Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Two years ago today...

I smoked my last cigarette. I smoked for 30+ years and never thought I'd ever quit. I enjoyed smoking. And yes, I knew all of the adverse things it was doing to me, but I still enjoyed smoking. Then I got rear-ended in Nov 2005. And I had damaged disks at C-3 and C-4. The Neurosurgeon told me had the driver who hit me been going 5-10 MPH faster, I would have been in a wheelchair for the rest of my life. I had the same damaged disks as Christopher Reeve, mine just did not leave me a quadriplegic. It was decided that in order to stabilize the neck, surgery was going to be necessary.And my Neurosurgeon wouldn't touch me until I was smoke free for 6 weeks pre-op and 5 months post-op. He told me if I was smoke free, I would heal 80% faster and would come back to 95% from where I was before the accident. So I decided I'd humor him and quit for the 6 months. But at 6 months and one day, I was going back to smoking! I'd show him!!! Feb 19 was D-day! So I gave the rest of my carton of cigarettes away...I darn sure wasn't throwing them away! I paid good money for them! And I became a straw connoisseur of straws! I found I liked McDonald's straws best of all. I'd gnaw on those poor things all day, every day. But I never cheated. Not once. And I had the surgery and the headaches that I had been having every. single. day. since the accident were gone. Gone! And my neck felt better than it had in 6 months. I didn't creak any more when I'd turn my head. And every day got a little better with the cravings for a cig, and I began to rely less and less on the straws. And pretty soon it was approaching the day when I could smoke again! And I didn't want to. I'd come this far. My lungs felt better. Clearer. I felt like I had more energy. Why would I want to start smoking again?! So I didn't go back. And two years later, I'm still smoke free. And I've still not cheated once. And I still miss it. Every. day. Some days more than others. I miss my first one in the morning and my last one at night the most. But I liken myself to a recovering alcoholic. I will always be a smoker. And I can't have that first one. Because if I do, I'll smoke for the rest of my life.

And I have to give props to John too while I'm talking about quitting! He is now smoke free for four months! He has stepped down to the second stage of the Patch and I think has another week to go on it and will then go to the third stage. Each stage lessens the amout of nicotine goes into your body. I'm so proud of him!!!

4 comments:

Debbie D-P said...

Congratulations to you BOTH. It is hard. From one ex-smoker to another. It is a habit I still have the habit I just choose not to smoke. I quit 15+ years ago and I know I could very easily still be a smoker. Hugs to you both.

Tickle Me Pink said...

Sue, Congratulations!! I'm so proud of you and I don't even really 'know' you except online ;D. This is such an accomplishment for you and now John too! You guys should do something special to celebrate for your wonderful smoke free 2 years and his 4 months :D Smoking really is a difficult thing to give up (know from family not my own experience since I've never smoked). It's wonderful to hear a story like this where you've overcome such a difficult obstacle and in such a cute way too! The straws are too funny, I've never heard of anyone quiting that way before :D Cheers for you girl!!

*hugs*
Marjorie

Liane said...

HOLY COW, two years! Wow, that is amazing. Congratulations to you. That is one fantastic accomplishment.

Kim said...

Good for you and John. Proud of ya's. Think of the money you are saving and you can spend it on scrapbook supplies. :)