Today is smoke-free day 246, and I'm back in Oregon. It's funny that I still consider Chicago more my "home" than Oregon where I currently actually live. I lived the first many years of my life in Chicago, and all of my family is still there, so it's "home." All that to say that I'm back safely home in Oregon where I actually live and that even with some devious thoughts during the trip here and there, I did not smoke.
It amazes me that a few beers combined with an opportunity to smoke still seem so dangerous to me even this far into not smoking. Really. It all turned out fine, and I know that other folks do just fine even in smoky bars with smoking friends long before this point, but it all goes back to the different paths thing that applies to things like how we each react to drugs like Chantix and also how we react to life as a non-smoker, each being individuals that bring our own different selves into the process complete with body, mind and spirit that are our own. It's possible for me to still entertain briefly the idea of having a cigarette after a few beers and an opportunity, but it's just as possible for me not to follow through with it because, frankly, I don't want to take a chance of going back to smoking and having to someday quit all over again. Just knowing how I am and what triggers I still have is also kind of like coming "home" in the sense that it is extremely familiar and that I'm perfectly content with where I am along my path simply because it's mine to walk, and I'm still not smoking.
My dad's surgery is still scheduled for Wednesday, and he's in good spirits and in good hands with family. I couldn't stay in Chicago longer, but we had a great visit, and I'll be "home" in spirit.