Tuesday, December 23, 2008

A Progress Report

I'm sure a few of you are wondering how I'm doing on the smoking thing. Mostly, I'm amused by the vast spectrum of reactions from my friends and relatives.

To some, even one cigarette means I've totally failed.
To others, 12 cigarettes in a week's time is nothing short of miraculous.

Let's just say there's a special place in my heart for 'the others.'

The positive:

I went two entire days (yes, 48 hours) before my first cheat. You may think that sucks, but hear me out: The last time I went even 24 hours without a cigarette was 1982.

So I'm getting better at it.

After the first cheat, I didn't have a cigarette on the following day. Yes, I had to stay home on a Friday night, avoid the computer, and go to bed early to achieve that milestone, but I figure if that's what it takes...

I would have done better on Saturday if I hadn't discovered two leftover cigarettes in a pack I'd thought empty. Turns out I'm not gonna be one of those people who can leave cigarettes lying around just to prove I'm above temptation. Still...I only smoked one of them right then and there.

I haven't smoked a cigarette at work in over a week.

I haven't smoked a cigarette while getting ready for work in over a week.

I haven't smoked a cigarette while driving to or from work in over a week.

By the way, did I mention I'm taking the drug "Chantix?" (Yeah, that's the one airline pilots are prohibited from using because suicidal thoughts are a possible side effect, although the whole process of trying to quit smoking is so stressful, I'm wondering how you can tell the difference.) Anyway, it's supposed to block the receptors in your brain from experiencing the God-given pleasure that nicotine brings. Now, logic makes me note that you have to SMOKE for this to work, don't you? Guess that's why they say it's okay to cheat during the first month. Plus, I'd swear that sometimes I THINK about smoking and those little nicotine receptors perk up (I picture them as puppies pawing at the air for treats) but because of the Chantix, nothing happens. They're left bereft--like at the airport when you see people waiting at the gate for a dearly-loved relative who doesn't show up.

So sad, it makes you wanna weep. (Yeah, for the airport people, too.)

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