Forums / The day to day / Morning coffee and smoking- day 14

Morning coffee and smoking- day 14

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  1. kit
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    03 Dec 2019
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    Day 28- Coming up to a month. Seems like one day it feels effortless and the next day it feels ok! I am off the patch as of a week ago. I switched to the gum and am still using cinnamon sticks that really seem to help the hand to mouth thing. I now know the HARDEST times for me. In the mornings and on the weekends. I have changed my morning routine - which seems to help- but weekends are SUPER HARD !! I get a feeling of dread when I know the weekend is coming. Used to be the opposite. Been staying in bed for a good part of the weekend- still watching crappy tv and waiting for the weekend to be over. Seems if I stay home on weekends and not go out I feel less desire to smoke. Although I am tired of staying home all weekend- and cant imagine staying home all weekend for the rest of my life! It is EARLY DAYS for me - and honestly feel that whatever works ( in terms of not smoking) at least for the next month- I should continue to do ! Am so glad this forum is here- it keeps me connected to my pledge - being smoke free - and to a community of people that are always here 24/7. GRATEFUL !!!
  2. justfortoday
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    03 Dec 2019 in reply to kit
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    Hello Kit!!

    Look at you go! 28 freakin' days!

    BRAVO!

    Hey, I know how awful it is facing weekends … I remember two weeks into my quit I had booked a vacation and as it approached, I soooooo dreaded it!

    Now that you have some time behind you, I wanted to make a suggestion that might help with getting back to enjoying your weekend. Too much time isolating might in fact be feeding the emotional dependency.

    Something that really helped me on weekends, and holidays was dedicating a certain amount of time on my artwork, and cooking (my amazing husband is the cook in our household). I would make a plan what I wanted to accomplish creatively, and then get it done. During the week I would pick a country (usually one that I wanted to visit one day), and find a recipe that represented that country. On Saturdays, I would go out and purchase everything I needed to make it. I would make sure that whatever I was making was extremely time consuming. I would then spend Sunday preparing the meal.

    I still follow this practice every week. And don't forget, when we learn something new, our brain produces the dopamine that we used to rely on nicotine to do.

    So, my friend, maybe find a couple of things you've always wanted to try and put it into practice.  It really really works!!

    Have a great day, kit!!

  3. atp
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    03 Dec 2019 in reply to kit
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    When I quit, i was so afraid to walk my dog. That was one of my pleasures - walk the dog and have a few smokes along the trail. My wife and son walked the dog for me. 

    Maybe about the 3rd or 4th week I decided to face my trigger and walk the dog. The light bulb moment came to me when I was walking back up from the river valley and got to the top and I wasn't wheezing for air. Wow. I walked the dog, didn't smoke and i could breathe better too!

    Point is you need to face those triggers.

    One of the best ways is to change routines, much like justfortoday suggested. 

    One month is a big deal. Think about how much time you've saved this month not smoking. 
  4. kit
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    Day 30- A month smoke free. I miss it even more now but what feels different is - one day at a time it gets easier to get through the cravings. First couple of weeks felt HORRIBLE- felt like I needed to be wrapped in chains and handcuffs so I wouldnt/couldnt  smoke. Feel like I can slowly remove the chains and feel confident I wont smoke. ITS HARD TO REMOVE SOMETHING FROM MY LIFE THAT HAS ALWAYS BEEN THERE. But it is starting to feel easier to say NO ! This is a good thing ! Have a great smoke free day-Kit
  5. kit
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    Day 30- Yesterday- supposing this means I have quit smoking for one month. Feels like the longest month EVER ! I quit for 8 years - years ago. And I do remember that at around 4 months I really did not think about it that much. And if I had a craving - it was just a few seconds- then forgot about it. I so hope this happens soon or sooner than later. Im  counting  the hours- minutes- chewing a lot of gum- and constantly thinking of smoking! I guess its just- dont smoke and eventually / hopefully I will stop thinking about smoking. Still feel loke I lost my best friend!
    Have a good smoke free day everyone-Thanks for being here- Kit
  6. kit
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    05 Dec 2019 in reply to justfortoday
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    Hi justfortoday- In our house my husband is the cook as well. He likes to cook but I do know he really appreciates when I cook! Great idea ! The weekends for sure are now the hardest ! I changed my morning routine up- still have a coffee but make these crazy foamy coffees -like a latte - and add cinnamon or vanilla etc. Takes a lot of time ( in that time I would have smoke) as well the drive to and from work is almost better not smoking. I used to get into my car and chain smoke all the way home-45 minutes. I would arrive home exhausted-mostly from consuming all those smokes. I arrive home WAY LESS TIRED - this feels great ! This weekend I will try to cook a really  complicated and yummy meal- that takes forever ! Thanks justfor today- great suggestion! Have a great smoke free day!!  -Kit
  7. justfortoday
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    05 Dec 2019 in reply to kit
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    Kit … I have one thing to say to you …

