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Category Archives: Smoking

The evolving story of my goal to not smoke

August 15

I am not labeling between goals anymore, just one post a day to cover them all. Just a small change since all of my goals have been reduced so much, not because they have changed in importance, but because I have reached them and gotten over the hardest parts.

I did not weigh in this morning, this is the first day back from my break, which felt great btw. I spent one day not thinking about any of this, which was great, than the weekend just hanging around feeling sore and lazy from all my back bs that I wish would go away, then Monday and Tuesday sick physically sick from pain and lack of sleep caused by pain, and had to go see my doc to make changes. out of all of it the best part was the comments that she made about me loosing weight and the reaction she had to me not smoking. She got my meds changed and got me back on track with my back pains to not interrupt my live completely, and now I am back to here. Still feeling sick, but its an odd sick, like when you eat too much candy or ice cream, without the candy and ice cream. Cold sweats and headaches, but it has been getting better over the last couple days. Just a little bit more easing in so I don’t get so frustrated and burn myself out at the start is all I need. The break does wonders. I like taking breaks, it’s almost my best motivator for doing anything to start with, the fact that I will get to take a break from it at some point.

Truth is, I was down, felt bad, and had everything kind of catching up to me. I needed the break and now I am ready to start back in. Today I will start walking again, although I am still sick, throwing up and all, I am not going to worry too much about food today, it’s just going to come back up anyway.

 
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Posted by on August 15, 2012 in Goals, Smoking, Weight

 

Quick Smoking Update

At day 37 without a real cigarette, I have yet to break from using an electic cigarette in that time. I think it is about time to stop those too. I had decided to not quit those, but I also had it in mind that I wouldn’t be stuck to them as tightly as real cigarettes. I was more hoping that there would be a point that I would get to where I would use one occasionally, but have found myself using them more constantly. I think the best thing now is to break it completely. Get rid of the nicotine completely and move on to just being. The hardest part about that is the boredom I already feel thinking about it, and I haven’t even started yet.

Even though I have done the hard part and quit smoking, since quitting nicotine isn’t just hard it can be very stressful on your body, I decided to consult my doctor at this point. With me being on this juice diet, with recent changes to meds and vitamins the doc has me on, and with changes in my exercise, I decided it best to ask her. She put me back on Chantix. While this helped me in a past attempt to quit smoking, I never quit using it, but I have decided to use it again. If nothing else, it helps, and that is what I really need. My biggest problem is that the friend that quit smoking with me, is not only not going to quit the ecigs, he has started becoming quite obsessed with the world of vaping, and has even started in on custom batteries and such. He isn’t going to be a lot of help this time around. He has become exactly what I am hoping to avoid and just substituted smoking and a need to obsess over something, with ecigs.

Anyway, I have set my goals based on scheduling and meds. I will start taking the Chantix tomorrow, then on the 17th I will start weaning off the best I can. I know from past experience that just shutting it off one day just doesn’t work with me on these things. Then I am setting my quit date as the 25th. If I go a full day before the 25th, that will become my new quit date. I am not going to do what I did with smoking and junk food and say that I want to run out of what I have first. Fact is, the supplies for vaping are pretty cheap and I just bought some. It would be quite a while before I quit if that is what I did. Also there is the fact that the expense really goes into hardware parts that you really get use to and somewhat attached to. The best thing for me to do is set the date and give everything I have to my friend that will get plenty of use from it.

UPDATE:

I have to update this a little. After I wrote this I realized that I was looking at the wrong dates on my calender. My vacation is the week that I have set to start quitting, and I know that I will not follow through with this if I attempt it that week. So, I am pushing these dates back by a couple of weeks. I will start taking the meds on the 20th, then start reducing on the 27th then my final quit date is September 3rd.

 
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Posted by on August 8, 2012 in Smoking

 

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Day Twenty-Eight

After today these will be in months not days, so you could call this Month One instead. I am going to continue to come back and do monthly updates on how I feel, good and bad, about not smoking, but since I am not smoking and feel I have reached this goal, I will not be doing so many regular updates. It seems that once a month will do for now though.

I am very happy how all of this has turned out. I didn’t think 28 days ago that this will be the result of me trying to quit. Reality is, I really thought that I wouldn’t smoke for about 24 hours, have a cigarette or twenty, go another 24 to 48 hours and maybe get to a point where I reduced the amount I was smoking majorly or gave up on the goal completely with in the original two-week goal. That isn’t what happened. Instead I stuck with it, replaced the cigarettes with ecigs, never had another cigarette, then majorly reduced the ecigs to less than I was expecting the reduction of cigarettes to end up being. I have not only reached my goal for the month, but doubled the reduction goal for next month on the ecigs already.

