“So, Wolf, how’s it going, you know, with the no smoking thing.”

“It’s ok.  When I feel like I would like to smoke, I just don’t.”

“It can’t be that easy.  What about the addiction?  And the psychological habits that die hard?  Not to mention, the withdrawals and the cravings.  People just don’t up and quit, do they?”

“I don’t know what people do, nor do I know how others quit.  For me, it comes down to either giving in or toughing it out.  And believe me, I am not tough. So when I need a break, I have substituted chocolate Easter eggs for cigs, in my coat pocket, and I go for a walk.   I rarely eat the egg, I don’t smoke, and I still see my friends while I am out walking.   If my friends want to smoke, fine and dandy.  I have always enjoyed a smoke break.  I am not one to judge others.  However, last week, when I was really quite ill, I didn’t crave anything, not food, not wine, and not  smoking, so now that I am feeling more alive, I figured quitting smoking could not be any worse than the misery I went through  last week.  And it isn’t.”

“What about when you have a few brewskies?  Or when you sit down to write your blog with a glass of wine?  Do you still reach for a cig?”

“I do. Something feels strange.  I reach for a cig.  And then, I take a deep breath, and ask myself, “So, you idiot, you want to smoke?  Go ahead.  It’s your choice.”

“And?”

“So far, I have just said no.”

“What about that day, when all hell breaks loose and you need to indulge in your old stress relieving habit? And you puff on a cig?”

“It could happen, I guess.  So what?  And it might not.  So what?  It’s my choice.”

“I bet you go through the day, hyper as hell, wishing you could puff like the magic dragon and feel normal again.”

” Yeah, I do have some moments, and I have heard of ex smokers, who, years later, still crave a cig.  It could happen to me.”

“And?”

“So, I am not looking for a medal or a gold star.  I am breaking a habit, without drugs, without hypnosis, without patches.  I am just saying no.”

“It’s that easy?”

“It’s all about choices, Minnie.  Yes or no? Do it or not do it? Give in or not give in?  Go for a walk or go for a smoke break?  Do the things you always did when you smoked, and one, by one, eliminate the associations.  Am I willing to go endure some discomfort when I feel the urge to smoke?  Can I say no, for this moment?  This instance?  So far, so good.”

“You ain’t out of the woods yet Wolf.”

“I don’t pretend to be, Minnie  But for now, this old Chicken Butt is just saying no.”

 

Wolf

 

 

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