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Andy's New Years Quit Date

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  1. atp
    atp avatar
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    05 Jan
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    Jan 01 -
    I decided to quit smoking on New Years day. I'm 50 and been smoking for over 30 years. Pack a day last few years. My 19 year old son picked up the habit recently so part of my motivation was to try to get him to quit with me. I quit with determination for the first time.  My son said he was up for it but didn't even try. 
    I've tried to quit a few times over the years, but realize now that I never really was committed to quitting before. This time is different. I spent time reading up on quitting, joined this site (read some really inspiring stories here), am talking it all through with my wife. 
    Crawling the walls with anxiety, stress, restlessness. Need a smoke so badly. 

    Jan 02 -
    First 2 days were really difficult. Went cold turkey and used NRT lozenges and spray. Aside from the withdrawal it is the not having a smoke as part of whatever I'm doing that was hard. Stayed inside mostly. Was afraid to go and take out the garbage since I usually had a smoke when I did that. Plotting to go out and buy a pack, just to have one drag. Thinking about smoking constantly. Wondering how non-smokers can even get by. Restless all the time. Weird feeling in my mouth, thirsty. 

    Jan.03
    Day 3 I woke up and said to myself that I've gone 2 days without a smoke - I can beat this. I am better than my addiction. Spent a lot of time thinking and reading. Smoking is an addiction. Reflected on how the last few months I would light up a smoke and only smoke half of it as it was cold outside. Why? because I needed that nicotine fix. Decided that I was going to cut back on the NRT lozenges. If i'm going to do this I might as well be all in. Threw out the pack of smokes I had stashed away in the garage. Threw out the lighter, outdoor ashtrays (beer cans). Went to a jobsite (I'm a building science consultant) and the smell of stale smoke in my van was both alluring and repulsive. Started to notice the smell of smoke on my jacket as well. By end of day I'm feeling better. Still have my moments with mood swings, restlessness. But dammit I am determined to quit. 

    Jan.04
    Day 4 - Woke up this morning and much to my surprise I am still alive even though I haven't had a smoke in 4 days. Yay! Decided that today I am not going to use any NRT lozenges or spray. I need to let this addiction go!!! Still think about smoking all the time. Almost asked a contractor on site for a smoke. Just the smell of a freshly lit cigarette was enticing me. Need to resist. Why is it so hard? Still feeling uneasy/restless. Think I am getting over the worst of the withdrawal of nicotine. I'm trying to look for positives - did I just walk up the stairs and not feel as winded? I think so. Not coughing as much either? maybe. My wife tells me I smell better. I realize that where I failed previously was that I didn't try to think of being a non-smoker. My wife said I need to get to the point where I identify as a non-smoker. That smoking was a part of who I am/was. It will take time to let that go. Eating lots of snacks. Drinking lots of water. Guess if I gain some weight that is better than the alternatives. 

    Jan 05 - 
    Day 5 dawns and after making a bowl of oatmeal I decide that at 6:30am I need to steam freshen my jackets - off they  go into the dryer. Lysol spray my home office (even though I don't smoke inside the house I spray anyway). Lysol spray inside of my van. And for good measure in the garage. Doing the big cleansing - need to rid myself of the smoking reminders. Still think about having a smoke, but am more determined than ever to resist. One day at a time. 

    It's not been easy so far. 

    What I do realize that this time I really want this. 
  2. brieffree
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    Hi Andy

    you are doing great!

    Relax, you passed 5 day's so far, so you know how to prepare for day 6 and 7, the rest will be much easier.

    Try to regard your self for a good job!
    You deserve to be free!
  3. atp
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    05 Jan in reply to brieffree
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    Thanks for the words of encouragement. I was all excited to have a reply to my post. 

    Spent last half hour or so talking over my quit with my wife. Need to talk it through, and write it out as I'm doing here. Maybe its my way of convincing myself? processing my loss? She is being so helpful. Really she is just letting me talk it through and listening, but that is what i need. 

    Decided that I need to buy a big bag of Nibs. Just something to snack on. My reward for getting this far.

    Went out to the garage with some garbage and I can smell the butts in the empty beer bottles. Off to the beer store soon to get rid of those. Feels good to get rid of the remains of my habit. 

    The truth is - I know that I am not out of the woods yet. 
  4. linda, quit coach
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    Hi Andy,

    You have worked very hard to get to this point, congratulations! You have passed 5 days - It's Awesome! You have such a great awareness about yourself and you’ve done a wonderful job at building on your strengths and skills. Your commitment and strong mindset will definitively help you get through the hard times and conquer this addiction. Keep going strong. You are doing fantastic! You are doing something remarkable and you have accomplished something that is very important for your health and wellbeing.

