January 4, 2011

how I plan to quit smoking

I actually did it several years ago, when I got pregnant with my first daughter. The moment I found out I was pregnant, poof!, I went cold turkey. And then, when my eldest daughter was only 6 months old, I found out I was pregnant again with my second daughter. So my break from smoking got extended. 

All in all, I did not smoke for three long years.

But I went back to smoking when I was done with the second pregnancy and the whole breastfeeding thing. I smoke from 5 to 10 cigarettes a day, more when I’m out on a drinking session with husband or friends or officemates. 

Given that my husband is an advocate of the rock and roll lifestyle just like me, then add to that the industry that I belong to (advertising: where the crazy, creative, stressed-out party peeps prance about), then you just know that I can be doomed to a lifetime of health-zapping vices (but for the record, my vices are limited to smokes, beer and…. chocolates :-).

Then in September 2009, I posted this on Twitter:

A good 15 months later, I made good my promise. I first cut down on my cigarette consumption from 10 sticks to 7 sticks to 5 to 2 to 1. Then finally, there'd be days too when I'd survive without a single stick.

But knowing that quitting will mess with my mind big time, I allow myself to smoke one stick or take a few puffs if I feel like it, even after a period of ciggy-less days. This somehow eases the pressure of quitting, usually brought about by counting the “days since my last stick”.

At work, I bring an apple just to satisfy my oral fixation. At home, I’ve chosen books that are page-turners (Little Bee by Christopher Cleave, and now Lost Symbol by Dan Brown) so I can forget my cravings.

It helps also that I proclaim to friends that “I am going to quit smoking” instead of the declarative “I’ve quit”, even if the process of quitting has started already.

They say that it takes 100 days to form a new habit. Let’s talk again after 100 days. Wish me luck! 


Kymmie said...

Somehow I missed this original post, but thankfully (thanks to LinkWithin) I found it. How is this going? It's hard to quit, but I admire your persistence (and even cutting down). My husband smoked for 15 years before giving it up. But he hasn't smoked since. (In his dreams he's still a smoker apparently). How's that for weird? Giving you loads of encouragement... xx

supermac said...

Thanks for constantly encouraging me, Kymmie. I started cutting down in December and by the time I wrote this piece, I would survive several days of not smoking. The last time I puffed (and I did not even consume a whole stick) was last January 11. It's VERY, VERY difficult but I'm committed to this cause ;-)