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Tuesday, August 9, 2016
I don't want to smoke but I don't want to quit. I do want to quit but I do want to smoke. I hate that I smoke yet love when I smoke. I have no control but must be in control. I know I must quit but know that I can't. I know I can quit but fear that I will and then be left without my cigarettes for the rest of my life. When I light a cigarette, I am really lighting a fuse. The longer it burns, the shorter my time.
I have lied and denied, joked and rationalized, compared myself to others to justify my smoking, and pretended that it just doesn't matter. I have looked for excuses to continue and created situations that allow me to maintain my smoking. Later, my favorite word, later.
Comfort when I am down. Reward when I am happy. Consolation when I am wrong. Distraction when I am bored. Filler when I am empty. Company when I am alone. Rebellion when I am restricted. Composure when I am nervous. Attention when I am forgotten. Retribution when I am righteous. Release when I am pressured. The answer when I question. The answer, the answer, no matter the question. Impatience, tense impatience, easy to distract, hard to please, easy to bore, hard to imagine. Why can't I quit?
I know the answers. I'm just too busy looking for reasons to continue. I must not quit smoking. Instead I must become officially free from nicotine. I must reject the role of victim and regain control of my own choices. Everything I need is inside of me. I am the answer.
If I really want to get off nicotine:
Start off nicotine, start with the rest of my life, tobacco-free, one minute at a time, one hour at a time, one day at a time, one life time. Question, question, no matter the answer. Breathe deeply. Feel the rush of freedom. Pay the price gracefully, without whining or complaining. Become joyfully free, moving beyond the grief of regret. It is time to become new. It is time to snuff the fuse.
See the Off (Officially free from) Nicotine© program by Scott Frank, MD, MS.
Last Reviewed: Jan 13, 2011
Associate Professor of Epidemiology and Biostatistics
School of Medicine
Case Western Reserve University