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Jenn's journey of hope   Quit Stories and Journals

Started 8/23/15 by ModJenn (blakwolf013); 89544 views.
ModJenn (blakwolf013)

From: ModJenn (blakwolf013)

8/23/15

I have copied my journal in its entirety from the old site to our new home. These pages document my journey to freedom with all of its ups, the downs, and everything in between. I have been very blessed with lots of support and advice from the forumily. If my honesty, transparency, and vulnerability can make one person feel as if they are not alone it was all worth it.
 
In order to read all of the posts just click on "View Full Message".
 
Many hugs and much love to all,
 
Jenn
 
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I apologize for the length of my first posting. Once I started writing it appears I had a lot to say that needed to be on paper.
 
A challenge I didn't expect when I decided to start a quit journal was the problems I had coming up with a name. Here I am, someone who creates and writes for a living, teaches university kids how to think, and I can't even come up with a title! Oh, that's right...I'm still mired in the brain fog that smoking, not quitting, has given me. As the veterans keep telling me...this too shall pass. I'll admit I'm tapping my foot getting impatient.
 
Hope has played an incredibly large role in my life. I honestly believed I wouldn't make it past my 20th bday let along to my 40th. There have been a few along the way who never stopped believing in me and gave me hope. I have devoted many aspects of my life to do exactly that for others. 
 
I also don't believe I would be celebrating 36 days smoke-free without my Forum family. You have picked me up when I was on my knees pleading for this pain to end but begging for help to make it to the next day smoke free. Okay, I probably sounded like a whiny child but you ignored that and reached out your hands.
 
If you look up hope in the dictionary it says: (1) to believe, desire, place trust in something or someone; (2) the feeling that what is wanted can be had; and (3) a person or thing that gives cause for optimism. My quit journey has included all three parts of this definition. Over the years I lost much of my self-esteem and confidence. When I stopped smoking, this very loud voice in my head kept prattling off that there was no point to this exercise. I have failed epically in the past. Once a smoker, always a smoker. My longest quit in 24 years was about four months. This voice screamed I didn't deserve freedom.
 
The last comment may surprise some of you. Quitting smoking has been such an emotional journey for me. There have been many tears, feelings of frustration, desperation, doubt, and everything in between. On myfirst star milestone post, I describe living in a prison cell initially created for me but dutifully reinforced at my own hands. As the years went by it was the only world I knew.
 
The best way I can describe it is I lived in a dark tunnel. In my teens and early twenties I could see the light at one end of this tunnel. Why didn't I head in that direction? I didn't think I could do it or deserved to be there. For some reason, I was punishing myself. Then in my thirties, the tunnel grew so dark I could no longer tell in which direction the light should be, let alone where it was.
 
I finally mustered up the courage and started walking. I ended up in this cavernous room on Day 7 where I found the Forum. I have been so blessed with the love and support from everyone here. In that room, the veterans and my March quit buddies helped create a lantern for me so I could at the very least see where my next step would be on this journey. They believed in me, held me up, and continue to tell me this too shall pass and re-lit my lantern when the winds of life blew it out. Believe me, I initially said to myself quite sarcastically "yeah right". I am learning they may have a point.
 
I haven't made it to the light at the end of the tunnel yet. I still have a long way to go on my journey to be free from this addiction. But I now have hope...something I didn't have before.
 
I started smoking at 16 while I was homeless on the streets ~ not because I was rebelling against parental rules ~ due to escaping from physical, sexual, and emotional abuse. Frankly, the streets were safer than living with my father. I didn't get sucked into the world of prostitution or drugs. I just wanted to find a way to survive and finish high school. A lot of times when panhandling, people would give me cigarettes instead of food or money. Here my addiction started, my coping mechanism, my companion and friend, and many other junkie thinking illusions. I didn't have to work at liking to smoke. I didn't cough, gag, or get dizzy. I just smoked.
 
Over the years hope has been my lifeline. Now is no different. I hope by starting a quit journal I can give that forgotten child inside me a voice and help her see that smoking causes more trauma
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ModJenn (blakwolf013)

From: ModJenn (blakwolf013)

8/23/15

((Jenn)) - a great start to your Journal!!!!  I'm going to learn as I follow you....
 
Hugs
Foster
Foster  (AKA - Frank)                                Quit 2/02/12           
 
Frank's Quit Journal            First Year Smoke-Free Post            COPD Forum
                                      
   Photobucket
~ R.I.P.  Carol, Mary, Nita, Velma, Gaylene, Jo ~                     
Msg 60.3 deleted
In reply toRe: msg 2
ModJenn (blakwolf013)

From: ModJenn (blakwolf013)

8/23/15

Gosh Jenn, you've had a tough life.. and yet you've proved how strong you actually are. i think if you can survive on the streets, then go on to become an academic then you really have the guts and willpower to kick this habit. Just one thing.. will you send me some of that strength and determination my way. I applaud you Jenn. Well done on your wonderful achievement!!!
Hugs Jo 
In reply toRe: msg 4
ModJenn (blakwolf013)

From: ModJenn (blakwolf013)

8/23/15

Hello quit twin sister,
 
Do you hear the applause???  That's me in the front row clapping and cheering for you.  You don't need a light because you will hear my very loud voice shouting directions... sometimes from behind, sometimes from the front, but always within range because we can never be separated now that we found each other.
 