    With this great mindset and this strong motivation to help your son quit smoking, we believe that you can do this! We really love your positive self-talk and with all these great strategies and tools, you have what it takes to be smoke-free!

    Thank you for sharing your quit journey with us and wishing you continued success!
  5. eagerquit
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    Hi atp,

    Congratulations on 5 days smoke free. Journaling is a great way to mark your progress. You have some great reasons for quitting, both for yourself and to set an example for your son. Your wife is also a great support to you in your progress. Write down your reasons for quitting and put them in places where you often look -- in your home office, on the fridge and in your car. They will remind you of where you are coming from and where you want to go. Some rewards to work for also helped me along the way.

    You are doing great! Keep up the good work.

    Eagerquit
  6. treepeo
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    Hi Andy,

    Congratulations on your first five smoke free days!  I know it's not easy, so good for you!

    I can relate to what you said about not really committing to the quit in the past.  That was me, too.  And then, like you, I decided that I had to get really serious about it, or nothing would change.  That was two years ago and I have been a non-smoker ever since.  And quitting was the best thing I have ever done.

    I am glad to hear that your wife is being so supportive.  It really helps to have people on your side to help you through the process.  Your son  will have to make his own decision, but at least you are setting a good example for him, and showing him that it is possible to quit.

    Keep drinking lots of water, and do things to distract yourself.  And remember N.O.P.E., Not One Puff Ever.  If you stick with that, you will be fine. 
  7. turningpoint
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    Hello Andy,

    Like you, I quit smoking at New Year's.  So far I'm very pleased that I did.  Best wishes to you for success in your quit!

    To all who contribute to making this site so useful, thank you!  You have already been a big help in reinforcing my determination and commitment to quitting smoking.
  8. atp
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    06 Jan in reply to turningpoint
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    Wow - thanks for all the supportive comments! I have been reading through a lot of posts on this site and found many of them useful. 

    To TURNINGPOINT - congrats on quitting to you too. How has your quit been going?

    On Jan.05 took my older son and his friend (they are both special needs) to go see Aquaman (It was a great movie) and afterwards we went to Burgers Priest (burgers are ok). Walking out of the theatre I could smell the smoke just outside the entrance. Same as at the burger place on arrival there was someone having a smoke outside. The smell is so alluring. My wife, who used to smoke occasionally before we had kids, said she still likes the smell of fresh smoke. Much like what TREEPEO wrote above - not one puff ever is becoming my motto. That's where I failed before. Always thinking just one smoke to calm me down won't hurt......wrong!

    Jan.06 - woke up this morning and feeling even better than I have in almost a week. Had a couple glass of water and thinking that I can handle having a coffee, might even take the dog for a walk this afternoon (avoided that this week as I always had a smoke or two on the walk, and yes my wife was walking the dog so he wasn't suffering due to me). 
    Last modified on 06 Jan 2019 07:17 by atp
  9. atp
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    This is now my 7th day of not smoking. That feels like a real accomplishment for me. Never thought I could do this up until now. Told my mom yesterday that i quit and she was very supportive. Was updating a good friend of mine on my quit so far, and he was more joking about weight gain and stuff. Not the support I was expecting from him. It really drives the point of finding a good support team to help in your quit. My wife has been my best support through this. She has put up with me talking non-stop about what I'm feeling and going through. She know when to just listen and when to offer support. 

    The main insight being that previous times I quit I didn't communicate what I was going through, didn't throw out my smokes, lighter, etc, didn't reach out for help. I finally resolved to quit and am more motivated now than on Day 1. 

    In some respects I feel lucky this time as my quit has been easier than expected (withdrawal symptoms were rough but manageable and subsided by day 4). The hard part is getting the mental side. I am motivated to quit this time, but I still have that urge to smoke. Its the routine stuff - coffee/smoke, drive to work/smoke, done eating/smoke. A part of my routine is now gone.

    Starting to understand what a few others have said about it becoming a lifestyle change. Drinking less coffee, cut back on beer, eating more regularly and more fruits. Thinking about getting out for more walks to get in some extra exercise. 

    I am starting to notice that my cough is subsiding, less nasal irritation, starting to actually feel better overall - went up the stairs yesterday and I swear that I didn't feel winded. I'm sure some of it is me trying really hard to find the positives, and some certainly is an improvement. 

    I realize that everyone's quit is different. After several attempts this is the first time I got past the initial withdrawal phase - and now that I'm to the other side, so to speak, it seems so much more attainable. Hang in there all you other recent quitters. 

    Being positive. And looking forward to the next smoke free day!