    YOU ARE FANTASTIC!!

    One month in and you are working your quit like crazy! Congratulations!  

    For me, the first month was so hard and I could only focus on getting through the day. And I too felt like I'd lost one of my lifelong friends. Addiction will do that. It will bang you around, try to convince you that life just won't be the same without it and will take over your thoughts at every opportunity. I gave myself time to "mourn" the loss and eventually I realized that I wouldn't let anyone treat me the way smoking did. Demanding when and where to smoke … controlling my day … taking my money … taking my life.

    Even now when I get a craving (and weaning off the patch has triggered a few for sure), I say out loud … "I know you're there, I hear you yelling for me, and it just isn't going to happen so you do what you need to do, and I'm going to do what I need to do!"  It works :)

    I have a question for you, if you don't mind. You mentioned that you quit smoking for eight years. Can you tell me how/why you started again? I'd be interested to know.

    So happy you're going to try the cooking thing. It's a great way to focus on something other than smoking, and the benefits (for everyone) go on and on. 

    Keep going, my friend! Your commitment to this truly helps me keep my commitment to myself.

    Have a great day!!
    Last modified on 05 Dec 2019 13:41 by justfortoday
  8. kit
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    My quit calculator says I made it through one month. Feels like I have not smoked forever -and feels like I have not quit-although I have- one day at a time. Gotta keep remembering its a journey not a marathon. When I looked at my calculator ( which I do every morning) it said this morning-
    'congratulations you made it to a month' my first thought was- its Friday- I should go out tonight and celebrate but then thought - no I cant cause I cant smoke. Realize I have been isolating myself( except for work) in fear of being out in the world-participating where it would be easier to smoke or buy a pack. Think I need to start doing more things ( small steps) and do things I  used enjoy-and not smoke- SMALL STEPS ! Have a good smoke free day all...
    ps- I still focus on how hard it is  or has been to give up smoking instead of all that I am gaining-FREEDOM.....
  9. kit
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    06 Dec 2019 in reply to justfortoday
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    Hi justfortoday-
    Thats a good question - why did I start again after I had quit for a long time.I really thought I had "beat" the addiction. I quit because I was pregnant- after I had my son I had quit for so many months I never thought about it. Then years later I was out and someone offered me ONE- I had just ONE- and bought a pack the very next day.  And within a day or two I was rightI  back to smoking a pack a day.j Thought there is no way after all these years I would start again- BUT I DID ! I guess its true- one is to many and a thousand is never enough. Yikes late for work!!
  10. kit
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    Going into 2nd. month of not smoking. The week days seem less horrible and find my energy is better- as well as my sleep - what a gift-not waking up every couple of hours. Weekends still tough !! The last month I hardly ever left my house/bed during the weekends for multiple reasons.
    Going out on the weekends to much of a temptation to smoke as well as feeling like I would be REALLY BORED going out with people and not smoking ! I pushed myself to get out Sunday and Sunday night and it was really ok. Of the 4 D's I find distraction the best tool ! AS well- I was stunned at how many cigarettes I did not smoke in a month- as well as money saved ! I cant believe how much I was smoking before I quit a month ago. I  cant believe that I was able to walk (even for 5 minutes) when I actually see the amount I was smoking ! 
    Three years and 2 months ago I quit drinking and have not had a sip of alcohol since. After a year I realized I will ALWAYS miss drinking- but it was a different kind of "miss" (if that makes sense. ) I still get cravings to have a drink- but they are fleeting moments with no desire to pick up a drink. I imagine I will always miss  smoking but eventually ( one day at a time) I will feel the same way about smoking. In some ways I will always miss it but will have zero to pick up a smoke. Its such early days but find I am not thinking about it as much but still thinking about it a lot. The more smoke free days I have the more it feels like it would be insane to smoke and have to start the quit all over again. Between this Forum- the gum and my cinnamon sticks it feels a tiny( really tiny) bit easier. THANKS ALL FOR BEING HERE ON THIS FORUM!! Have a good smoke free day! Kit
  11. atp
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    09 Dec 2019 in reply to kit
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    Kit,