I love your journal and believe me, mine is even more rambly.  I can't wait to read your story, better than HBO or STARZ if you ask me!!  You inspire me and make me want to help you all at the same time.  Just remember, compared to what you have been through in your life, this is "piece of cake."  We shall get through this together, arms locked, united...  it may not be a smooth ride, but we can make it really fun.
 
Let's fasten our seatbeats now, there is a waterfall ahead....  were going over.
 
Diana
            photo winningheart_zpsa909ae07.jpg
Independance Day - March 23, 2013
In reply toRe: msg 5
ModJenn (blakwolf013)

From: ModJenn (blakwolf013)

8/23/15

Jo, I forgot. Quitting smoking is truly one of the hardest things I have embarked on so far in my life. You would think that dragging myself off the streets and clawing my way up was harder. Yes, it was hard but quitting smoking is hard in an entirely different way. It brings up so many other emotions and experiences in which I coped with cigarettes or hid behind them. It's much like my healing involves addressing these as well. 
 
Hugs, Jenn
xo
                                  photo winningheart_zps76630b97.jpg
  photo wolfstar_zps0272f2dd.jpg
In reply toRe: msg 6
ModJenn (blakwolf013)

From: ModJenn (blakwolf013)

8/23/15

Hey Jenn:
 
Just dropping by to again reconfirm that as long as you don't put another poison stick in your mouth, you will be a non-smoker.  You will get through all the trials and tribulations that you are currently going through.  Sometimes we allow our brain too much time to think about what we "used to do".  We are new, we are fresh, we are clean!
 
I am also a Canadian (Alberta) and I also quit in March (2011).  It is a great time of the year to quit in Canada as we are finally to the point where we can be outside more and not feeling closeted in our homes.  There is always so much more to do outside and much more physical as well.
 
I have been silently following you around the forum for awhile and I am pulling for you gal!  At least you caught the bug at a younger age than I did.  My first quit lasted 9 months in 2005 and then I made the mistake....1 in the mouth and that was it, was only going to smoke occasionally.......don't listen to that, it never works!  Then in 2011 all my social smoking buddies had quit and I was all alone standing in the cold smoking.  I thought what the H am I doing?  I got to the Dr. got Champix and started the journey.  I have now achieved 2+ years and I am happy that I am here and not back where you are!  However, you must go through it to get to the other side!  And you can!
 
Remember this is an addiction and think also of HALT...are you hungry, angry, lonely or tired?  All of those will give you thoughts of smoking...it's just something that we did in all those situations.
 
Keep noping girl, you will survive....we have!
 
DONNA
 
SMARTER THAN THE STICK - March 9, 2011
The words "I am..." are potent words; be careful what you hitch them to. The thing you're claiming has a way of reaching back and claiming you.

~A.L. Kitselman~
I am a non smoker!
 
         
In reply toRe: msg 7
ModJenn (blakwolf013)

From: ModJenn (blakwolf013)

8/23/15

 
 
It continually amazes me the true diversity of souls that are here on the forum.  I think it is what makes this experience so enlightening for so many. 
 
I really enjoyed reading the start of your journal, and I will look forward to sneaking in again and following it as you get farther and farther in your journey.  I think you will make it...no, that is not right.  I know you will.  You just seem to me to be on the right track. 
 
Thank you Jenn. 
Michelle
 
Switched my seat assignment to the non smoking section on January 07, 2013
 
 photo 67309-Royalty-Free-RF-Clipart-Illustration-Of-A-Team-Of-Colorful-Stars-Holding-Hands-Version-5_zpsc40ad15b.jpg
            
 If you can't breathe, nothing else matters
 
 Janu-Warriors '13
 
In reply toRe: msg 8
ModJenn (blakwolf013)

From: ModJenn (blakwolf013)

8/23/15

I can see someone smoking and have no interest whatsoever. Then I see my son's pack of smokes and I sometimes twang. I know if I were even to put an unlit cigarette in my mouth I probably wouldn't have the strength to resist lighting it. This goes beyond N.O.P.E. and perhaps enters H.A.L.T.I'm not sure. 
 
Thank you for watching over me. We all need angels to make sure we don't fall astray and get ourselves into trouble. You serve as a role model and inspiration. Apparently, that can be pretty easy to do when on this journey.
 
Lots of hugs, Jenn
xo 
                                  photo winningheart_zps76630b97.jpg
  photo wolfstar_zps0272f2dd.jpg
In reply toRe: msg 9
ModJenn (blakwolf013)

From: ModJenn (blakwolf013)

8/23/15

 
oh well me again....
 
If you read enough around here, you will find that most of us learn so much about ourselves during this quitting smoking process.  If it was only about quitting smoking, it might be so much easier, but it is not. 
 
And you are so right...it is a journey and a process, it is not a one time, I did it, now I am done kind of event.  It is kinda like washing the smoke stains off and finding what is underneath.  It is sure to be a suprise
Michelle
 
Switched my seat assignment to the non smoking section on January 07, 2013
 
 photo 67309-Royalty-Free-RF-Clipart-Illustration-Of-A-Team-Of-Colorful-Stars-Holding-Hands-Version-5_zpsc40ad15b.jpg
            
 If you can't breathe, nothing else matters
 
 Janu-Warriors '13
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