??? Well this is my sixth week of being smoke free. It is still a battle though. I went to pick up an antique bedroom set we bought for my daughter and the auctioneer was smoking a cigar and goodness it smelled so good. Made me yearn for one of my own. But I made it through the loading and unloading of the furniture. Pretty heavy stuff and I am paying the price for it as my back, neck and shoulders are killing me even after doubling up on my pain pills. It was worth it though to make my little girl so happy. I call her my little girl even though she is no longer little but a young woman instead. Anyway we loaded the bedroom set onto my brother – in – laws truck and away we went smokeless.

??? It is still a struggle at times with me quitting smoking. Often times I lean back from this keyboard and still try to reach for a cigarette. I haven’t gotten rid of the cigs I smoked. I had a full carton in the freezer still until my brother came and snitched him a pack of mine as he is not making the progress of not smoking as well as I. I do not know how long the taste for a smoke will last in me as this is the first time since I was a teenager that I was totally smoke free. If I wasn’t smoking cigarettes I was smoking cigars or a pipe. Mostly cigars though as they were easier to smoke that a pouch of tobacco and a pipe to carry. Plus I had something to clench in my teeth and chew on when it wasn’t burning.

??? Six weeks in and I can taste my food better and the aroma of cigarettes don’t bother me, except to annoy or disgust me as I do not like the smell of them. I do still love the smell of a cigar or a pipe and that is the hardest thing to ignore. I am glad I was not close to a store when he was smoking near me today, or him offer me one of those as I might have taken him up on the offer. I hope I have the will power to stay smoke free but for some reason that type of tobacco makes me drool for some like it. Cigarette smoke itself I now find disgusting. I did notice something else that comes from no longer smoking. My nicotine stained fingers and nails have cleaned up. My fingers used to be stained with a semi permanent brown from the second joint of my fingers to the tip and nail. My index and middle finger were stained that way and no matter how hard I tried it would not come off even washing them in bleach did nothing. Now I could take a knife and scrape the fingernail semi clean but not the fingers. I am very tickled about that as my hands look clean now. Not like they used to be.

??? If you are trying to quit smoking cigarettes yourself, my advice would be to make up your mind that you are no longer a slave to the cigarette and are going to quit. Not that you are thinking of quitting or may quit. You have to make the decision that strongly says “I QUIT” then stick to it. There is almost half a pack of cigarettes in the old keyboard slide in/out drawer directly below my keyboard but even when I do get the urge I say “NO” and stick to it. In the end that is what it all boils down to- Saying No to Cigarettes.

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