    I'm doing the reverse of you. I quit smoking almost a year ago, and now i'm cutting out beer as well. Seems that one healthy lifestyle change leads to many more (I want to lose weight and those 2-3 beers per day add a lot of calories!). 

    I missed smoking at first. Even through the summer and fall there were times where i just felt like the right thing to be doing was to have a smoke - like salmon fishing this fall, standing in the river. I missed having a cigar while casting. But it wasn't a craving. It was missing something i was used to. 

    The value of our quit becomes huge. A month or two into my quit and a few times I seriously thought abut having a smoke - and I decided not to because I didn't want to start over with the withdrawal again. 

    As the months passed I got used to not smoking, you will too. These days, i just feel so much better that I wouldn't want to go back to smoking. 

    BTW - I've not smoked 7524 cigarettes this year! Think about that. it works out to about 627 hours, or 26 days (based on 5 minutes per smoke) of NOT smoking....

  12. kit
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    13 Dec 2019 in reply to justfortoday
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    Day 39- Hard to believe I have not smoked in 39 days. Lately there have been moments where I forget I have quit (one day at a time) and I think I better stop to buy a pack then remember I dont need to! Freedom !  Still using the gum and my cinnamon sticks- but even beginning to forget about carrying those in my purse!  The best is I dont smell like smoke all the time. I can smell smoke on people now - I used to think I really did not smell like smoke- BOY WAS I WRONG!
    BUT THE VERY BEST IS- My anxiety is far less around having a recurrence of breast cancer. One really never knows for sure - but quitting smoking ( one day at a time) has lessened my anxiety - and believe me my anxiety was off the charts- now its just on the charts!  For sure I am snacking more- trying to make them healthy but thats hard - especially around Christmas. Its starting to also help with my self esteem. I used to always feel " less than" everyone else. Thats starting to change- only a little but small steps. And am building a little nest egg of money. Looking at my quit calculator is SO HELPFUL and saw the dentist yesterday who said " my gums look so much better- IT IS A GIFT TO QUIT !! As well this forum is beyond helpful ! Have a great Friday everyone ! Kit
  13. kit
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    Got through the weekend - was not as bad as previous weekend- hoping in general weekends will become easier. The physical with drawl seems to be -for the most part gone. Still using the gum and my cinnamon sticks -which helps al lot. What I am finding difficult is I feel that my smoking covered up a ton of emotional "stuff" that I did not want to have to look at or deal with. Instead of facing these issues (mentally/emotionally) I would pick up a  cigarette and just zone out and smoke. I no longer have that outlet and it feels like all the crap /baggage and REALLY LOW SELF ESTEEM in my life I covered up with smoking - HAS ALL COME TO THE SURFACE!
    For sure an excellent opportunity for growth- but I really feel like I have no idea HOW to deal with it. I do see a therapist- as well attend a 12 step group for years but nothing seems to help. I am mindful that picking up a cigarette will make every thing worse. What really shocks me that since I quit smoking - I have really realized how low my self esteem is. Even though I hold down a good job- have wonderful and supportive friends and attend my therapy once a week as well as my 12 step group-write in a journal etc. all the things I thought would help-are not helping and feel almost worth less since I have stopped smoking. I know its early days- 6 weeks smoke free- my physical health feels way better but my emotional health feels really bad! 

