Smoking made me a pretentious loser with gross breath

I started smoking when I was 18. Like most kids that try it, that’s all I wanted to do – try it. What was the big deal with this stuff anyway?

Apparently, not much.

When I took my first drag, nicotine and smoke filled my lungs and my body summarily rejected this activity: not today, idiot. NOT today.

I ignored what my body was telling me and tried smoking again a few weeks later. This time, I fought through the agony and at some point, a long time after, my body gave up its opposition and I discovered what I would cherish most about smoking: the calming, near effortless way the smoke would slowly dance around my head and leave me hypnotized.

So I smoked for a few years and greatly enjoyed the routine of it all. Cigarettes became a companion, a social aid, a soothing mechanism, a vice.

I shrugged my shoulders at the fact that these things were slowly killing me from the inside and my asthma was quickly becoming unmanageable.

But in the fall of 2000, after a warning from a doctor that I would probably develop emphysema soon and watching a commercial of model Christy Turlington talk about quitting smoking after her father quit and eventually dying from lung cancer, I quit smoking. Just like that.

I also gained a bunch of weight, my social anxiety ran rampant and I was a nervous wreck.

But at least I quit.

And now, sixteen years later, there is this urge to poison my lungs once again.

I just want it all to stop.

I think?

It all started last summer. Actually, it slammed into me and made me breathless. There was this craving, an insatiable need my body was telling me to satisfy immediately or it would do horrible, horrible things to me.

But like all the problems I encountered in my life, I ignored it, even though it felt like an ex-lover in a dream calling out to me, wanting me to come back, only to wake-up and realize it was me who was pining over him the entire time.

Can I resist?

Maybe. Probably.

I’m sure making and eating dozens of muffins will help. And pancakes. And pizza. And drinking wine. Definitely the wine.

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