Monday, January 4, 2010

it is really hard today, first day back at work after the holiday break. i really miss popping outside to have a little cigarette and a cup of tea break in the sun. i so far seem to have avoided the bad withdrawal symptoms; worst at the moment is feeling stiff and sore after playing tennis yesterday (exercise really does help).

playing tennis: john mcenroe doing what he does best. it is kind of what i look like when i crack it because i can't hit it like i want to.

for context: on a good day, i would smoke between 7-10 rollies (roll your own cigarettes). over 10 and above and up and up and never stop on a really bad day...

lots of quit advice says that you should try and keep in mind the reasons you are quitting, and bring them to mind when the cravings hit. carry them around on a little card. one of my main reasons is health. so my first card would read:

"lung. cancer. emphysema. stroke. heart disease. throat cancer and that voice box replacement that means you have a hole in your throat and a vibrator to speak. eye disease."

my next card will have to have something to counteract the little voice that says,

"what about those 90-year-olds happily puffing on their daily cigar and sipping their daily straight whisky and rum?"

via this paramedic's blog

via here

Depending on the number of cigarettes you smoke, typical benefits of stopping are:

  • After twelve hours almost all of the nicotine is out of your system.
  • After twenty-four hours the level of carbon monoxide in your blood has dropped dramatically. You now have more oxygen in your bloodstream.
  • After five days most nicotine by-products have gone.
  • Within days your sense of taste and smell improves.
  • Within a month your blood pressure returns to its normal level and your immune system begins to show signs of recovery.
  • Within two months your lungs will no longer be producing extra phlegm caused by smoking.
  • After twelve months your increased risk of dying from heart disease is half that of a continuing smoker.
  • Stopping smoking reduces the incidence and progression of lung disease including chronic bronchitis and emphysema.
  • After ten years of stopping your risk of lung cancer is less than half that of a continuing smoker and continues to decline (provided the disease is not already present).
  • After fifteen years your risk of heart attack and stroke is almost the same as that of a person who has never smoked.

january 4 2010
cigarette count: 0 (but REALLY borderline 1 before I go to sleep)
edit: cigarette count = 1
and it didn't taste good at all. it was a purely mental need, i didn't feel like the nicotine at all. the mental games begin?


  1. hey, you are on the right path. take it from me, i used to smoke a pack a day for 10 years,and i quit 6 years ago, and i can honestly say i dont miss it at all. it does get better.

    for me, i chewed gum like crazy for about two months, until one day, i forgot my gum at my house, and i realized that i didnt want to smoke or chew gum like an addict.

    best of luck!

  2. that was good timing - i was just getting really quite antsy, and bargaining with myself that i could pop out for one now, then make it up somehow later...thanks for the timely encouragement! i also have been smoking relatively heavily for over 10 years now (ages 21-33), and just want to stop.

  3. I quit for 3 years (2001-2004), then fell off the trying again this new year (you'd think that succeeding once would help, but it actually makes it harder for me...) and am glad you started this blog (found via your other blog, which I subscribe to), I find it very calming and helpful to know that there's someone out there, going through this shit, at the same time. You're doing really well, I believe in you! ;D

  4. thank you smallest forest for such kind and encouraging words. and i wish you all the very best with the quit, too!