     Have a good day everyone
  14. sarah, quit coach
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    Hello Kit - firstly, a heartfelt congrats on 6 wks smoke-free! 
    And thank you for sharing on this thread some very real and honest reflections about your quit journey.
    Glad to hear you are getting good support around your mental health, both from a health care professional and from a great friends group too. You've made the link btwn what you used to do in the past - pick up a smoke to manage your self-esteem - and why now you want to come up with other strategies now that you are a non-smoker. Its a new identity that might require new strategies. Any ideas? Any hobbies/interests/activities you have always wanted to try? Anything you've done in past quit attempts that have helped? Sometimes it takes more than a few options to figure out what works best for you.
    We are thinking of you and giving you virtual 'pats on the back' for all the hard work you've put into this quit!
    Take care 
    Sarah


  15. atp
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    17 Dec 2019 in reply to kit
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    Kit,

    I felt very much the same way around the 2nd or 3rd month. Really just trying to figure out how to live life being be a non-smoker. The escape hatch of 'going for a smoke' is gone. I used to do the same, just go out and smoke and not really think about the issue at hand. 

    At first it seems kind of scary and odd - mostly because for most of us we spent our entire adult lives as smokers. Then you start to get used to it. Then you start to really appreciate it. 

    Yes, quitting smoking brought about a lot of lifestyle changes. I started to be come more interested in my health, eating better, more willing to start some new exercise programs, More time to do things, and on and on. 

    Here's the thing - You did something amazing. You chose to quit smoking. You persevered and fought through all the addiction and withdrawal. Now you need to do the next amazing thing and learn how to live a smoke free life. You deserve a reward for all this hard work. Shout it from the rooftops. Embrace and share your success. 

    I am really proud of you for how far you have come. I look forward to your posts and following your journey and seeing you succeed. What? you thought it ends with going 6 weeks without a smoke? Heck, you are just starting to work on the new you!

    Welcome to the next phase in your great journey!
  16. justfortoday
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    17 Dec 2019 in reply to kit
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    Hey kit...

    First of all, please know that everything you are going through, you're not doing it alone. You have all of us in your corner, my friend!

    I am so glad you're reaching out and I have so much respect for your honesty. And, I understand exactly where you are on your journey.

    Quitting smoking demands we make massive changes in our lives. As our world transforms from that of someone who smokes to someone who doesn't requires us to make huge inner/emotional changes too.

    Quitting smoking forced me to face parts of myself that belonged to the past... sneaking out for a cigarette at a family event, smoking cigarette butts because I couldn't leave my kids alone in the middle of the night to go buy some ... years ago I even lied during my pregnancies and said I wasn't smoking which was a bucket full of shame.

    Owning the hard parts of who we are also gives us the freedom to choose who we want to become. I truly believe that quitting smoking gives us all the courage we need to take those first scary steps toward being the best version of whi we can be.

    If we can quit smoking, there is no other "hard" we cant handle.

    Kit, you're doing all the right things ... your journaling, your therapy, your 12 step group, your self-reflection all point toward success.

    I'm ridiculously proud of you!

  17. kit
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    Day 43- My craving for cigarettes seems to come and go.Sometimes I REALLY MISS that feeling of inhaling smoke and my chest feels heavy and in some crazy way almost satisfied. Last night I just had to go to sleep after work-I was craving a lot ! Its day 43- and if I was to start smoking again I honestly dont think I have it in me to quit again or gear up for another quit. Still using the gum but even the taste of the gum is starting to make me crave a cigarette. As well as the holidays coming it feels like Im struggling- but know that if I smoke everything will feel worse!
    ONE DAY AT A TIME ! Have a good day everyone ! Kit
  18. justfortoday
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    Hey there, kit.

    43 days! That really is fantastic!

    I was glad to find your post here tonight and I think I understand exactly where you're at.

    I'm three and a half months smoke free and sometimes I just get sick of the constant struggle. Of course some days are worse than others and the season plays a big role I think. This is our first Christmas without smoking, and we have to figure out what that's all about.

    I've been struggling over the past few weeks and I know it's due to several things. Like you, I also know that smoking is truly that last thing I need to do, and I will not allow it to happen.

    And so together, kit, we will dig deep and keep moving forward. Together we will fight the good fight.

