...so wonderful we can be here for each other.
Today...I am grateful. Will blow a special kiss Eastward tonight! Seems all my dear friends here are East of me....hmmmm.
I feel undeserving but thank you! It's so good to know we can help the people who help us, at least a little bit!
Marge posted an article about that exactly! I think in the April group! About how cigarettes were the kind of friend we wouldn't put up with in real life!
Now that I think about it, they are the most demanding frenemy I ever had indeed! And I've met some manipulative people in my life!!
They still call for me once in a while but as I relapsed a dozen times just this year, they're losing their appeal I think... Tonight I'm going for a glass of wine with a friend I haven't seen in a while. This will be my first time out since the apocalipse. It's all still very scary out there but I've been practically locked in since March. I need a bit of freedom, even if just for a few hours!
I trust it all will be ok and I'll guard my quit with all my strength!
Yes, Ana, you need to go! You will be just fine. Just think about how not smoking you are touching your face so much less.
Enjoy your time. This is part of taking care of you and healing. Even if your friend smokes (?) just focus on the taste of that sweet wine and the moments that you are sharing and keep the cigarettes in your rear view mirror.
Yeah...I’ve met some of those manipulative folks too. Still...the only manipulating force we can control is the smoking. It is a bad friend and lover.
You are very deserving. It is funny how relapse can erode our view of ourselves, yes? But...as in many things, we have a choice on that view. Just turn those thoughts right around to see how strong you are to have continually gottten back up. If anything...giving up more than once can make that person stronger in the long run. Nobody is or should be counting and that includes you! You are where you are, and ultimately all we have is this very moment.
So, go, have fun, rejoice, enjoy your friend and know that you are having a much deserved and needed space!
I agree that relapse erodes our esteem. I felt like I shouldn't even bother, I could never do it. I thought I was too weak and stupid and didn't have enough friends and family to have a good support system. With every relapse, these thoughts and feelings grew more and more negative. I think confidence is coming with my quit. Not only am I more physically active, I'm pushing myself harder on walks. Bigger hills and longer walks keep coming. I'm more mentally active, too. Silly stuff like my cross-stitch and I'm more productive at work. I am seeing and feeling a change in myself and that's what I think is helping me maintain this quit. I feel better, I look better (my yellow fingers are gone) and I think more clearly. What a difference it has made! I admit, I am pretty scared. I have some 21 mg patches left, but not many and my husband bought the wrong dose and I'll be dropping down soon. I have lozenges as a back up, but I'm wicked scared. He suggested that I give the 14 a try and if I'm crawling out of my skin, we can go back. I've gotten used to this, but still have strong urges at times. I do NOT want to relapse. Has anyone here seen a huge difference when they drop down? Anyone else using a patch that has words of wisdom?
Yes...I noticed a big difference the first few days going from 21mg down to 7mg. We are all different though, so this doesn’t mean you will! In the grand scheme of things, if you need another week or so it is ok. Do what works for you. I noticed too that the directions on the generic vs brand ones were different. Generic said 4 weeks for 21mg and the brand said 6weeks. So that is a big difference in my book. I went with the 6 weeks.
Ok. Now. Sit yourself down and reread every you wrote so far and notice your progress. It is huge! I see it. We all do! It is so good! Look at what you just wrote about your walks. Go to the library tab at the bottom left and read things there. The only thing to really be afraid of is not sticking with it and starting over. Stay present and in this only moment with yourself and cross those stepping down bridges when they come.
It really will help you to look back at how far you’ve come. Like many things, we don’t notice the same things in ourselves as others do. This is the farthest you’ve gotten and you can certainly do one more hour at a time when you need to.
Will your hubby walk with you? If not, just keep going on your own. Push yourself like you have been. Use your phone and time it and go another minute each day. Get to the top of that big hill and turn around, catch your breath, go back down halfway and go to the top again! Then hum the Rocky Theme with your hands in the air! Yessss!!
You. Got. This.
Positive self talk. Make sticky notes and put them all over. Google little mantras and write them down and post them.
Also...there is another free 21 day Meditation with Deepak Chopra. It helps!! Free till some time in August. Let me know and I’ll send you the link.
