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Fight depression


2021-07-25 7:17 PM

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Managing urges to drink while quitting smoking


2021-07-03 2:22 PM

Managing Drinking Community

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9 years ago 0 Magpie 7 logo logo logo logo logo logo logo logo logo logo 0
Might Be Too Little, Too Late...

Hello. I'm 48, have been smoking for most of my life. (Either inhaling all that second hand smoke that I so loved as a child or lighting it up myself.) I did manage to stop smoking for three days five years ago when I did a program and joined a forum. I'm going to be trying again, and part  of doing my homework and being sincere in my efforts is to introduce myself and ask for some opinions and advice.
Stopping smoking now won't change all the past losses, won't negate the effect of having stewed in smoke for so many years, but a prepared and determined quit will free up my time (no more distracted worry about how many smokes I have left, or if I can get out of watching a movie because I can't go more than an hour without a smoke in the evening...etc!) and allow me to put the money to better use. Like getting that mammogram I always haven't wanted. (Sorry - bit of bird humor there.) 
I'm not afraid of gaining some weight - frankly, I come from a long line of Mack truck people and if I gain a few pounds that's not going to be the end. I know I can exercise and lose it. I don't have a lot of energy or breath these days so I'm thin and in bad shape. Somehow being a bit chunky and being able to breathe and retain a normal coloring after going up a flight of steps seems a worthier goal at this point.
I looked around at some forums and I really liked this one. I dearly love the kindness and compassion I've seen members showing one another, and the positive encouragement. There seems to be a lot of earnest hearts here, and that I find is a wonderful thing.
And boy am I scared. I can't fail this time. I really have to quit. I've been coughing so badly that I wake up and get close to vomiting. That's an embarrassing thing to admit. Horribly embarrassing. A dear friend of mine had a heart attack on Halloween. I flew up to stay with her when she got out of the hospital. She was still smoking, smoking indoors and smoking cloves, all of which nearly did me in. I developed the cough while I was there and even though she quit smoking about four days after I got there, (Yay!) I still couldn't stop coughing. I have no medical insurance and live in the U.S. so if I get sick I might as well be dead. That's sort of the way it is here. 
Sorry if this is kind of loud but I guess that's what a Magpie is. I appreciate those people who don't mind taking the time to read this and to tell me what positive things you did to keep yourself from going back to smoking. 
9 years ago 0 Magpie 7 logo logo logo logo logo logo logo logo logo logo 0
Might Be Too Little, Too Late...

Thank you Luna and Vincenza for responding. I really appreciate it!

"Recognize the addiction for what it is and don't get sentimental about it."
I think that is so valuable to me Luna. It's a stinky cigarette with a chemical that I like. That's about it. I think the anger I've been feeling about this tends to center around the idea that this thing has such a hold on me. I've been beating the (fill-in-the-blank) out of myself not just today but for years over this. It's a non entity, a bad habit and was a terrible choice for me. (And anyone else doing it!) 
I'm trying very hard to think in positive terms....what benefits will come about and how good I'll feel being able to breathe again. I'm cutting down now preparing for Friday (a nice surprise would be if I quit even sooner) and one thing I tend to do is punish thoroughly. I decided that concentrating on rewarding might be a novel approach! So since I kept my smoking down further than I thought I would, I allowed myself a silly pleasure - dancing for the dogs. They are incredibly unrefined and are unimpressed by my masterful  moves, but I know it was good. It felt great anyway! Just until I hit positive purple! I will see if I can get through two songs tomorrow without kakking.
Thanks again for the support Luna, and for reaching out to me. I can't tell you how much it means to me. 
9 years ago 0 Magpie 7 logo logo logo logo logo logo logo logo logo logo 0
Might Be Too Little, Too Late...

Thank you Breather. I do get everything you are saying. I had a woman (in 1989!) come up to me and scream at me "I hope you die of cancer." And I mean scream. All kinds of weird and rude treatment. I think Canadians pay more in taxes than here, but none of it is cheap. 

I did well last night - smoked one cigarette where I would have smoked five, and the whole day was like that. I stayed late in bed this morning because I was terrified that I would smoke first thing. I walked around and did a couple of small things and then ran for that rotten little cylinder! I just kept asking myself what was so great about it. (Sigh....) I had tons of reasons why it wasn't great and only one why it was. And a nicotine patch would have pretty much solved that one reason.
Thanks for writing to me Breather. I really appreciate it. So glad that you and Luna made it! 
9 years ago 0 Magpie 7 logo logo logo logo logo logo logo logo logo logo 0
Might Be Too Little, Too Late...

