Like the month of my birth, Christmas, and new year, the moth of August is also very significant to me. It is significant not only because it is the height of the summer, but also because it is the moth when I stopped smoking. I smoked my last cigarette – at least the last so far and hoping to be the last – on the 4th of August 2017.
I have already given-up the possibility to be a non-smoker and accepted that I smoking will be a part of my like, that I will smoke all my life. And yet here I am, after smoking my last cigarette for almost a year now, an ex-smoker blogging about being an ex-smoker or at least being able not to smoke.
Like what I have already mentioned in my previous blog, it has been a year since the last time I smoked. Indeed, I am very happy and proud of myself that I was able to stop smoking for a year now. While I acknowledge that I am weak in relation to my addiction and the temptations will always be present, I certainly hope that I will continue to be a non-smoker for many years to come. In my experience, I have come to realize that the success of the latter depends upon the recognition of the former: in order to deal with addiction, one has to recognize the power the addiction holds to the one being addicted.
In the past, I have already made two attempts to quit the nasty habit of smoking and sadly enough, also twice I have failed. The first lasted for six months while the second a year and a half. In those two previous attempts, I made promises to stop smoking and that the cigarettes I was smoking when the promises were made were the last ones I would ever smoke. And yet, I would find myself too weak to resist the strong urge to smoke.
Since last weekend, I have not smoked a cigarette for one whole year. It was on the 4th of August last year at exactly 14:00 when I smoked my last cigarette. I must say that I am proud of myself for this achievement. I think only smokers and ex-smokers can fully appreciate how rewarding and gratifying it is being able to stop smoking and continue to stop smoking for a year and – hopefully – beyond. I deserve to give myself a one year chip for not smoking.
Indeed, I am very proud of myself for being able not to smoke for one whole year since last weekend. I was a smoker and now I am liberated from the nasty addiction that has enslaved me for many years in the past. I thought I will never free from it. Somehow, I have accepted that I will be addicted to cigarette smoking for the rest of my life and that I would never be free from it. And yet here I am, an ex-smoker blogging about being an ex-smoker. I am not a smoker anymore. I find the ‘not smoker’ version of myself more pleasing than the one who was a smoker.
It is Monday. A new week has begun. I like Monday because it gives me a sense that a new cycle has begun and that I could start a fresh. It is an opportunity to do better than the last. For some, at least in my own particular case, how we tackle our Mondays may set the tone on how we may tackle the rest of our week.
My week begun beautifully and productively. I woke up very early because I have to go to work. Now that I am back home from work, I allowed myself a cup of coffee and a peanut butter sandwich and instead of turning on the television, I am sitting behind my desk writing this particular blog entry. Continue reading
In the beginning, I was just merely watching the sitcom hit in the 90s entitled Friends. The more I watch it, the more I find myself to be studying Friends and treating it like a case Study. In this blog post, I intend to reflect upon my ‘addiction’ to watching Friends, but also how this addiction has made me immune to the humour of my favourite sitcom.
Since ‘Friends’ becomes available on Netflix, I cannot stop watching it. Last weekend for instance, I have spent the whole Saturday watching its episodes after episodes. As much as I do not want to be disrespectful to the experiences of those individuals who are actually struggling with their substance addiction, my watching behaviour last Saturday mimics addictive behaviour if not a symptom of addiction itself. I have lost control and this has already happened in the past.
Unlike the more structurally scheduled programmes on local television channels, Netflix offers us relatively more choices and freedom to watch what we want, when we watch them, and how much of it we want to watch in one sitting. As David Brook once wrote in his book entitled, The Social Animal: ‘freedom without structure is its own slavery’ (2012:58). While my face was glued on the screen watching Friends the whole day last Saturday, I was quite aware that I was being a slave of my own freedom.
Last 28th of September this year, I posted a blog entry entitled: Launch(ed) A New Life Regime: A Life Free From Cigarettes. It was a response to the daily prompt challenge in the wordpress.com blogging community (www.dailypost.wordpress.com) in which many WordPress bloggers around the globe, including myself, enthusiastically take part. The word prompt that day was ‘Launch’, which has propelled me to blog about the huge change that has taken place in my life recently, namely, stop smoking.
In that particular blog entry, I have also made a commitment to write about smoking and the pursuit to liberate myself from it. I have promised that ‘not smoking’, like many other subjects, will be a recurring theme here in this blog called the Much To Tell About Nothing. It will be a theme that will hopefully state to permeate in this space like a Patina on a surface that continue to grow over time.
For quite some time, I was already considering of making certain changes on how I live my life. I thought ‘I need to launch a new life regime in which cigarette smoking is totally out of the picture.’ Just quite recently, that new life regime I was thinking to launch has finally been realized. I have stopped smoking. I do not smoke anymore. I am no longer a smoker. Hurrah! Hurrah! Hurrah! If I may say so, I am quite proud and please with myself. It is a tremendous achievement one could not underestimate. The sense of achievement we can experience when we are able to conquer ourselves is so gloriously elevating.