First Normal Weekend

Today is Sunday and this is the fourth weekend since I stopped smoking and I think I have made it into the land of the non smoker where the air is clear and I can see for miles!

This weekend I have felt normal and free instead of still being preoccupied by smoking.

I believe I can live without cigarettes and be just as happy without them, in fact I would say happier now that I am free from their slavery and can come and go as I please.

I am not even bothered about Christmas coming up and there is no doubt that this will be my first adult smoke free Christmas and I am looking forward to it.

I have many opportunities to smoke, after all, I know I am an adult and I can smoke any time I want to. I go up to see my mum quite alot and especially to look in on her dogs and let them out when she works at the weekend. My mum smokes and always leaves big roll up butts (urgh) in the ashtray along with her lighter. A couple of time, I have looked at them and thought that a drag wouldn't hurt, I pick up the roll up and smell it - it reeks, then I put it in my mouth and the taste makes me sick so I put it back in the ashtray. What would be the point? I am no longer addicted so where is the sense in smoking???? I don't even do that anymore, those roll ups in the ashtray don't even catch my eye.

I did have a dream though yesterday that I did smoke and was so annoyed with myself in my dream........when I woke up I was so relieved it was only a dream!!!

I hope everyone else is doing okay.

Lisa:D

18 Replies

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  • I'm glad you feel better, and normality is a big step for a quitter!

    I am no longer addicted

    Sorry, but yes you are - you always will be. One puff and you will be almost definate (something like 95% certain) to return to smoking full time within a few days.

    so where is the sense in smoking????

    There is none.

    Congratulations though, but you need to learn the 1st rule of addiction.

    "administration of a substance to a person addicted to that substance, no matter how long it's been since that person stopped using that substance, will result in re-establishment of that person's dependence on that substance".

    Harsh, but true. Everyone of us, as ex-smokers, has to live with that knowledge forever.

    I don't wish to rain on your parade, you really are doing brilliantly - but there's a long road ahead and we all want to see you succeed :D

    Being an addict is not the end of the world as long as you accept it. By accepting it and promising never to feed the addiction, being an addict doesn't matter at all!

  • I tend to agree with Stuart here,

    You are and will always be addicted, you are however no longer dependent.

    The fact that you are no longer fixating on cigarettes is a big step but the journey is much longer for most people. Indeed the fact that you had a smoking dream means that your subconscious has not let go yet!

    You are doing so well, but there is a danger that complacency could set in, you smoked for so long that curing yourself in a month would be truly remarkable, not impossible of course but still it would be amazing.

    So enjoy your new found freedom, but be careful to never let your guard down and be prepared for those random cravings that will come out of nowhere.

    On the whole though I am hugely impressed by your attitude and the success it has brought you.

    Cheers

    Nic

  • I did have a dream though yesterday that I did smoke and was so annoyed with myself in my dream........when I woke up I was so relieved it was only a dream!!!

    Lisa:D

    That used to happen to me on an almost daily basis between around the one month and three month points, so you can probably expect more along that theme, as your brain acts out the fight between the half of you that remains addicted (as the others have said, you will technically ALWAYS be addicted!) and the half that knows that acting on the addiction is stupid.

    Strangely enough, I had that dream again a few days ago (I was conscious of coming up to my 8 month mark) and I was quite worried when I woke because for the first time inside the dream, I didn't feel guilty or bad in any other way for having picked up that fag.

    I do think it's a good way to keep yourself on your toes, though, and remind yourself that while there are lots of reasons not to smoke, there isn't a single good one to start again.

    Keep strong!

    I smoked my last cigarette 8 Months, 4 Days, 8 hours and 52 minutes ago. I have £2,050.69 that I haven't spent on 8,727 cigarettes and saved 4 Weeks, 2 Days, 7 hours and 15 minutes of my life.

  • I have also been dreaming about smoking in the past week or so but I cannot recall ever dreaming about it while I was a smoker!

    I'm quite pleased though that both times I realised that I didn't smoke anymore and got really annoyed with myself in the dream! Obviously, I was also really relieved to wake up and be able to laugh about it!

    I've also noticed the smell thing recently as well. I got in the lift at work the other day and it was clear the other person in there had just been out for a smoke. The smell made me heave as did the realisation that I must have smelt like that and had that effect on people a few weeks ago-ugh!

    Keep it up Lisa-you're doing really well and will be counting in months soon.

