So it’s been a little over 10 months since I (and my husband) quit smoking. I honestly don’t really think about it that much anymore and when I do it’s usually after I have watched a TV show or movie or read a book where people are smoking a lot. I have also had a few dreams where I am smoking, but lately when I have that dream, I’m not enjoying smoking, I’m really upset that I had a cigarette.
Some of my friends still currently smoke, which made it harder in the beginning to be around it every week, but now it has the opposite effect. Sometimes when I’m at stores, people will walk by and the smell is so potent that it makes my eyes water or makes me sneeze. I never realized how bad smokers actually smelled until I quit. I also find that I now notice how many people smoke and it’s actually quite a disturbing amount. When I am driving, I swear every other car someone has their hand out the window with a cigarette. This amazes me because I really never noticed it when I was a smoker; I actually felt like not a lot of people smoked. I also have noticed many other things that bother me, especially people smoking in cars with empty car seats/booster seats in the back or dogs in the car. If you read my previous post about third hand smoke or have done any research on your own, you will know that smoking in your house or car even when your child or pet isn’t there, exposes them to third hand smoke and potential health problems. And forcing your dog to inhale your second hand smoke can lead to respiratory problems, irritation to their eyes, ears and skin and even cancer. The animals I can sort of understand, I guess, but I can not understand smoking ANYWHERE that might expose your children to second or third hand smoke.
My friends never thought I would quit smoking because out of all of us, I seemed to love smoking the most. And by that, they mean I smoked more and for many, many years had no desire to quit. Now that I have quit, I realize what a burden that addiction was. I feel bad for people who are now standing outside shivering in the Michigan winter to get their nicotine fix rather than just breaking the addiction. I’m not trying to dismiss how hard it is to break this addiction. I quit 4-5 times before I actually, finally became a non-smoker. It was really hard, it caused my depression to flare badly for about a month, along with many other things such as exhaustion. But in the long run, of course it was worth it. I would never smoke if I was trying to get pregnant, or even thinking about trying. I would never smoke when I was pregnant. And most importantly, I would never, ever smoke when I had children. And I would not allow my husband to smoke in any of these situations as well. That’s why I decided to quit when I did because if I hadn’t done it then, when would I? That’s the other thing I don’t understand; allowing your spouse to smoke if you have children or your wife is pregnant. Makes me want to yell at people and ask them why they have no self control and why they are so selfish. Sometimes even though things are difficult, you do them for the benefit of the people you love.
I could write all day about how absurd smoking is, now from the perspective of a non-smoker. And on the days when I first quit and was having a hard time, I just focused on why I decided to quit in the first place; to improve my chronic health problems, for my husband and for my future children. That should be all the motivation anyone needs. And my therapist was also a great resource to talk to before and after quitting as well as reading some books on the subject and bog posts. I promise, if I can do it, you can do it!