Right now I can’t think of too much more I can do to make this much better. I feel good, and not freaking out about not smoking. I don’t even freak out about not having the ecigs, even though I do still enjoy having those throughout the day. I am going to just enjoy this goal achievement and not try to put too much on it or explain it to death, just going to enjoy it.

I will beat this into the ground as much as I can and don’t care if anyone gets tired of hearing it. The people who helped make this happen are really the reason that this happened at all. I can pat myself on my back and say how great I did, but I know that there are certain people who were there and made this really happen. If I had just tried to do this alone, I would still be smoking, and enjoying it. I don’t care what you think or who you are, just one person actively supporting you, makes whatever you are doing ten times easier, and I had more than just the one.

Foremost are my boys, Conner and Jason. Not only were they my inspiration for making this happen, they kicked me in the butt until I did it. Conner, my oldest, never let it go. Wouldn’t let me get away with saying I was going to quit one day, but held my feet to the fire and made me stick to that promise. More so then just making me stick to it, Conner took the time to find ways for me to quit and methods that would help me along the way, then even helped in planning what I was going to do, stayed excited about it with me, and even helped set the quit day to make it happen. Then both of my boys stayed on me after that. Not giving me room to breath, much less to screw up. They made sure I wasn’t smoking and making me feel wonderful for it, mostly by telling me everyday how great I was doing and how much they loved that I wasn’t smoking. They were my couches and my inspiration and this wouldn’t have happened without them.

My friend John was a huge help, not only getting excited about me quitting, but quit with me. Switched to the ecigs and went into this full on with me. This was a huge help. Giving me someone to talk to and compare notes and get excited about things with me that was going through the same things I was. This was a big deal that really help. I had a multitude of other friends and family that supported me on this too, but did so by leaving me alone and letting it happen but once in a while giving me their approval and kudos, and reaching out to make sure I was doing ok while quitting. All of which really made a huge difference in making me not even feel like I have a craving at this point. I don’t think I could be where I am without all of these factors, and just wanted to make sure to thank everyone. Everyone that has supported this has made it possible for me to not only quit smoking, but helped me in getting the confidence to continue this goal as well as making others.

The last goals I had set on day fourteen were,

  • Weekly check ins.
  • I will wrap it up on August 9th with a final post on smoking.
  • This goal is to continue to not smoke and try to work on distractions to the cravings I am still having.
  • To continue to use the ecig, but reduce the amount of fluid I am using. It will be a lot harder to judge how much fluid I use since I am changing to filling my own carts in about a week, so I do not have a basis for the criteria yet, but I will soon.
  • Finally, to spend $150 or less on ecigs in the next month and have a plan in one month to reduce that more.

Let’s review these. I have finished the first and am changing it to monthly. Next is this wrap up on the 9th, well I am doing the wrap up now on the 30th of July. I know it is early, but I didn’t see having much more to say. I need longer times apart at this point to have more to say. I have reduced the amount of ecig fluid I am using. I think it is down to about half of what I was using the week I first stopped smoking.

The final one, of reducing the amount I spend on the ecigs to $150, we need to look back in my records which shows that I was spending an average of $300 a month on cigarettes. Then during the transition to ecigs I spend over $200 a month on those, but those cost cancelled out a large amount of the cigarette costs they were replacing, but still came to around $350 a month when added together. Money was a big motivating factor in quitting, so I am including it as a big part of my goals. The goal I set was in order to force myself to not just replace the cigarettes with something that I was going to be just as addicted to and was going to spend just as much money on. I still want to reduce that amount to a point that I find reasonable, both in cost and use, before I am happy with it. This could mean that it does eventually go away.

So I had set the goal for July at $150. A look at my records for July shows that I spent, drumroll would go here, $118.85 in the month of July. With only two days left in the month, and I don’t need any more supplies of any kind. furthermore, a closer look tells me I can reduce that amount even more. I am going to go as far as saying that I can do better in august then I did in July by over a third. I am setting my only new goal for the next month with this. Next month I have to goals in one. I am setting my official goal that I will not spend more than $100 on ecig supplies of any kind in total, but I am going to be trying for the sub goal of not spending more than $75. I don’t know if I can do the $75 goal yet or not, but I am going to try. I will have updates on that next month.

