This month it’s Stoptober which is another way the government is trying to encourage people to give up smoking. It’s been nearly 7 years since I gave up the evil weed and I honestly have to say I have never looked back!
I started smoking when I was 14 as my mother was a chain smoker and I had regular access to them. When you’re 14 everything changes, you start doing stupid things in the vain hope of attracting girls and at the time I thought smoking would make the girls come running! As the years went on my smoking habit stopped being a way to impress the ladies and more of something I needed to get me through the day. If I was stressed then I would have a fag, Tired then I’d have a fag, bored then bring on the fags!
Roll on February 2008 and I faced a choice which would shape my future. I was due to get married in October and I wanted to give my bride to be the wedding she deserved however things like big white dresses, fancy cars, Chocolate fountains, posh balloons and DJ’s cost money and with my £6 a day habit I was having difficulty meeting the deadline. Something had to give so I smoked my last cigarette and destroyed the rest in the packet and started my journey to phlegm free lungs.
I decided not to use any nicotine replacement patches or gum as they had never worked for me in the past and decided if I was going to do this then I needed to go cold turkey. The first week was hell! At one point I called my wife to be pleading for her to give me the go ahead to smoke! Then came the point of no return for me and the reason why I have never picked up a fag since. I became very ill with a fever and vomiting. My views are that I suffered the same illness as drug addicts and alcoholics suffer when they go cold turkey. This is why I will never smoke again as the fear going through that illness keeps me on the straight and narrow.
Since I have given up smoking a number of things have improved in my life. Firstly my lungs have improved and I notice that I seem less prone to chest infections than I use to be. My health has also increased and so has my weight! My finances have improved as I am saving about £200 a month and I don’t smell like an ashtray which is always nice!
The best thing however is the knowledge that my children will never be brought up in a smokey environment the way I was and hopefully they will never be encouraged to take up the dreaded weed.