Let me get a cup of coffee and I'll be right back with you.
I wandered down the hall, eyes barely open this morning to brew a pot of coffee. With a steaming cup of brew, I stepped outside to sit for a while at the small table on the front porch. I sat quietly in the early morning hours and listened for the sound of the joggers and the walkers. Sometimes they travel in pairs and in the early morning quietness, I can hear their conversation. I can't discern what they are talking about but just the sound of their voices and soon they appear in my field of vision. I sip and watch and know that soon I will be caffeinated enough to dress in bike shorts, t-shirt and sneakers and reset the odometer on the Trek and follow their example but in my own form of exercise.
I have to laugh now at the times I would sit on that same chair at that same table and enjoy a first of the morning cigarette along with my coffee. The smoke would curl up and the red end of that cigarette would glow while I watched as those walkers and joggers would note my presence, nod and move on. I enjoyed watching them improve their health. I continued to enjoy my cigarettes.
In March I will celebrate two years of being clean. Clean of nicotine and it makes me smile. It took many years of self flagellation and a few tries before I got to where I am today. The husband still enjoys his cigarettes and when people make a comment about it, I'm quick to defend his choice. It's his choice as it was mine. He pays for his cigarettes. It's not illegal YET. He respects others that do not imbibe and I know he envies me my "quit".
Two years ago this March, I entered the hospital for my knee replacement. The husband asks "What are you going to do about not being allowed to smoke?" and I replied, "I'm going to quit." I saw the look on his face. A non believer standing in front of me. I just smiled and entered the surgery suite maxed out on some thing slipped down my IV line.
Hours later, out of surgery, an IV of Dilaudid kept me pain free. I was attached to that IV via a pump with a button to push when I need more pain coverage. For three days, I punched that little button for the delivery of that Dilaudid. It wasn't the pain I was medicating but the nicotine craving and addiction I was experiencing. It takes 3 days for nicotine to completely be washed out of your system and I had those three days of Dilaudid. I've never had a better detour around the cravings for nicotine. I still had to fight the habit but at least the withdrawal from the nicotine was avoided. I slept for most of those three days. I highly recommend it. It's just unfortunate that a knee replacement had to be part of my "quit".
That's my story and I'm stickin to it!