I would love the link. Lord knows I need some relaxation in my life. The manta idea is great, too. Now I just need a mantra. My husband goes on walks with me but I always feel bad because I'm walking super fast and he is very fit and very tall, and kind of moseying along. He says it doesn't bother him, so I guess it's ok. I use an app called calm and it has meditations and sleep stories. If I'm feeling a little wired, I put on a story to get tired. They aren't riveting, but they shouldn't be if you are in need of some snoozing. Anyhoo, there was a meditation that the host was saying about wishing others well. He said to think of a loved one, and think "may you be happy, may you be strong, may you feel like you belong. May all of us be this way." You do this for a while, then you picture someone that's neutral to you and do the same thing. Then you think of someone you really don't like and do the same thing. Lastly, you picture the whole world, from spiders to Nigerians, and repeat it again and again in your brain. He added that it's a good practice to squeeze yourself in, either at the beginning or the end. I think that wishing everyone around me well has really helped my brain. When I'm at the grocery store and the clerk is crabby, I say that to myself, thinking about her. Kinda dorky...also, I'm not great in the self esteem department so my therapist gave me homework. (She's always doing that) she asked me to write in my journal 10x that I quit smoking and that's amazing. I am making good choices in my life and that's amazing. Super hokey but she said I need to recognize how hard this is and that it truly is a life-changing experience. I really am a work in progress. We all are. She told me that she was thrilled that I'm making meaningful decisions about my life. I think we should all feel this way. Proud of even 1 hour that we don't smoke. Those hours add up and time will pass. I'm glad I don't smoke anymore. I'm on the third week and it's hard, but I don't want to go back. That's all I've got.
I'd say you've got a lot!
That meditation sounds in part like Tonglen, a Tibetan Buddhist practice. I'm not sure if religious talk is welcome here. Anyhow the Lamas themselves, including the Dalai Lama, will always tell you that the Tibetan word for religion is halfway between religion and philosophy and I've read the Dalai Lama saying the only religion is a kind heart.
Tonglen also starts with someone you love, progresses to someone toward whom you feel neutral and ends up with everyone - if you are able to include someone you don't really like that's great. It's a great lesson in compassion. I think it would be beneficial to squeeze yourself in indeed! Even if your self esteem is not the best, you're worthy of the same compassion you dedicate to crabby clerks at least, do you agree? :)
I've been trying some pranayama! I have some trouble including mindfulness just like that. And of course my favourite YouTube fitness channel every day!
I love what you said about being a work in progress! It's so liberating to know that we're not written in stone and are allowed to change and be better than we were!!
Lore you were right! I did enjoy the glass of wine and to my surprise my friend has also quit smoking! Yey for all of us fighting for freedom!
This week is going to be a tough week at work so forgive me if I'm late for any party! I'll try and come check on you!
I'm happy that we chose this way :)
That is so great you got there to find your friend a non smoker too! I bet that was a big relief and allowed you to totally let your hair down and just relax with them. So nice.
Im thinking on your thoughts about the Dalai Lama. I’ve got a couple of his books. My favorite is “The Universe In A Single Atom”. Ahhh. To possess such grace and wisdom. I can’t speak for others, but for me, I don’t view his writings as particularly religious. He is one who speaks to connection and unity and acceptance of ourselves and others. I can’t imagine these thoughts being offensive really. Have not most great spiritual leaders spoken to these values as things to aspire to? Yes, there are other things caught up in the multitude and variety of scriptures and teachings, but the core of them is similar and I find this concept beautiful and uniting. I’ve never understood the need or reason to arguing things of such substance. If one finds peace and acceptance in any given way or practice, then, so be it. I am happy they have found a place to be at peace with themselves and only hope that they let that light shine outward to others. We all need to have a sense of belonging and acceptance on some level. One could even argue that the fellowship here is a bit of a spiritual sanctuary, yes? Except here, we are united against what we view as demonic and destructive... and we come together and encourage and lift each other and praise each other and support each other when we stumble. Yes...I view it as a gathering of like minded kind souls trying to forge our ways on our individual yet collective journeys. Such a beautiful process...
I sure hope your busy week is also full of moments of calm and centered joy and respite as well!