    Have a good night.
  19. kit
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    Last day of work before the holidays. A month and a half off cigarettes ! Something that really helps me is the quit calculator - seeing the amount of cigarettes I have not smoked is stunning!
    I cant believe how much I was smoking before I quit. As well as money saved ( enough to buy All my Christmas gifts)  and how much life I have saved from quitting -Thats a gift. I have almost 3 weeks of holiday over Christmas before returning to work. Need to focus on the benefits. As well I seem to be watching far less crappy tv and starting to do more things again besides lying in bed afraid to go out in case I smoke- getting a little easier- one day at a time! 
    Have a good day all... Kit
  20. atp
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    Kit,

    Yes, the quit calculator is amazing. Funny how while we smoked we never wanted to think about the cost in terms of money and health. Good for you to already have realized your savings and used that for Christmas Shopping. 

    There are only so many Hallmark Christmas movies that one person can watch - get out there and enjoy. Every day will get easier from here on in. 
    Last modified on 20 Dec 2019 13:27 by atp
  21. kit
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    Sundays are always hard for me. Today I thought - okay its like 5 weeks and Im getting bored of this no smoking- angry and fed up with it all !! If I chew another piece of gum my teeth feel like they may fall out of my head ! Feel mad that I cant smoke- well I guess I can - but I know I would so regret it... Holidays are stressful- crazy family dynamics emerge and I dont have my cigarettes to lean on. Feeling beyond cranky and frustrated! CRAVING BIG TIME.....
  22. sarah, quit coach
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    OOOOh the holiday family dynamics - can be very interesting & a very tempting time to reach for a smoke as a way to deal with it all. How are ya doing, kit? 
    Sometimes people find they have to shake up their strategies a bit during these more tricky times. The 'go-to' approach to manage a stressful situation does not work all of a sudden. People might refer to a list, or go back in their mind to other methods they've done in past quit attempts to help resist an urge to smoke. 
    kit, you've got 5 wks of no smoking and you can do this! Day by day, step by step. Its ok to miss smoking. 
    Thinking of you,
    Sarah
  23. kit
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    26 Dec 2019 in reply to atp
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    Hi ATP-You hit the nail on the head - MY ESCAPE HATCH is GONE !

    Ugh- last couple weeks I have had really hard cravings- but feel  more emotional then  physical. First few weeks I would look at Smokers and think YIKES- now I look at smokers and feel jealous ! I know in my head how INSANE smoking is- and yet-even after having breast cancer-and more health /dental issues I know all cased by smoking. I have spent A SMALL FORTUNE- to keep my teeth in order. SCARY and ODD are really good words to describe how I feel. I I like how you said- one starts to get used to being a non-smoker -then one appreciates it..

    Now the next phase?   Learn how to live a smoke free life. THAT ALMOST FEELS HARDER then the first couple of weeks. Thanks ATP- FOR YOUR CONSTANT SUPPORT !

    THE NEW ME- Hmmmm.... I like it- who ever is going to emerge!!

    Talk sooner than later- hope you are having a nice winter-break.Your post REALLY HELPED !!!!
  24. kit
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    26 Dec 2019 in reply to sarah, quit coach
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    Hi Sarah-
    Oh yes- the holiday family dynamics- or  HOLIDAY FAMILY DRAMA/S.  Although the funny thing is ( except my son and husband) people are saying things like " oh come on - you have had at least one cigarette - you have not REALLY QUIT " OMG- Thats horrible for them to say. What is really quit ! I want to scream- YES I HAVE !

    Which by the way means- I have REALLY QUIT.....one day at a time.

    I quit drinking cold turkey one night- years ago after work. There is a lot of travelling in my work-
    I realized many years ago - I was beginning to drink a lot when working out of town. So  I REALLY quit and have never looked back ! I have never drank (not a sip) since I quit !
    I realized that I can transfer a lot of tools I learned when quitting something  else= use  same tools with smoking. 

    Almost two months- I feel it would be foolish to smoke -as I am positive as soon as I had a few- I would feel such shame and regret and  sick with anxiety - then start planning out how I will quit- which would end up taking many many months. Whats the point ?  I already have. At this stage in my journey- staying neutral in family dynamics/ dysfunction ( for now at least) is the way to gp- for now.

