Next Thursday November 18th is the Great American Smoke Out. If you’re a smoker or someone you love is, I’m going to get on my bully pulpit and suggest you seize this moment. I don’t say this lightly. Two and half years ago, after smoking for over 25 years (with a few “pauses” while I was pregnant and nursing), I quit. For good (I hope and pray). I wasn’t a casual smoker. The truth: I was a complete and total addict. Cigarettes were my best friend and constant companion. They were there for me when I was happy, sad, scared, excited, stressed, and angry. I would do anything for them—go out in the freezing cold and the pouring rain; put my kids in front of the TV so I could step outside and get my fix. I mean I loved my cigarettes. My kids and husband begged me to quit; my parents, family and friends did too. I hated having my whole life organized around when I could get my next smoke. It was indefensibly, expensive and unhealthy. But I finally decided that party was over. Quitting was the seriously the hardest thing I ever did. I cried. I was cranky. I chewed a lot of gum. But slowly I started to get used to life as an EX I noticed that I would go for days without even thinking about cigarettes. Seeing people light up stopped making me filled with envy. It actually started to seem kind of like a weird thing to do. And then, a little over a month ago, I— who once barely made it up the subway stairs without being out of breath—ran a half-marathon. 13.1 miles! I cried at the finish line. So basically what I’m trying to say is that if I can do it You Definitely Can! And let’s face it, the truth is that every day being a smoker sucks more and more. Look at these new graphic, horrifying images that the FDA is going to require on each pack of cigarettes. Pretty much a deal breaker. But where to begin? You need a plan. We’ve got a really good one for you right here and over at the .
Go check it out. It was created by the in collaboration with Legacy for Longer Healthier Lives and the Mayo Clinic Nicotine Dependence Center with input from current and former smokers. And it works. I mean you have to work it, but if you just think about how amazing you’ll feel the next time the Great American Smokeout rolls around.
Oh and if you are thinking of quitting or just stopping for the day, leave me a note in the comments so I can cheer you on.