(Carolyn's Story) Lucky 13 years! But my quit did not happen by luck!

Lucky 13 years! But my quit did not happen by luck!

Wow – here I am at 13 years quit – not since I was a child have I been quit this long as I started smoking at age 12. I debated writing a ramble this year because I thought what else can I write so I asked DH for suggestions and he said for me to teach, tell people what can happen if they do not quit. I will try not to be preachy, but still keep it real. When I quit 13 years ago it had to be after almost a year of the doctor nagging me before the heart attack, I might not live to quit after. I could not breathe when I walked any distance or at a fast pace. I could not climb a flight of stairs or walk up a hill without using an inhaler. I still remember the summer I had pneumonia. I smoked less but still smoked. I remember having to go into the hospital to have a breathing treatment because I had the beginning of COPD. I thought it was Asthma; I walked out of the hospital and had a smoke, how crazy was I. Not crazy, addicted and my drug was impacting my ability to breathe and let’s be honest if you can’t breath you can’t live let alone do activities that you enjoy that require movement. Quitting was not easy. Messed with my depression, impacted my sleep but with this final quit, I finally quit playing with quitting and got down to it. I would quit for hours, days, weeks on previous attempts and make an excuse to smoke. Still unable to breathe well, but kept coming up with the excuses to smoke. There is never a reason to smoke folks. Addiction is lying to you, as I say you have to get past the smoke screen to see the lies of addiction. We cannot romance the smoke; the smoke has never given us anything. It tries to take credit for all you do for yourself. You do not love smoking, you love the relief you feel when you smoke and I have to keep it real. Smoking causes smoking. You crave because you smoked not because you quit, period. As many know, my DH lost his right leg due to a diabetic related infection. I am proud to say that not once during this time have I thought of smoking. Thankfully, he has never smoked because if he did the problems, he has would be so much worse. While he was in the hospital, I overheard a doctor speaking to a patient. He was telling them if they kept smoking, they were likely to lose a leg. It was just another thing in the long list of what smoking gives us, none of it good. Asthma, COPD, cancer, stroke, heart attacks, artery problems and I am sure many other things as well as poor to no quality of life. I would not want to be out hiking with an oxygen tank attached to me. I want to be honest. I do not think I would be alive today if I had not quit smoking 13 years ago. We suffer; I suffered when quitting because we smoked not because we quit. We were not born with a sickerette in our mouths and it is addiction that makes it hard to quit. I can walk upstairs, I can walk for miles up and down hills hiking. I can exercise and even when sick, I seldom require an inhaler anymore. Quitting is not easy – I admit that – but I do not imagine dying is either and for most of us smoking is a death sentence. The price of us dying is paid not only by us, but also those we love, as they will have to watch us die. Join me on the Freedom Road. Life is not perfect there but it is so much better then being tied to a sickerette that is killing us. Quitting is doable. We can all quit! Shout out a big HELL NO to smoking today and get it done. You will in time, be happy you did. Loud and proud at 13 years Cara D4748

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(Carolyn's Story) Lucky 13 years! But my quit did not happen by luck!