I had my first cigarette when I was 12 because it was cool. I started smoking because of stress and teenage idiocy. Every time I tried to quit, something in my life would happen to send my attempt crumbling under stress again. It became an outlet for my frustration in the worst times, and habit of feeling something familiar.

When I was 18 my Grandpa passed away. He smoked all his life. He had strokes before when I was younger but I thought nothing of it. He suffered a seizure, followed later in the ambulance by a heart attack. He lived on life support in the hospital only long enough to say goodbye to everyone as they made their way in from hours away.

I will never forget the look on my mother's face that day, and I never want to make anyone feel that my life was lost over something so avoidable. And I never want to have to feel that way about a loved one again - which is why my other half and I are quitting together. Support and confidence are the most imperative, never be without them!

– –
Red Deer