 
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Posted by on July 30, 2012 in Smoking

 

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Day Twenty-One

WOW!

That is my feelings wrapped up in full on this. I am at twenty one day’s without a cigarette, how amazing is that?

I have gotten to the point where I am kind of leveling off on how I feel about having one. What I mean isn’t that I don’t want one, but I have started feeling that I do want one at times, and this is really brought on by seeing others smoke or being around a smoker, but at the same time knowing that I am better off not smoking one. It’s really an odd feeling for me. For the most part I don’t really think about it much on my own though.

The worst part of all of this really started over the last couple weeks, for me, the smell. I knew that there was some loss of smell with not smoking and that you got a good amount of that back when you quit, but my god. I didn’t realize how much of a loss it really was. When it comes to smoking itself more so than anything. A smoker kind of stops smelling smoke for the most part. Not that they can’t smell it at all, but unless you are smoking in a closed box, its very faint for most people. Last week I started smelling my clothes, and I am not talking about dirty ones. I washed all my dirty clothes that I was wearing regularly the first week, so that I would get rid of that smell while trying to quit, at first that smell is attractive and reminds you that you aren’t smoking. Last week was a whole new experance, this was when I smelled clean clothes and realized that one regular wash doesn’t get the smoke smell out, and I had started to turn from it being a smell that made me want to get a cigarette, to it being a smell that I couldn’t believe I didn’t notice and allowed myself around others with.

So over the last two weeks I washed everything. I washed all the dirty clothes in the house, all the bedding I might have even accedentally used in the house, and all my clean clothes and bedding, and forget normal wash. Used my dad’s machine set on heavy load, sanitize cycle with extra soap and softener. Even after that, there are a couple of things that still have that smell, but only a small hint of it. For the most part I seem to have gotten rid of it. I also cleaned my car and wipped it down, because it was getting hard to sit in it with that smoke smell. It still smells a litte, but its become tolerable.

It wasn’t until this week though that I started noticing two different things. First off, how other smokers smell. If I could somehow appoligize to every non smoker that had to stand that close to me in a check out line, I would. I closed my eyes and just thought of the fact that he was me just a month ago, and tried not to cry. The other thing that has really started to come back is taste, and I really don’t like how some things taste. For example, I bought this black cherry water flavoring about 6 months ago and liked it alright, but now I don’t like it at all. Can’t wait to run it out and never buy it again. There are a lot of things like that.

Now there is one last thing that I seem to be holding on to, and strangly it is also the first thing. My first reaction to not smoking was being tired. I don’t mean just a little drowsy, but falling over and can’t stay awake tired all the damn time. That has gotten a little better but not much. I don’t know what is in cigarettes that makes this happen, but I am sick of it. Tired right now and I can’t even explain why.

Now I should say something about the ecigs that I used to make this happen. I am still using those. I have heard from pleanty of people in real life about how I haven’t quit but just substituted one cigarette for another. I completely disagree. Water vapor with nicotine isn’t anything like a cigarette. I have been experamenting with different mixes to cut the strength of the nicotine down and even possibly stop ecigs completely, and plan to start cutting them down after I pass my first month as planned, but I don’t see the ecig at this point any different than a patch, and there are plenty of people that use those for really long time periods to quit smoking, and there is not bitching about them just finding a different cigarette. Mine just mimmics the action of smoking at the same time, which is what I really needed.

 
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Posted by on July 16, 2012 in Smoking

 

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Day Fourteen

This is it, the magical fourteenth day, I didn’t actually think I would get to this point. Even at day seven I was having my unexpressed doubts. I call this the magical day, because I have always been told that it takes two weeks to break a habit. Now this doesn’t mean that I will never have another craving for a cigarette, it just means I made it to the day I had set for myself as a goal to know that I had the ability to not smoke.

It really hasn’t been easy but I am slowly getting use to it. The hardest part is how boring some things are when I am not smoking. I was doing laundry the other day, usually I will go outside and have a couple of cigarettes between loads, but instead I found myself bored and watching the machines spin. I am sure in time I will find things to do and things to focus on other than the fact that I am not smoking, but I am glad to say that, while focusing on the fact that I am not smoking, I am also not driven to break down and buy a cigarette, or even ask someone I see smoking for one.

When it comes to the ecigs, which have been my main source of fixing cravings, I am really happy to see that my habit in using them has become different from smoking cigarettes. While I was sitting in the laundromat bored, I was thinking about smoking, but I didn’t quickly run to the car and grab my ecig. The ecig allows me to have something to fill in when I have an oral or nicotine craving, but I just don’t have that same absolute desire to make sure I am using it, like I had with smoking. Not that I hate it or am giving it up right away either, currently I am working with my friend John to mix our own flavors and reduce the amount of nicotine I am taking in for a later goal.