  10. turningpoint
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    Welcome to day 7 of non-smoking, atp!  Day 7 has dawned for me as well.  I'm happy to hear that your quit has been easier than expected, and that you receive such excellent support from your wife.  As you say, the right support really does make a difference.  I live on my own and almost all of my friends are never-smokers.  And since I've quit and relapsed many times in the past, I'm reluctant to say anything about this most recent attempt.  So this the people who post on this site are my support.

    I write in my journal daily, and something I have found particularly helpful is to record quotes, phrases, from successful quitters on this site such as eagerquit and treepeo.  They lead me to continue on, to believe that it's worth the work and occasional struggle to keep on quitting.  Thank you!

    I wish everyone a happy and successful non-smoking day!

  11. atp
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    Hey turningpoint congrats on making to day 7 as well!!

    Lets just take it one day at a time.

    As much as i feel motivated I know that all i can do is focus on the day in front of me and keep committed to not having a smoke. Sounds like such an easy thing doesn't it? But it can be the hardest thing to do at any given moment. 

    I've never gotten this far into a quit before. I don't even know what it feels like to be a non-smoker. Been smoking for so long. Its almost like we are grieving a departed friend. The problem is, that 'friend' was a real bastard robbing us of our health and money. 

    You know, the important thing is that you are still wanting to quit. I thought some of my friends would be more supportive. Not everyone gets what we are going through trying to quit. 

    So tell me - how have you been feeling since your quit? 
  12. turningpoint
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    Well atp I'm pleased to say that I've been feeling very good since I quit.  Unlike all the other times.  No cravings,, just the occasional fleeting urge, usually first thing in the morning.  One thing I am avoiding altogether is alcohol.  Even one glass of wine has weakened me in the past to the point that I caved.  I'm using the patch - have tried going cold turkey in the past, but just couldn't do it.

    I'm not sure why, but I have never felt nearly this resolved to quit in my previous attempts.  I'm optimistic.  But as you say, one day at a time!
  13. atp
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    Sounds like we are both approaching our quits with a new attitude. This time I'm feeling a lot better as well. 

    Good for you to identify your triggers! It not a bad thing to cut down on the alcohol either. I haven't been to the beer store since Dec.30! I'm still figuring out some of my triggers. Last night I stepped out on the back deck for a breath of fresh air and to put that 'trigger' to rest (for all of the last 7 days I didn't go on the back deck). Can't even tell how many smokes I had back there. Feels good to be taking control of my addiction! 

    Bonus - talking to my younger son today, he's 19. (He was to quit with me on Jan 01, but he didn't. I left it alone, figured he will do it when he's ready, and hopefully him seeing me quit will be an incentive for him). Well he tells me he ended up quitting  on Jan 02!!!! 
  14. turningpoint
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    Great news about your son!
  15. treepeo
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    Hi atp,

    I'm sure you really were less winded going up the stairs.  Sometime during the first month of my quit, I remember hurrying up two flights of stairs and then getting on the streetcar.  I sat down and then it dawned on me.  My heart wasn't beating out of my chest!  Wow, that was such a big deal for me.  For most of my life, any kind of exertion caused me to huff and puff for at least five minutes or so, until I could get it under control.  I used to get so winded that I couldn't even talk.  So the fact that I could do those stairs without that happening was absolutely amazing, and just reinforced to me that quitting was the right decision to make.

    I am so excited for you, atp, and for you too, turningpoint.  You are both going to see so many changes as time goes on.  It's wonderful that you are both so committed.  That determination will help you make it all the way.  You are going to kick this addiction to the curb and start enjoying the freedom that comes with being a non-smoker.
  16. turningpoint
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    Amen.
  17. atp
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    08 Jan in reply to turningpoint
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    Treepeo,

    Thanks for the words of encouragement - Its amazing how a few words here and there from others either going through, or having gone through, the same thing can motivate me. 

    One week into my quit and I am really starting to think that I can do this. The cravings are subsiding. Now I just need to deal with that empty feeling of not smoking. Learning how to do everyday things without stopping for a smoke. 
  18. turningpoint
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    One week in.  Now for week 2!
  19. efreeman75
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    Hi atp and welcome to the forum.

    Already into your second week - that's amazing!  And it sounds like you've got some great support at home, that is invaluable to your success.  Quitting is difficult and often all we need is to talk about what we're feeling and experiencing.  That's also one of the many values of this forum, knowing that you're not alone.

    You also have positive thoughts about quitting and the reasons why.  Attitude is Altitude. 

    We're all here rooting for you.

