"I Quit Smoking" - One woman's story

I smoked for 9 years, and while I quit a few times along the way, I always went back. Then, a few years ago, I decided to quit for good.

Like many of you reading this, I started smoking early - at 15. My parents smoked, my sister smoked, and many of the people in my new social group smoked too - so of course I would join the pack! Smoking was cool, it was fun, and it felt good. It gave me something to do. Looking back, it was the most stupid - and most dangerous - decision of my young life.

In college, smoking became a way to meet people. There was camaraderie in it. We would stand outside of Lithicum Hall - a great mass of us - in those long minutes before class, puffing away, and talking. And it wasn't just students, professors joined us. In a way, we made social inroads we could have never gotten to in the lecture hall.

In graduate school, fewer of my friends were smokers. Those of us who were would sneak out to a balcony during the 10-minute breaks and puff away but I had little in common with these people (but that they smoked). When I would go out with friends, I was the lone smoker. Ditto at parties. It became to seem as though I was a leper. As though the thing I needed - the thing I LOVED - was a mark against me. And, let's face it, it was.

Why Quit Smoking

Smoking is a disgusting, deadly habit. And while this rarely crossed my mind it must have been on the minds of the people who loved me and the men I dated. For a while, I wouldn't date nonsmokers. I just didn't want to deal with it - the idea that my smoking would be a problem.

Then, I met the man who would become my husband. He was the typical white bread do-gooder - very clean cut and very much against smoking (not that he ever said anything to me about.) When we went out, I smoked, but only when necessary. When we would spend the day together, I would find myself trying, very hard, not to smoke. (You don't realize how hard it is not to smoke until you're actively trying not to.) Then, when he would leave, I would light up and I would love it.

But this idea of my smoking and how long I had smoked really started to get to me. Once, while at the doctor's office for a regular check up, I counted the years I had been a smoker to respond to the questionnaire the nurse had given me. Nine. How had it been nine years? It seemed like an awfully long time for a smart person to do something that wasn't very good for them. So I lied and said eight.

How to Quit Smoking

Then I started thinking seriously about quitting. I just had to figure out how. I decided to cut down as much as possible on my own and finally got myself down to five cigarettes a day. To fully kick the habit, I needed help. I tried the patch, but would always end up ripping it off at the end of the day, going out on my balcony, and smoking. The patch just wasn't working for me. I finished the box (they're not cheap) and went off to find another method.

Herbs to Quit Smoking

Then I stumbled across natural herbs to quit smoking online. The day my quit smoking herbs came, I smoked my last cigarette. When I woke up the next morning, I took the quit smoking herbs instead of lighting up. I took the herbs for two months and I didn't smoke. The herbs helped me quit smoking by reducing cravings and helping with nicotine withdrawal. I'm not going to say that it was easy, but I did it. I quit smoking. I did it with willpower and help from my friends and the herbal smoking cessation pills I found online.

Five years later, and I'm still smoke free. I am healthier and happier and my house and car don't smell like cigarettes. My hair doesn't smell like cigarettes. My clothes don't smell like cigarettes. What's best, I am half as likely to come down with any of the smoking-related cancers. My now-husband still tells me that he's proud of me for quitting. And I am too. That's the thing about quitting. It can be pretty hard and there's a lot that a pill or a patch can't do to separate you from years of learned behavior. But quitting smoking is doable - it's so totally doable!

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