March 05, 2006

if i were smoking and sxsw

If I hadn't blogged about it when I quit smoking 1 year and 8 months ago I wouldn't believe it has been that long. Someone go check my dates -- it can't be. Seems like only yesterday. Literally. Guess it's that one day at a time thing. It always seems like yesterday.

Or that one pound a day thing. There's THAT too. Damn.

I was thinking about smoking, or not smoking, and getting ready to go to SXSW and how much better (okay, in some ways) it would be if I were smoking because I'd have more energy, more creative, spunky, ideas would be flowing; I'd look better, have those extra nicotine-charged wits about me, and my nerves would be smoke-calmed. I'd be able to hang out with the comfort of my smokes once I got there, find the right conversation, and hit it off with all the other smokers--some of the best hang-out talks take place among the smoker cast-aways. How many cigarettes have I smoked over the phone with folks I'll finally get to meet? Hundreds. Now I meet them and I can't hang.

The thing is, the habit is too long gone to bother picking it back up for a special occasion. It wouldn't make sense. And I guess THIS IS THE POINT where I think I know I've beat it. When suddenly, out of nowhere, even though you would LIKE to, not smoking makes more sense than smoking.

It's a first for me.

So I suppose I should go with this little positive development and think about the GOOD parts of not being a smoker during this trip to Austin... Like:

No need to go buy a carton 'just in case,' and have three cigarettes before getting in the car for the long haul to the Atlanta airport. No need to huff two down on the walk to the terminal entrance knowing they're the last until landing time unless the gate happens to be on one of the couple concourses that have the Evil Smoking Lounges. No having to enter the Evil Smoking Lounge Leper Zone with all of the yellow people and furniture. No looking at the circle-with-the-line-through-it no-smoking sign onboard during takeoff and thinking, THANKS FOR REMINDING ME, ASSHOLE. No wishing the oxygen mask would drop so that there would be SOMETHING to inhale. No rushing to baggage claim when we land to hasten the trip outside where fresh air awaits the flick of my lighter. No standing outside of the car with Jenna bored inside while we do the smoking deed in front of her closed window. No ONLY reserving hotel rooms with balconies or motels with outside doors that make for easy smoking outside. No more runs to the gas station in strange towns wondering if they carry American Spirits. No smoke stink and yellow nails.

No more. I guess just plain no more.

July 4th will be 2 years gang. You were here when I stopped. Can you believe it?

I can't.

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misterorange said...

Congrats on making it two years!

I still smoke cloves with friends, but have successfully stopped smoking at any other time. Special occassions, indeed.

SB said...

It occurs to me -- I never thanked you. It's been one year, two months, six days for me. And I doubt I would have done it without your (and others, yes - Peter Jennings) example.

So thank you.

Bill said...

As of April 14, it will have been 7 years here. I probably had a motivation you didn't: I died because of it and was brought back. I almost never think about it anymore with craving. Congratulations to you and the two folks above for your success.

DeanLand said...

AHA! Major point in the progression of being a smoker to being someone who used to smoke:

When suddenly, out of nowhere, even though you would LIKE to, not smoking makes more sense than smoking.

You have reached a critical traction point. Thinking that, sending that, being able to process that -- instead of all the other "gee, damn, I sure would like one" thoughts - is a huge deal, a quantum leap.

Good for you!

Stay with it.

No doubt now you can do it and do it for good.

Kudos to you!!!