You are currently viewing Change


I am trying to get back into some sort of rhythm or routine with writing but life keeps intervening. First it was a week or two of computer issues, then the craziness of the holiday, and now…..sick. A cold, my first (I think) since I retired. Which is remarkable seen that the cold germ and I were deeply entrenched in a steamy toxic relationship for years – stress, long hours, and exhaustion provided a vile cocktail that would feed the germ and drag me down. It seemed that I would just be clearing the cough of one cold when another would slide into me. And even though I do have a cold, it is not the same as the old days; being able to stay home and to sit and rest makes all the difference in the world. But even though it is not dragging me to one of Dante’s levels of hell, it is still unpleasant and disruptive.

I do have to add, the fact that I was a smoker certainly contributed to the depths and severity of the colds I caught. I had my first cigarette around age 14 I think, and really never looked back. It ws intermittent at first but by age 19 or so, I was smoking every day. At its worst, I would do two packs in a day – hard to even type that it is so embarrassing – but it is true. It was the single most insidious addiction I think could ever plague a human. The habit required careful planning to ensure I would not run out of the 20 little precious monkeys destined for my back. Storms required advance purchases to ensure I’d have enough to tide me over. Trips were difficult as smoking became less and less tolerated in public. I recall taking a airplane trip and being able to smoke in my seat in the plane. And then I remember a layover in Philadelphia and I had to leave the airport and go outside to have a smoke, then go through all the security lines all over again. Insidious.

I can’t tell you how creative I could be in finding places to sneak a smoke. And I hated every minute of it. I hated the lack of self-control; hated the grip it had on me. Yet on I smoked. Through my 30’s and 40’s and into my 50’s. Don’t get me wrong, I remained fit – ran, hiked, and so on. But I smoked, like the proverbial chimney, for years. I did quit though – five or six times. But could not seem to make it hold – there was always an excuse, a reason, to go back to smoking. And I loathed myself for it; absolutely hated the grip in which it held me. I got myself down to fewer and fewer each day until it was just two, and then, just one. And on my 57th birthday, I finally loosed the grip in which the habit had held me for over 40 years and I stopped altogether.

Over the last years since I did quit, I’ve watched friends who still smoke literally run out the gates at work at break time and lunch time so they could have a smoke. And every time I saw it I felt a pang of empathy for them, knowing all too well the demon driving them and the self-disappointment in yielding to it once again. Rain, snow, cold, blazing heat – it mattered not – out they went to scratch that itch.

I am so glad to be done with it; I used to dream of a time when my actions would not be driven by nicotine craving and never believed that the day would come. There is some measure of freedom from quitting, some sense of pride, but still some sense of shame that I let it happen to myself for so long. And of course, the health side of the equation. You simply can’t smoke for almost 50 years and not have it affect your health; it may well be the reason I am on high blood pressure medication. So far (knock on wood) the BP is the only impact of which I am aware. And I pray it stays that way; I worry about heart damage and lung damage but happily so far neither has manifested any issues.

It is difficult for me to imagine someone more addicted than was I; perhaps there are others, but I can tell you that I was really bad. And we are now coming up on 7years without a cigarette; no slips, no sneaks – done and done. And if I could do it, so can you. Whether that mean cigarettes, alcohol, drugs, or whatever – YOU can take control of your life again and defeat the demon. It is not easy and it is not quick; it is a minute by minute, day in and day out battle for a very long time until you walk out the other side addiction free. But it can be done. As long as you want to end it, as long as you want to be free of it, you can. But you have to want to; if you are doing it because your wife or brother or mother is telling you that you need to quit, you will likely not succeed; you have to quit because YOU want to quit.

And this concept is not limited to a quitting bad habit, quite the contrary – you can apply the same effort and reap the same rewards to anything you wish to change about yourself: weight loss, better fitness, education are all examples of changes you can make in yourself for the good.  They all require commitment and of course that starts with wanting to make the change. The power is within you dear reader – the depth of resolve of the human spirit is incredible. I hope you find the resolve to change something in your life and I wish you great success in doing it.

This Post Has 15 Comments

  1. pandora bracelet

    Thank you so much for giving everyone such a marvellous opportunity to read in detail from this site. It really is very fantastic plus stuffed with fun for me and my office acquaintances to visit the blog at the least thrice a week to learn the latest issues you have. And of course, I’m so usually amazed with the tremendous opinions served by you. Certain 2 areas in this post are in truth the simplest we have all ever had.

  2. Tisha

    Magnificent items from you, man. I have take into accout your
    stuff previous to and you’re simply extremely excellent.
    I really like what you’ve obtained here, really like what you are saying and the way during which you assert it.
    You’re making it enjoyable and you still take care of to stay it sensible.
    I cant wait to learn far more from you. That is really a great web site.

  3. Harris

    I loved as much as you’ll receive performed proper here. The cartoon is tasteful, your authored material stylish.
    however, you command get bought an nervousness over
    that you wish be delivering the following. ill undoubtedly come further
    previously again since precisely the same nearly very ceaselessly inside case you shield this increase.

    Also visit my page; True Burn Keto Pills (Harris)

  4. Maurice

    Thanks in favor of sharing such a pleasant thinking, piece of writing is fastidious, thats why i have read
    it fully

  5. Sheree

    Hi there! I understand this is somewhat off-topic but I needed to ask.
    Does building a well-established blog such as yours require a lot of work?
    I’m completely new to running a blog however I do write in my journal everyday.
    I’d like to start a blog so I can easily share my personal
    experience and feelings online. Please let me know if you have any kind of ideas or tips for brand new aspiring
    bloggers. Thankyou!

  6. Fidel

    Now I am going to do my breakfast, after having my breakfast coming again to
    read more news.

  7. Francesco

    Incredible points. Great arguments. Keep up the great spirit.

  8. Allie

    I blog often and I genuinely appreciate your content.
    Your article has really peaked my interest. I will book mark your blog and keep checking for
    new details about once per week. I opted in for your Feed too.

  9. Denny

    Currently it looks like BlogEngine is the best blogging platform available right now.
    (from what I’ve read) Is that what you’re using on your blog?


    It’s actually a cool and helpful piece of information. I’m glad that you shared this helpful info with us.
    Please stay us informed like this. Thank you for sharing.

    my site – Moscatcher Reviews,,

  11. Xiomara

    Greate pieces. Keep writing such kind of info on your site.

    Im really impressed by your blog.
    Hey there, You have done a great job. I’ll definitely digg it and in my view suggest to my friends.
    I am confident they’ll be benefited from this web site.

  12. Chase

    It’s difficult to find experienced people for this topic, however, you sound
    like you know what you’re talking about! Thanks

    Here is my web site – Chase

  13. Sherita

    Everything is very open with a precise description of the issues.
    It was truly informative. Your site is extremely helpful.

    Thank you for sharing!

  14. Elva

    Hurrah, that’s what I was seeking for, what a data!
    existing here at this blog, thanks admin of this web site.

  15. Lucy

    I’m amazed, I have to admit. Seldom do I encounter a
    blog that’s equally educative and interesting, and without a doubt,
    you’ve hit the nail on the head. The issue is something not enough men and women are speaking intelligently about.
    I’m very happy that I came across this during my search for something concerning this.

Leave a Reply