So, one of the last chapters in Allen Carr's book is all about that dreaded last cigarette. He tells the smoker to spark up his/her last smoke and take a few drags, then to really think about how it smells, tastes and feels.
Now because I started reading the book after quitting, I wasn't able to follow these instructions (Mr Carr does recommend in the first few pages of the book that those who have already stopped do not join in with this particular exercise, understandably). But it got me thinking about "my last cigarette". The one that encouraged me to make my decision to stop.
I've decided to post my experience here, because the thought of that experience and the time passed since then has made me feel particularly proud.
I'd had the beginnings of a cold for the last couple of days, but had still not admitted it to anyone (my boyfriend/close friends) yet. I knew that I'd be frowned upon for smoking with a sore throat/chest and wanted to prolong the amount of time I could continue for until it was time to put the fags away for a few days (quite sad really).
We went to the pub for our usual Friday night drink and I smoked as normal (6 cigarettes in around 3-4 hours). I had my last cigarette at about 11:30. It was absolutely foul and my throat felt raw
Bearing in mind that I'd had a bit to drink by this time, I got myself rather worked up and had a bit of a cry to the boyfriend. I remember saying something along the lines of "I'm sick of being poorly all the time!" (this was my second bad cold in exactly 2 months) and "Why do I have to want to smoke so much?"
I think I was just frustrated because, whilst I know full well why I stop smoking when poorly, I would still have all the usual cravings etc just like any other smoker. Knowing that I was heading for another 4-5 days of saying no to cigarettes and also feeling like sh** to top it off really got to me.
And I think I was upset with myself, for relying wholly on something that was lowering the effects of my immune system, thus making it more difficult to fight off the damn colds in the first place.
This is such a classic example of the numerous times I would put smoking before my own health, financial state and all the other things that fall below it in the list.
So, in a nut shell: I would rather be ill more often than to stop smoking. I would rather prolong a cold, that would inevitably end up as a hacking cough, than to stop smoking.
I would rather lose my self respect and beat myself up for relying on nictone so much, than to stop smoking.
Well, I think it's safe to say that I am 100% better off now