    Thanks Sarah- Have a REALLY great holiday !
    Last modified on 26 Dec 2019 09:16 by kit
  25. kit
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    26 Dec 2019 in reply to atp
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    Hi Atp-
    Kit here again. Wanted to tell you ( as it made me really  laugh) I have NEVER seen a Hallmark Movie-but worked on them! 
    The issue for me is- it feels SAFE staying in bed ! Even my husband is saying to me - get out of bed !!! 

    I dont really feel like I know how to " BE" in the world and not smoke ! Im honestly afraid ! 
    The times I have I get really mad/angry and cranky.
    Yikes-Kit
    Last modified on 26 Dec 2019 09:59 by kit
  26. kit
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    26 Dec 2019 in reply to justfortoday
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    Hi justfortoday-
    Yes- THE CONSTANT STRUGGLE ! Last night I just wanted to buy smokes-drive around in my car - windows down-blaring The Red Hot Chili Peppers and chain smoke! 
    I dont really even like The Red Hot Chili Peppers... I feel to clear and present and bored !
    I wont smoke- one day at a time-but comin up 2 months- BEYOND HARD...
    YES - WE WILL AND ARE FIGHTING THIS FIGHT TOGETHER.....
    WE GOTTA KEEP GOING... we will be soooo glad we did !
    Kit
  27. kit
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    Day 55- Almost 2 months without a cigarette. Quitting feels a bit like a jigsaw puzzle now. Some days I forget that I was a serious- hard core smoker- I dont even think about it. Other days thats all I can think of 24/7. Like a roller coaster ride. I have to keep holding on to the memories of when I quit for 10 years- I NEVER THOUGHT ABOUT IT  after 8 months to a year.
    If I did - it was a fleeting 3 -5 second thought - then gone! 

    Sadly this holiday our family had some tragic news and a really difficult Christmas. My old thinking kicked in. I may as well smoke as whats happening is  really crappy.
    All I could think of was buying cigarettes and just smoke! But every time I went to buy them I just could not do it. 

    I feel like I dont have another QUIT in me. I feel strongly that if I was to start again after 2 months I would probably keep smoking and not try to quit again . 

    As I  have said so often- why ruin 8 weeks of really hard,,,
  28. kit
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    30 Dec 2019 in reply to atp
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    Hi Atp- Quitting beer? I found quitting drinking really easy. I guess its different for everyone. Wow- thats amazing you could have a beer and not smoke. I did drink a lot of coffee when i quit drinking but honestly after a week it was really easy. The smoking and drinking were so connected for me- it is even easier not to smoke. That is funny- we are doing it the opposite way!
    Two months- for sure feeling like a slog theses last few days. The addicted brain- oh I will smoke then quit after New years- but i have done that cycle so often i know it doesnt work ( for me ) 
    I have spent a lot of time isolating myself when not working or a have to go to function. The world or my world feels so new and weird being a non smoker again. Feel sad and scared! Thanks- I do believe that soon I will be thinking far less about it. Let me know how quitting beer goes. Really after a week I never looked back !   Kit
  29. kit
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    60 Days not smoking ! I guess thats 2 months. Funny how hard it is for me to congratulate myself. It speaks volumes to me of how hard I am on myself ! Smoking was a way that I felt I could pause and smoke and take a break from feeling that I always do for others but not myself. Its profound - I know but it seems so obvious to me. I feel as though I am on a quest or something to figure out what smoking did for me emotionally.
    Happy New Year All !  Kit
  30. efram, quit coach
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    Congratulations Kit! 

    A few weeks back in this thread APT said, "You persevered and fought through all the addiction and withdrawal. Now you need to do the next amazing thing and learn how to live a smoke free life." I feel like this quest that you're now on is another step in the right direction; as you learn more about what smoking did (or didn't do) for you emotionally (so far you've talked about it as a pause, or an "escape hatch"), you can start to also figure out new, healthier ways to cope. 

    Hopefully you can find ways to not be so hard on yourself as well! What are some nice, positive things you could say instead? 

    Thank you for being so honest about your feelings, Kit. 

    Again, congratulations, and best wishes for a smoke-free 2020! 

    Efram
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