Quit Stories From The First Six Months

Ex-Smokers Share Their Stories

Between nicotine withdrawal and recovering from the many associations we have with smoking, the first six smoke-free months are challenging for most people.

The ups and downs of smoking cessation are poignantly reflected in the following personal accounts that detail the challenges at various points during the first six months smoke-free.

Settle in and do some reading -- there is no shortage of inspiration and motivation to succeed to be found on these pages!

1
Smoking Made Me Feel Pathetic and Enslaved -- Kerri's Story

teenage girl taking cigarette from friend pack close-up
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From Kerri:
"My name is Kerri. I'm 31 years old, and I have been a nicotine addict for more than half of my life. I was 13 when I smoked my first cigarette. My friends turned green; I got good at it. By 15, I was using my lunch money to buy cigarettes."

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2
An Attitude Adjustment at Two Months -- Brad's Story

yoga is the answer
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As humans, we tend to get wrapped up in our own struggles. We lose perspective on how our troubles compare to those of others.  For people recovering from nicotine addiction, this tendency is almost a given, because nicotine withdrawal can be intense.

Brad had a wake up call that quickly brought him out of his self-absorption and gave him a nudge about the importance of quitting at the same time.

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3
The Benefits at One Month Smoke-Free - Robert's Story

As a young father, Robert realized that he was not able to keep up with his son as he grew.  At just 26 years old, he knew that he needed to stop smoking now or face a future that might leave him unable to be the dad he wanted to be.  

The long list of smoke-free benefits Robert began to experience just a month into cessation are impressive and a sign of even better things to come.

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4
A Long List of Benefits -- Marah at 3 Months

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From Marah:
"I hope to encourage new quitters by listing some of the benefits I’ve derived from not smoking these past 3 months. I smoked for 27 years, 20 of those years a pack a day or more. For the last 3 or 4 years, I’d been chewing 5-6 pieces of nicotine gum a day on top of 20 cigarettes, so I had ungodly amounts of nicotine coursing through my bloodstream."

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5
Feeling Good at Five Months Smoke-Free - Mary's Story

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Mary's story is a good example of the process of recovery from nicotine addiction.  It doesn't happen all at once - rather it comes bit-by-bit, with moments along the way that make us think we still miss smoking.

If you're new to cessation, Mary's story will help you understand what to expect a little better.  We are all different, of course, but the more we know about how others have fared with recovery, the better prepared we'll be to manage it well ourselves.

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6
18 Big Benefits at 6 Months Smoke-Free - EB's Story

The improvements EB has noticed since quitting tobacco are big and they are ones that, on the negative side as smokers, we tend to just accept.  Once we quit however, the absence of the unpleasant "side effects" of smoking are something to really cheer about.

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7
The Pros and Cons of Smoking - Zoe's List

Early on in her quit program, ex-smoker Zoe put a list of the pros and cons together as an exercise to help her think about nicotine addiction objectively.

The list serves as a powerful reminder of the negative impact smoking has on our lives while offering little to nothing on the other side of the scale.

Write your own list if you're a new ex-smoker or still thinking about quitting.  It will drive the point home about the destructive influence tobacco has in your life.

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8
When I Think of a Cigarette -- Angela at 6 Months

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From Angela:
"When I think of a cigarette, I think of the four thousand chemicals that would rush into my mouth and burn their way into my once healthy lungs. I think about that nasty taste, that nasty ring of polluted air I would create in the space around my body."

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9
Things I've Learned Along The Way - Dee at 6 Months

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From Dee:
"This does not have to be a 24/7 battle. Fact: there is a price to pay(urges, cravings, etc)for freedom. Relax, accept that fact. Keep it simple, take it one day at a time, and move the heck on and enjoy your life being smoke free"

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10
Don't Let Weight Gain Make You Smoke Again - Maia's Story

Like many new ex-smokers, Maia gained weight when she quit.  While she wasn't happy about it, she didn't let it deter her from the primary objective - recovery from nicotine addiction.

At 5 months smoke-free, Maia felt that she was secure enough with smoking cessation to start to work on the weight issue.  Her story details how she did it, and how she feels now, as a trim ex-smoker.

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