Saturday, October 27, 2007

It's a Process

Today is Smoke-free Day 131 (disclaimer).

I've said plenty of times that for me the whole quitting smoking thing is definitely a process and not just a simple one day you are a smoker, the next day you aren't kind of thing. With Chantix, it's even more fun because it adds that extra layer of days when you are on it but still smoking the first week (or longer, like me, until Day 13), then still on the Chantix but not smoking (in theory 12 weeks, unless you get creative due to side effects or taper off Chantix - under doctor's supervision, of course), and finally, off Chantix, still not smoking, and hopefully feeling better about the whole thing. Most days.

My point is that it's kind of hard to pinpoint any exact day that my mind caught up with the idea that my body had actually already gone non-smoking. Sure, as of June 18, 2007, I became a non-smoker, a person who doesn't smoke. But someone who once did - and that makes all the difference. Since that date, I've been growing into my new non-smoking skin, getting used to it, alternately loving and not loving it through days both easier and more difficult. I'm still not all the way there yet, wherever it is that I think I'm going, which I guess is just further along the path away from my quit date.

I'm not sure that I'll ever feel quite the same as someone who was never a smoker. I'm content with this and not complaining, just noticing and wondering aloud (or whatever it's called in writing). I do absolutely expect that several years from now I will not be giving the whole not smoking thing nearly as much thought as I have the past four months, and I do expect that it will be super rare that smoking thoughts, let alone any tuggings or whispers, will be a part of my mind's landscape as they still are now here and there, off and on, depending on the day.

I say all of this because while I was driving around minding my own business the other day, I happened to notice a sign with cigarette prices. My first thought, literally, was "Wow, that works out to $3.32 per pack, which is way cheaper than $4.28 at the grocery store." As if any of that matters or is any of my business at all. I had to laugh and just remember that it's a process, and I'm getting there, but I ain't all the way there quite yet.

And I'm thrilled that I'm not spending all that money along the way, especially since the cost could be going up drastically, depending on how folks vote on Measure 50 in a couple of weeks. You can probably guess how I intend to vote.


  1. Wow Maggie, you have come so far and have such a great attitude! I wish you lived near, for that matter, I wish most of the people I've met blogging lived near me - what a time we would have!
    But, this will have to do and I'm okay with that the same as I'm okay with smoking.
    I was thinking about that today, that without the Chantix I would definitely still be smoking. I hope I can come off it like you did and still keep a sane mind.

    Congratulations on another day Friend!!!!

  2. I'm still waiting for my mind to get caught up, too. I totally agree with you about being a reformed smoker is way different than being someone who never smoked. Only someone who has smoked can understand the experience and the difficulty in quitting. By the way, I am definitely planning to taper off the Chantix (it makes a lot of sense to me to do so). I'm going to my Dr. on Tuesday to get my next month's supply, and I think I'm going to tell him to prescribe the starter pack all over again, and I'm going to do the process backwards. I'm hoping to only need Chantix for 60 days instead of 90. Keep strong, Maggie!

  3. Congratulations on being an ex-smoker. They say after 3 days you won't want one but it's been 5 weeks and I'm still chewing my nails off. But I am pretty determined so I know I can keep with it. Good Luck! You must be very proud.

  4. MamaFlo, it would be awesome if we could all live close. So many great people.

    Bob, good idea to talk with your doctor about tapering using the starter pack backwards.

    Jennifer, congrats on 5 weeks! I agree that it isn't always easy, but you can do it with just enough determination.

  5. I'm laughing right now thinking about the 8 pounds of meat in the chili recipe. Are you a vegetarian? If so, believe me, this recipe would seriously gross you out. I have to say it was pretty good, and thankfully practically gone so I don't have to eat leftovers for a week.

    Stay quit!


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