At 12Am Tuesday morning I celebrated three weeks of non-smoking. I am not going to lie to you and say it has been blissful because the only reason I haven’t cut a bitch is because I rarely leave my house and when I do I am never alone. That being said, it isn’t quite as bad as I thought it would be. Oh, before I go further, if you want to know why in the hell I am rambling about the stuff I am rambling about then check out the About page for an explanation, or as much of an explanation as I plan on giving.
So anyway… not smoking has been rough but not that bad. I read “The Easy Way to Stop Smoking” by Allen Carr and it helped a lot. I actually recommend the book to anyone thinking about quitting but I am going to get real about a few things I found wrong with the book here and now. First and foremost, I think Allen Carr is a giant know-it-all blowhard and I don’t like that in a person, especially a person giving me advice on how to do something. Just because he figured out a way to quit smoking that worked for him doesn’t mean that he has any right to pooh-pooh methods that others might try and I think that saying others will fail with those methods is a dangerous, negative, and generally shitty thing to do.
I also felt like his book was one long commercial for his “world-wide” smoking cessation clinics and I found that more than a little annoying. Honestly, I think the guy is an ass but he is an ass with some really great ideas and suggestions so I picked through the information his book presented, filtered out what worked for me and did my best to ignore the complete shit pile that was the rest of the book.
The most valuable thing I took from it is this: Nicotine is a drug, a drug that I am addicted to and I am not craving cigarettes, I am craving nicotine. Cigarettes are just a nicotine delivery mechanism and what I really want when I get that stabby feeling is a fix of nicotine, not a cigarette, and eventually that urge will go away. That is what stuck with me the most from the book and it is what keeps me from giving up. There were other helpful suggestions and ideas but that is what really resonated with me and until I read that part I was ready toss the book out (but not really because it was a library book).
Once I realized I could quit smoking I realized I can take control of a lot of things in my life that I have made me feel powerless over the years. One big thing is my weight. When I got pregnant with my son over 17 years ago (well shit, I guess I got pregnant almost 18 years ago) I weighted about 125-130 pounds. I was tiny! Like inky-dinky! I am not giving exact weights but I will say that due to a very difficult pregnancy and many months of bed rest, I ended up weighting just about twice that after I had my son. I have lost weight since and my weight has fluctuated at different times in my life for different reasons but I have remained overweight for the last 17 years and there is really no excuse anymore (there really never was). I do have some physical limitations to work around but let’s face it, having severe balance issues doesn’t make me put too much food in my face hole.
A few days after I quit smoking my left foot and leg started swelling. I have always gotten a bit puffy in the heat but this was weird, one sided, puffiness and it freaked the shit out of me because I have a background in the medical field and I know what the fuck that sort of thing can mean. Long story short-ish, I got my ass to the doctor and two weeks later I am still having medical tests done. Thankfully I had an ultrasound of my legs right away and a Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT) was ruled out (a fucking clot people!!! It could have been a blood clot!). I still don’t have answers but the swelling is going down and it set off a multitude of questions and tests. As it stands I am waiting on results for tests to see if I have thyroid diseases and I have an echocardiogram of my heart in the morning.
I am not going to get into the details of all the tests being done and why at the moment because most of them will probably come back fine but what I will tell you is that this has all scared the living shit out of me! I am still young and I still have a lot of life left to live but unfortunately I am now old enough that unwise food choices and a sedentary lifestyle are going to start adversely affecting my health in the here and now.
I want to be young and healthy and beautiful forever! Unfortunately it is currently impossible for me to be young forever but I can still be healthy and beautiful and I am not going to be unless I start getting serious about taking care of myself! I truly hope that this process doesn’t make me feel as fucking stabby as quitting smoking has because it is a process that must take place. Telling all of you about this process as it happens will keep me honest and hopefully keep me from cutting anyone.