 I so appreciate what you are saying, Eyja. And Luna really is so lovely! I've re-read what Luna has written quite a few times, and Breather, you really got me on a few things. (Grin!) I like your refreshing frankness! 
I will try to get a copy of the Alan Carr book, Eyja. I've read quite a few references to his work on this board. And you are so right - an addiction is just what it is. I actually don't have any problem saying or writing it. I have such a problem with the fact that it's such a damaging addiction, not just for me but for those around me. I've tried to limit the damage - I've been smoking outside for 12 years, but when I lost my little cat last year due to what was more than likely cancer, I wept for days and days, and still haven't finished. I framed photos of her - she's everywhere around here to remind me of what I lost. I'm convinced my smoking impacted her as well as my husband (who thankfully never smoked) and the other critters that had been in my life.
Thank you again for dropping in to offer your kindness Luna! I meant to say that I decided to treat myself a bit more kindly on this because of what you had written. It's an odd thing, but when I think back on some terrible times in my life and that I made it through okay, I can't seem to apply that to quitting smoking. That I really can do this, and that it certainly won't be even close to the most difficult thing I've ever done. That disgust and anger is so strong. I have hypothyroidism, and drinking just didn't agree with me so when I was 23 I stopped. Didn't even have to think about it. I decided it made me feel bad and although people don't question it if you drink, when you tell them you don't drink it's like waving a red flag in front of a whole bunch of bulls! I was really surprised at the reaction that it got and still gets. (A friend of mine who doesn't drink for the same reason as me told me that her co-workers thought she was a recovering alcoholic! I can't believe that people can't comprehend that maybe some people just don't like it. Sigh.)
But where drinking was not an issue, my oh my is this smoking thing a huge one. This addiction to the actual drug, and the nervous habit of lighting up. I initially wanted to do this cold turkey, but I'm thinking I may need to break that hand to mouth habit first. I did manage three days with the patch so I'm going out tomorrow to get some. Better to have it. I don't want to hear any excuses from me!!!
One thing is really unnerving me. The  time I managed to stop for three days was about six years ago. There had been a terrible tragedy in my family in the late winter/early spring of that year, and it was late summer that I did the program and put the patch on. On the third night, I had some very disturbing communication from a family member about the tragedy, and then at 2 in the morning, one of my dogs suffered a terrible stroke. I won't describe what it was like, but I can say that it was unbelievably horrifying. We had to rush him to the emergency vet, and I had to coach the obviously new and very nervous young vet through euthanizing my dog. He was shaking badly. There was an all night liquor store on the way home. I stopped and bought a pack and killed my quit.
The reason I bring that up is because my two dogs are very old. One is having serious medical issues and I know that she and her buddy might not be around for long. I've been married for 26 years, no kids, loads of lovely nephews, nieces and a great nephew as well as friends that have their children. But I'm usually here working at home and spend a lot of time around the dogs. I am very close to them. I'm so stupidly afraid of going through a different version of that hideous night all over again, and losing one more good thing (my quit) on top of the loss of a good friend. I know realistically that there are no guarantees about those things beyond our control, but I realize the biggest problem is my anxiety and verge on panic feelings. I've been swamped with them all day. I did well last night with the cutting down - I smoked four less cigarettes than I thought I would, but when I tried to put off having that critical early morning first smoke I actually started shaking. (Here the anger at myself comes in.) It was a failure to me even though I am working towards what I want and on the whole not doing badly. At least I see where I'm at my weakest. Phew. Sorry about that. I feel like I'm all over the road with this!!!
Okay, I'm going wrap this up and go lay down and have a really long and hearty cry! Thanks for touching my heart so deeply with your kindness you guys. 
9 years ago 0 Magpie 7 logo logo logo logo logo logo logo logo logo logo 0
Might Be Too Little, Too Late...

Sorry for the whine you guys! IT's been a rough day and  I feel so bad physically. Then I remembered that I forgot to take my thyroid medication. For three days. 
Think I'll get a reminder tattooed somewhere. Just not on a cigarette case! 
9 years ago 0 Magpie 7 logo logo logo logo logo logo logo logo logo logo 0
Might Be Too Little, Too Late...

Thanks so much, all of you. I'm having a difficult time, but I'm lurking and reading, reading, reading....
9 years ago 0 Magpie 7 logo logo logo logo logo logo logo logo logo logo 0
Might Be Too Little, Too Late...

Thanks Stick. 
That's been a big problem - changing things around so I have, to some degree, a new environment. I knew this was going to be tough because of working on my own. I only smoke in two places at home - on the patio or inside my studio/shed with the door open. The things I have there aren't the type of things that absorb smoke and end up stinky. (With the exception of me.) But I have to put things in there that will end up absorbing smoke - my nephew and his family are coming to stay with us over the Christmas holiday and our house is so tiny that my studio is going to be over loaded. So I really can't smoke in there now.
Bt I did. I really didn't focus on doing the work that needed to be done. The time that I quit for three days wasn't long, but I did a ton of work towards the quit. Every time I had a cigarette, I wrote down the time, and what I felt triggered the need. There were all kinds of things like that that I did. For the last week, I've been running in a frenzy trying to get the jewelry that's all over this house sorted and stored. If I'm going to paint, it has to be inside the house - my studio is unheated and it isn't a good place to paint. My husband doesn't mind if I take over part of the dining room for painting. It's just that right now I probably have over 600 lbs of jewelry in there! I haven't felt well since I went to help my friend that had the heart attack and have been moving so slow since then. The amount of work I have to get done is overwhelming and not something I can put off. Meaning the jewelry and the quit homework.
I spent some time this morning looking around here and in some other forums to see if anyone had written about having a similar problem, and to see if I could come up with a replacement for that morning smoke which is the worst for me. I saw a thread where a woman was writing about how upset she was with people who she spent tons of time on, that  slipped or went back to smoking. I really don't want to be that person. I don't want to waste anyone's time. So I'm trying hard to focus in on a solution to these problems and figuring out whether I can deal with the patch or not. (I forgot to put it on before I went to sleep last night, and then when I put it on about an hour after I had a smoke, I felt really horrible. I may not be able to use the patch which will have to be okay. No gum either - it really burns my mouth.) 

Please know that I so value and appreciate the time each one of you has spent on me. This is like getting a new dress - I'm attached to the old one, worried about ho wthe new one will work, needing to get it altered but I know - I would really love a new dress.