Free Press Archives
READERS SHARE IDEAS ON SMOKING
It would be a sin to not share some great responses from my readers on smoking – the subject of last week’s column. I have never received so many mind-grabbing replies.
Dr. Quentin Lane makes the point that it is all right to go on wanting to smoke. Let him tell his story:
“I smoked my first rolled Duke’s cigarette at four. I found two of my older brothers smoking in the woods and told them I would tell on them if they did not roll me a cigarette. They did, I smoked it and I kept smoking rabbit tobacco and anything else I could find for 52 years! On January 11, 1991 I decided I would quit but I have never to this day ever said, ‘I have quit smoking.’ I always say ‘I have not smoked a cigarette since January 11, 1991. However, I could smoke one ten feet long right now.’”
His email reminded me of a dream my sister had when she quit. She was smoking a cigarette as long as a telephone pole propped up by limbs and every time she’d take a puff she’d have to run and keep it propped and lit.
If you quit, be prepared for experiences like this. Your body is screaming for nicotine and if you know it will happen it will be a little easier to handle.
An Indiana reader reminds us not to make a big drama of it if we fail. She writes, “The addiction trips me up about once a month nowadays. A bit of wisdom from 12 Stepping is to resume quickly without a fuss.” Be proud you tried and try again. Failure is a part of success. Ask Thomas Edison.
One reader may save your sight if you have a family history of macular degeneration. She was diagnosed with macular degeneration in one eye and the ophthalmologist told her, “If there are any in your family who smoke, tell them to stop today. Those who are genetically coded for this disease lose their vision much quicker if they smoke.”
One reader decries the “cigarette Nazis” who are so harsh about smoking. He says the support of his wife enabled him to quit when the “cigarette Nazis” had loaded him with guilt.
Another reader felt I didn’t make it clear a person could quit once and for all the first time. He wrote, “When I had a heart attack twenty years ago I never smoked again. Today it would take someone holding a gun to the head of one of my children or grandchildren to make me puff again.”
Certainly that is the best way to quit. I just don’t think that is the usual experience. I do commend this former smoker and everyone who has done it cleanly and finally.
A musician brings up the case of the special-occasion smoker. He says, “Every Friday I have my coffee and read your article and today I realized I do have a smoking problem. The only time I smoke is when I have a drink. I go out to hear some music and smoke a whole pack.” I have never known a special occasion smoker to not get the habit so my thought, pal, is to quit drinking until you can do it without smoking.
H ow I wish I had met one sweet seventy-year-old lady when I was a young boy and first started down the path of puffery. She says her husband kissed his girlfriend goodnight and she told him there would be no more kisses until he quit smoking because his mouth tasted awful.
How well I remember my first real kiss. If that beautiful, magnificent sweet thing had told me “no more kisses until you quit,” I would have thrown them down on the ground then and there and got me another kiss.
We all need a motivational kicker and I’ll tell you right now, that is mine.
Check out www.daltonroberts.com or Dalton's gathered writings at www.ipsfeatures.com. Best way to write him is firstname.lastname@example.org.