  • It's the smell of smoke on others that seems to be worse than anything at the moment! Certainly warns me off of smoking and thinking that I use to smell like that too, errrrrrrr!!:eek:

    Well done Lisa!

  • I'm glad you feel better, and normality is a big step for a quitter!

    Sorry, but yes you are - you always will be. One puff and you will be almost definate (something like 95% certain) to return to smoking full time within a few days.

    There is none.

    Congratulations though, but you need to learn the 1st rule of addiction.

    "administration of a substance to a person addicted to that substance, no matter how long it's been since that person stopped using that substance, will result in re-establishment of that person's dependence on that substance".

    Harsh, but true. Everyone of us, as ex-smokers, has to live with that knowledge forever.

    I don't wish to rain on your parade, you really are doing brilliantly - but there's a long road ahead and we all want to see you succeed :D

    Being an addict is not the end of the world as long as you accept it. By accepting it and promising never to feed the addiction, being an addict doesn't matter at all!

    Sorry Stuart, but I have to disagree; there is no "long road ahead". It really all is in the mind once the withdrawal is passed through. I am what I am right now. Regardless of whether I am a nicotine addict or not (which really is a label and is now in the past) it has absolutely no bearing whatsoever on my life as it is now. As far as I am concerned I am not addicted to nicotine and have not touched the stuff for over three weeks.

    I can go around saying I will be an addict for the rest of my life but why bother when I have absolutely no wish to ever smoke again, it is entirely irrelevant.

    As a Buddhist, and someone who regularly meditates, I certainly feel that this has helped me with the physical withdrawal and has helped me to be able to sit with it mindfully without pushing it away. It has helped me with the psychological dependence (which is much greater than the actual physical) and it is also sustaining my positive mental attitude (that really can be the crux of success when quitting smoking). Without this mental attitude I would still be someone who had “given up” smoking and I would be unhappy and worried that I would always miss cigarettes.

    I really do take the position that we are, whatever we say we are, and, whatever we think we are, we are!. If we go around saying we will always be addicts, we have to be careful and we will never really be free and that we will have such a long and difficult road ahead then some of us will likely think that quitting smoking is much more difficult than it is in actual reality. Whereas if we actually just think how great life is without cigarettes and just forget about them then why worry about the definition of what an addict is for that is all it is, a word.

    As far as I am concerned, now that the withdrawal is over, the "habit" is dead and I understand how smoking is such a complete and utter waste of time, I can now get on with my life without worrying about how hard this all is or otherwise. It simply has no place in my life any longer.

    This may sound arrogant and I certainly do not intend it to be but if I had know three weeks ago that I could get to other side to feel like this so quickly, I would have quit a long time ago.

    The major issue for me that put me off trying to give up smoking was the fact that I was actually brainwashed into thinking that quitting smoking would be too difficult, that I would even be tied to it after giving up and I would always long for just that one, special cigarette.

    I am not denying that on occasion, I would like “one” cigarette, a special one, but I know that this special cigarette does not exist – it is all in my head! This is not a problem either - I presume it is perfectly normal to think about smoking every now and then when one has smoked for a couple of decades! But, it is only an automatic thought triggered by some feeling or place or event so it works just to recognise that it was a trigger and let it go.

    I do not wish to play down the last three weeks, and I would not like to go through that again, not for myself and not for anyone else that has stopped smoking or who is in the process of contemplating stopping but it will only ever be as bad as we make it and, when the three or four weeks are done, and we look back over it, it wasn’t quite as terrible and we thought it was at the time????

  • I am not going to argue with you, your state of mind is obviously what has carried you this far (as has mine, and most other people's on here). State of mind is the single most important thing in quitting. (I also hate the phrase "giving up smoking"... it sounds like you are stopping something you want to do).

    I think you are also right that now physical withdrawal is over that the addiction is beaten. I beleive it is.

    Beaten it may be, gone it is not. It would only take a single puff to re-awaken it.

    Personally, I need to keep that thought in my head for a while longer to make sure that I don't slip. If you need to dismiss it, then that's up to you... it's your quit and I wish you all the best. As long as you don't go back to smoking, whatever you do is right.

    Like I said, you're doing great... and everyone here wants it to stay that way.

    I hope I explained that properly - I re read it, and it seems OK... but sometimes I have trouble getting my point of view across, or it seems harsh when it wasn't meant to be...

    You ARE doing great.

