Stopping smoking was the toughest thing I have ever done in my life. I am a Vietnam veteran with PTSD. I have been married for 47 years to a woman who stopped smoking 25 years ago, and I am a recovering drug addict, now 27 years clean. I thought God gave me tobacco to be able to cope with the struggles we all face living life.
Over the years, I tried to stop more times than I care to count, but each time I failed and would pick up my cigarette addiction once again. I began to believe that I would never be able to stop, but then I realized I believed a lie. I had stopped smoking each time, and I was successful for a few weeks or months. This time I used what I had learned to overcome my drug addiction – do it ONE DAY AT A TIME. I stopped thinking as if I had to stop for the rest of my life – just for today, and the days added up.
Another key factor was that I didn’t do it alone. I called the Oklahoma Tobacco Helpline and, with their help and the help of my family and friends, I have been smokefree for 150 days – I think. I stopped counting because it no longer matters how long. Each day was a new day and I made that decision before my feet hit the floor – one more day, one more hour, or one more minute.
Never give up. Even if you pick it back up – so what – start over again. Every day smokefree is a day won.