    E
  20. atp
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    09 Jan in reply to efreeman75
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    Second week being smoke free!!!! I didn't even think this far ahead when I quit. 
    I have to admit that I am really proud of myself for getting this far, and am starting to look at the positives of being a non-smoker (some excellent posts by efreeman, treepoo and others) as my daily motivator and long-term reward. Yes, I'm actually starting to think long-term about my quit!

    The wife and I watched Bird Box on Netflix last night (actually a pretty good movie) and afterwards I let our dog out for his pee prior to our going to bed. As I let him back in again I shuddered at the cold and started to head up to bed and realized that I didn't feel the urge to go out for a smoke as a usually did. 

    It's these small victories that reinforce my will to keep my quit going. 
  21. efreeman75
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    Hi atp - excellent to hear that you're changing your routines to not include smoking.  The urges will come and go - don't let them de-motivate you.  Rather, as you indicate, count them as victories.  Beating an urge can be just a good motivator as not having an urge at all.  The harder the victory, the sweeter the success.

    It can be a daily struggle, but envisioning a future without cigarettes will lead you to that realization of your desired success.

    Welcome to your second week.  We're glad you're here.

    E
  22. atp
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    11 Days now since I had my last cigarette!!!! With each day I am more and more motivated. Starting to see some benefits to not smoking - more energy, breathing better, not rushing out for a smoke, my wife cuddles with me more (I smell better apparently!!!). 

    Gained a few pounds  (5lbs) but hard to say if that it also due in part to overeating during holidays. Just need to cut back a little on some of the junkfood.....

    I know that I now have the willpower over my smoking addiction to stay quit long-term. 

    Still get those moments of wanting a smoke. Last night had a hard time getting to sleep. Still feel the urge to be constantly munching on something. So I know that I still have a way to go before I can say I am a non-smoker. 
    Last modified on 11 Jan 2019 15:53 by atp
  23. jenna lee, quit coach
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    11 Jan in reply to atp
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    atp,

    Way to go!

    Cravings are normal to have, even after quitting so please do not be too hard on yourself for still feeling them. They do get less frequent and less severe as time passes so rest assured, it will get easier. 

    In addition, sleep disturbance is a normal withdrawal symptom, which should also improve soon. So everything you are going through sounds very normal.

    You sound so determined and know what it is going to take for you to feel like a "non-smoker'

    Thanks for the updates.

    Jenna Lee
  24. atp
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    28 Jan in reply to jenna lee, quit coach
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    I'm coming up on 4 weeks since I quit smoking!!! It really does feel like a major achievement. 

    It is interesting to read my early posts and what I went through during withdrawal. A good reminder to myself whenever I have had a craving to not want to give up. 

    Optimism is what is creeping in for me. Feeling better every day. 

    Savings
    $380.16
    Days Smoke-Free
    27
    Cigarettes Not Smoked
    594

    Thanks all for helping me get this far. 
    Last modified on 28 Jan 2019 07:51 by atp
  25. marianne, quit coach
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    Hello atp,

    What an achievement to celebrate soon-  Impressive numbers!  Thank you for sharing. 

    Realizing what you went through to get to where you, makes your success so valuable.  And like you said knowing you never what to go through that again helps you keep focused on maintaining your quit.  

    Look forward to your important day and hope to hear from you about how it is going.  

    Best Wishes,

    Marianne

  26. atp
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    Amazing how in just about 70 days my life and attitude have changed so much because of my decision to quit smoking. I was reading through my early posts and recall my angst at not smoking and how hard I was trying to convince myself to keep my quit going. 

    In a days time I will come up on $1000 saved since quitting! The amount of money I was spending to harm myself....

    Anyhow, to all the other newer non-smokers out there: Stick it out, as the reward for not smoking is so worth it!


  27. treepeo
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    Hi atp,

    Congratulations on your 70 days.  Yippee!  You have come so far, and it's wonderful that you are starting to reap the benefits.  So happy for you!
  28. emily, quit coach
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    Hi atp,

    Congrats on 70 days! So happy to hear how well you are doing and all of the benefits you get to enjoy.

    Thank-you for sharing your journey with us. I'm sure it's inspiring for many.

    Emily
  29. mari_m
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    12 Mar
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    atp, I am so happy for you for your 70 days of non smoking! Bring on the celebration..it is well deserved. Any plans for your reward? Make it a good one. You have worked hard to be where you are now, and its so nice to be able to enjoy the freedom. Keep moving forward one day and one step at a time. and its a great feeling to know we do not have to go through this journey alone! -m
  30. efreeman75
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    13 Mar
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    Hi atp,

    Congrats - you so deserve this!

    You've committed, have the mindset, and a determined willpower that all led you to this success.

    I'm so happy for you.
33 posts, 0 answered