Yes you heard it right folks. I’m one of those people with the nasty habit of puffing away on a cigarette, every time I’m stressed/bored/anxious/drinking/[insert anything here]. It’s not a habit I’m proud of and until now, quitting hasn’t really been on my agenda. More important things like getting up in the morning and getting through the day, have taken precedence. Don’t worry, the irony of that sentence isn’t lost on me.
In my defence, I would like to say that I’ve been really good. Throughout both of my pregnancies I completely quit smoking. Something about subjecting my unborn children to that crazy addictive substance called nicotine, made me squirm uncontrollably. It just didn’t sit right with me and so that is what kept me going through both occasions.
Now though it seems I’ve come to a crossroads. I quit now, while I’m young and look forward to the benefits of a life without those little white sticks, or carry on the way I’m going and potentially live a short life, where I don’t get to see my children grow up.
In reality it’s not as cut and dry as this, I really wish it was because I would have dumped the things a very long time ago. So many emotions, reasons, habits and lifestyle choices, factor in to a decision to smoke or not – which added to the addiction – makes for a very convincing argument not to.
What has tipped me over the edge though is my mother. Come Christmas day this year, it will be two years since she lost her battle with Cancer. Of course no-one knows whether her lifelong smoking addiction had any effect on her passing, but it still strikes a cord with me. My mother was only in her 50s when she died – she didn’t even get to meet the twins and the granddaughter she’d always dreamed of. To go so young, with so much life ahead of her was tragic and it’s something that I don’t want to go through myself.
I feel like I owe it to my mother, my children, my partner and most importantly – myself – to quit this awful habit. I want to be there as my children grow up – to celebrate their achievements, comfort them when they need me and encourage them in their pursuits as adults. The cold, hard fact is I can’t do that if I’m dead.
Sure, I could get knocked over by a bus tomorrow or spontaneously combust or something. Those things are pretty hard to avoid but smoking is something I can have some control over. So this month I’m joining the government’s Stoptober Campaign, helped along with some advice and help from the Boots stop smoking service. I’m going to be blogging my journey each week for the whole of October, with the aim of being completely smoke free by the months end.
I know it’s not going to be easy, nothing that’s good for you ever is, is it? But I’ve made my peace with those sticks of woe and am up for a life free of them, once and for all.
Are you joining in with Stoptober? Maybe you’ve already quit – if so what advice would you give to someone who is breaking the habit?