  • Lisa,

    Great fortitude, I know that many people draw great strength from meditation and the teachings of Buddha. I feel glad for you that you can see this as a how it is many/most of us find it to be a much longer process.

    Best wishes

    Nic

  • Thanks guys for your kind words of support.

    It is strange isn't it???? I mean, three weeks ago I was smoking (thinking very hard about what I was doing but still smoking) and now the smell is enough to make me feel sick! Even the thought of putting a smoking stick into mouth fills me with horror but I appreciate what you have said.

    I do know that I am not like someone who has never smoked - I know that if I were to practice smoking again then it would only take one and I would be back in the habit! So, there is no way I will ever go there but luckily for me, there is no temptation to as there are too many plus's now.

    This morning for instance, I had to put all the recycling bins outside for collection and there are four of them which means up and down the steps eight times and the bins are quite heavy. The last time I did this, (still smoking) I had to take my inhalor first then after I had finished, I must say I was slightly out of breath.......but this morning! No inhalor and I raced up and down and couldn't believe how physically strong I felt, and at 6am in the morning as well. It is changes like this that make me realise how lucky I am to have escaped.

    I feel really sorry for all my pals at work, stood outside today, in the rain, and smoking (the company will not provide a shelter for smokers).

    Thanks again for your support and I know I do need to remember that pride comes before a fall and who knows what is around the corner!

    Cheers, Lisa :D

  • Lisa Oscar...you have my congratulations and envy...long may this continue...so glad you are on the 4th weekend.... just remeber..never to have a cigarette again...thats all.. its eveil, nasty, addictive and dangerous... statistcally speaking...you would be better off taking heroin...

    Hey..well done..keep going....

  • Lisa Oscar...you have my congratulations and envy...long may this continue...so glad you are on the 4th weekend.... just remeber..never to have a cigarette again...thats all.. its eveil, nasty, addictive and dangerous... statistcally speaking...you would be better off taking heroin...

    Hey..well done..keep going....

    Thanks!

    I am so pleased today - I went outside amongst the smokers (work). It is a beautiful sunny day and I wanted a break from my office/desk.

    I am so pleased because the smell of the cigarette smoke made me feel sick and I actually coughed.

    I sat beside a colleague who is "trying to give up". She is doing really well and hasn't smoked for two months but she still misses it!!!!

    "Doesn't it smell nice"? She said.

    "No, it stinks"! I answered.

    "Don't you like it then?" She asked

    "No", I replied. "How can anyone like that smell? I am going in, I can't breathe here".

    I can't believe she likes that smell.

    I can't believe I used to like that smell and now I hate it!!!!

    When I looked at my fellow workers, sticking these burning nicotine sticks in their mouths and having to do that every hour, I just really feel such pity for them because they still think they get some genuine pleasure from smoking and they don't even realise they have a drug addiction.

    So, I am so happy that I actually hate the smell of smoking and the thought of smoking begs the question - what on earth for???? I feel really good that it has finally sunk in and I no longer miss it and I have totally "got it".

    I feel free!

    This is certainly the best I have felt since stopping and come to think of it, the best physical shape I have been in since school!!!

    I needed to go downstairs into our warehouse today to collect a box/delivery.

    It was quite heavy but I thought it would be good exercise to collect it and bring it back upstairs myself.......I ran up that flight of stairs and I wasn't even out of breath when I go to the top, I felt so much more physically stronger.

    It really is amazing - smoking must have really aggravated me in ways I was not really conscious of (or chose to ignore).

    Hey, who knows what tomorrow will bring but bring it on I say!

    Hope all you guys are doing really well too!

  • The difference between you and your friend who is trying to give up is the same as me 1 year ago and me today.

    1 year ago I was "trying to give up" on patches. I lasted 10 days, and hated every second of it. I was relieved to fail, relieved to start poisoning myself again.

    Today I am "quitting" (I don't quite consider myself "quit" yet). I am loving every second of it. I am happy, healthy, and repulsed by smoke. I cannot even imagine failing, I will succeed.

    The difference is simple - education. I know why I used to smoke, I know why I want to stop and I know that it does nothing for me. If the NHS offered the advice this forum does, I would probably have been stopped 10 years ago. Oh well, just look forward - better now than never.

    I am doing great - thanks for asking, about as well as you by the sound of it.

    Well done.

  • Yep, your friend is a smoker that is not smoking at present while you are a non smoker.

