Ten days later: still not smoking.
It’s funny, no later than a few hours into quitting smoking did I have my first smoking dream.
The antibiotics I was taking were knocking me out that Saturday, so I slept all morning. It’s easy to start the day off not smoking when you’re asleep. But alas, as I drifted in and out of sleep, I dozed off again and - bang - I was right in to a dream having a cigarette.
My thoughts were, “What? I’m not supposed to be smoking. Why am I smoking?”
This is pretty common, but I didn’t expect it within hours of my first day. The power of the mind when it comes to addictions is quite something as it spills out from the subconscious.
The other night I had a couple. They are all the same. Even with drinking or drugs they are always the same. The dream starts when I’m doing it. I don’t know how I started or got to this point. It is always at the realization that I’m doing something I don’t want to be doing. These dreams are also accompanied by an internal dialogue, “Damn I’m going to have to go back and admit I had a drink and I’m going to have to move my sober date…” Or, in the case of smoking “What am I doing?! I quit smoking why am I smoking.”
Sometimes they seem so real that I wake up feeling like it really happened. Not so much with the smoking dreams, but the partying ones make me have to take a pause when I first wake up to realize it was just a dream.
I still have the planter on my balcony that is almost filled to the brim with butts. They don’t really serve as a trigger, more as a reminder of how disgusting smoking can really be.
It feels great to be liberated from the smell and the constant Tic Tacs, wondering if I stink of smoke.
One day at the local grocery story there were two friendly women behind me in the line up. I had bought something that required a price check and the cashier left. Behind me I heard Italian, quickly turned around and said, “I just came back from Italy.”
We struck up a nice conversation as we waited. It turned out the mother, probably in her 70s, is from not far from where I was on vacation. Then suddenly she says to me, “You smoke too much. It cuts your life short like my father's.”
I could see the daughter looking very embarrassed. To be honest, I wasn’t. I was grateful to hear that message. It was as if an angel was sent down to tell me to stop smoking.
I did like the Italian “Glamour” cigarettes I was smoking. The same as the nelly little ones I smoked in Canada, but with a pretty flower on the filter. It’s enough to make you want to get cancer.
Still though, I kept on until I finally had enough. That was ten days ago.
Taking action feels good. Today I had my first appointment with a Naturopath physician who came highly recommended. We didn’t address anything about the smoking, but did discuss the winter SADS and the lack of Vitamin D.
Unrelated yes, but important nonetheless because each piece of the puzzle that comes together brings better health and well being.
If anyone is thinking of quitting smoking in Toronto, there is one resource an about which a friend I and were talking, CAMH (Centre from Addiction and Mental Health).
They have a Nicotine Dependence Clinic at their College St and Queen St. sites. However you do have to be referred by your physician. They do provide patches at a much lower cost and can help support you through the process of quitting.