For now I think this goal has been destroyed. I am setting a new goal of one month from today.

  • Weekly check ins.
  • I will wrap it up on August 9th with a final post on smoking.
  • This goal is to continue to not smoke and try to work on distractions to the cravings I am still having.
  • To continue to use the ecig, but reduce the amount of fluid I am using. It will be a lot harder to judge how much fluid I use since I am changing to filling my own carts in about a week, so I do not have a basis for the criteria yet, but I will soon.
  • Finally, to spend $150 or less on ecigs in the next month and have a plan in one month to reduce that more.
 
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Posted by on July 9, 2012 in Smoking

 

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Prep for Step Two

So after a lot of thought about it, and encouraged by the results of quitting smoking, I have decided to move on to step two. Step two is to reduce then eliminate nicotine intake completely. This is the step I am still not looking forward to, simply put its hard and scares me to try it. Just reducing the nicotine last time was a bitch and I don’t know about taking it in half then getting rid of it completely, but I am going to give it a shot. Why not, as long as the result of failure or set backs is just more nicotine in the ecig and not cigarettes, then I at least wont feel as bad about it.

So I am going to do this I need to plan for it. I have less than two weeks worth of ecig carts at home, I have decided to not order anymore than those for now. I do not want to cut completely off nicotine until the ninth, that is my fourteenth day without a real cigarette. Lets get past step one before starting step two, after all I am doing this in steps for a reason.

After some research into it, I have decided to make my own liquid to refill my carts, and then eventually have to buy blank carts to fill. I decided to fill my own because the ingredients needed to make the base liquid can be made from a trip to Walmart very cheaply. Vegetable glycerin is the main ingredient in most of the ecigs I’ve tried, and you can get that at Walmart for $5 for 6oz. Then there are a lot of different ideas online for flavoring it. The only ingredient more needed is the nicotine solution, which I don’t need if I’m going nicotine free, or at least trying to.

I will first use up the carts I have used, which won’t be completely dry. Refilling them with a non nicotine solution will not make them nicotine free since there will be left over nicotine in the cart already. Granted, there won’t be a lot, but I am hoping that if I do not suck the carts dry, but use them until they pass their peak and then start topping them off with my nicotine free liquid, I will cut the nicotine liquid down not just pushing it out. Making it so that I have a slow phase each day of getting more in the morning and less as the day goes on. Then slowly I will be rid of the nicotine completely. When the current carts run out I will order new empty ones.

This sounds like it will take a long, but no, I plan to start topping off carts right away at night and using  new ones during the day. Start phasing now, but a lot stronger than on the ninth when I will do the phase more aggressively. I will start a daily count and record my progress as soon the after I use my last pre-filled cart and am only using refilled carts, or self filled blanks.

I do want to say this, I have never successfully quit nicotine completely. Although, until a week ago, I had never gone more than two days without a cigarette since I started smoking, so I am hopeful, but I am not at all lying to myself or making proclamation to my inevitable success. I am going to try, and I am going to give it my all, and if I do fail, then I fail and I regroup and try again at another time, but I know I will never get there if I don’t try.

 
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Posted by on July 5, 2012 in Smoking

 

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Day Seven

I have been writing these over the day and posting them later or the next day, but I am writing this one day of and posting it right off. I am getting this written early, to honestly get it out-of-the-way. I told myself I was going to do Day’s 1-7 &14 of not smoking, then I would come back when and if I did no nicotine and do the same thing.

At this point there is not much more to say though. I am at day seven, I am nerves off and on, but I haven’t smoked or have I felt a desire to do so. My desires to smoke have been addiction driven, not desire to smoke just to smoke. The ecigs are helping more than anything else I have tried, but I don’t know if they are replacing the nicotine addiction or helping make that go away. There might be the argument for both sides, but I started at a high nicotine level that was supposed to be equivalent to the amount I smoked, and have already reduced that level twice while reducing how much I use by less than half. Plus I have been able to not use it at all in the last week and not fall to pieces. I think this is looking great, definitely better than anything I have tried in the past.

That’s it. I am going to work on a long wrap up over the next week, for a week-long post on day 14. If I make it to there, hopefully then I have made it past the hump and wont smoke again.

 
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Posted by on July 2, 2012 in Smoking

 

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