    The difference is a state of mind:), you have it she does not :(

    Have you spoken to her about how you have quit and that for you stopping smoking isn't a sacrifice?

  • Yep, your friend is a smoker that is not smoking at present while you are a non smoker.

    The difference is a state of mind:), you have it she does not :(

    Have you spoken to her about how you have quit and that for you stopping smoking isn't a sacrifice?

    Yes, I have asked her and I have tried to explain the "psychology" behind smoking and why we think we enjoy cigarettes when we don't in reality.

    Unfortunately, I don't think the time is right for her and she doesn't seem interested......or doesn't get it it.

    There is another girl here who wants to stop smoking and I have lent her my books to read (education) and I have asked her if she has read the books or looked at them yet and she sounds like me only a few weeks ago - I haven't had time, this is a bad time for me to give up, I don't think I can do it...etc.etc.

    It all sounds very familiar and she is only 25 years old and I remember at 24 saying I wanted to stop smoking by the time I was 25.......roll the clock forward 12 years and I finally stopped dodging the issue and got there.

    Sometimes, I think much of the battle is actually getting to the point where you openly acknowledge you want to stop, need to stop and that you may be able to do it (confidence) then start to look at how you that can be done (without then putting it to the back of our minds and forgetting about it - self sabotage).

    I know with me, I kept thinking about it over a period of a year with varied interest but in the end I couldn't fool myself any longer because I knew it just HAD to be done and even though I didn't want to stop, I knew it was in my best interests to stop and you can't keep ignoring that message forever can you?

  • Quick question

    I am someone who is also stongly interested in buddhism, I also like my yoga and things like that. I would smoke before meditaton classes and smoke straight after yoga, I would eat only organic foods or even go on fasts and still smoke:eek:

    Were you as terrible as I was!? How did you used to justify smoking within the context of your spiritual values? Do you find it easier to meditate now that you have quit?

    Only asking as i have found smoking for me was such a huge spiritual block and now that I have quit I am much more able to follow through on all my spiritual ideals, and meditaion is alot deeper and alot easiere interesting to see if it has had a similar effect on you.

    x

    sachmo

  • Hi and how nice to meet a fellow Buddhist!

    How did you used to justify smoking within the context of your spiritual values?

    Well, that was the whole problem really.....I couldn't. The more involved I became in a more "spiritual" life, the more I knew I could not really carry on smoking as I was being hypocritical. I wanted to be more active in looking after my physical health (in order to assist my mental health) so I started to look at my diet, exercise etc. but it always came back to smoking.

    As someone who is also recovering from panic disorder, I also wanted to give myself the best chance of recovery by looking after myself....and again......smoking didn't fit with this plan.

    With Buddhist practice comes self responsibility and awareness and once you become aware of your thoughts, attitudes and values and start to value life, you find you can no longer continue to lie to yourself and carry on hurting yourself in this way.

    I have only been practicing for a year but I have taken the five precepts and one of those is to do our best to abstain from "poisons" which can be over indulgence in alcohol, gossipy magazines, drugs.....and of course cigarettes!

    I am interested to hear your comments on how your meditation has improved and I am hoping I will experience a similar effect.

    At the moment, the meditation is all over the place and I have all but lost any concentration I had managed to build up but I am sure it will come back in the fullness of time.

    I do feel physically different without nicotine so I am expecting some changes once things settle in a little.

    This still feels all very new but it also feels very positive and like you, I think this is yet another step on the spiritual ladder.

    Thanks for your comments!

  • Crazy isn't it

    On absolutly no level does it serve you and yet while you are in that mindset you will find any exscuse to justify it, I reall believe that I jumped stages ahead and that giving up smoking has lead to a domino effect of development, especially meditaion however, of course I no longer crave ciggarettes mid-mediation, or light one up as soon as i have finished, my breathing has improved so pranayama is more effective and intense and I genuinly feel more connected when meditatted maybe it is to do with having less toxins floating around, or maybe it is a karmic payoff for having given up a vice! Either way it's all about the perks, I am still a new quitter (comming up to 3 monhs) so it is great to have a new incentive to keep going, as it stands I couldn't dream of going back to it, it would seem a giant step back in conciousness that frankly I have worked hard to attain.

    xx

    sachmo

  • hi lisa...you are doing great..just do one thing....just keep the faith,..you wount go wrong all the best ...tonyx

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