Monday, November 24, 2008


Grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change...

Courage to change the things I can...

And the patience not to choke the crap out of people who try to offer me a cigarette, knowingly or not, after I start taking the above pictured medication to quit smoking, a nasty habit that I've willingly permitted myself to take part in since early 2000.

I've been mildly successful at quitting three times and all three times it was militarily related. I quit for nearly 6 months while in boot camp and training at Fort Jackson, SC. I somehow managed to start again. I quit while in Uzbekistan for almost 3 months. I started again. And, then finally, while in Afghanistan for about a month. I get the picture.

I've never been successful because I never truly wanted to quit until now. I've always attempted to stop based on outside influences. I've never, until now, wanted to quit for me.

I love my wife, my son, my friends, my family and I've always felt obligated to quit for them. As much as I love my wife and son, if this is not a testament to the addiction of nicotine, then I don't know what is. The addiction has always been stronger than my desire to quit for my family.

That's sad, frustrating, and inexcusable. I've often made the joke that I would have preferred to have started shooting heroin rather than smoking. I can't imagine anything being more addictive than this.

I will be successful this time. I will quit for good and I'll never start back. I've done that too many times and it's harder to "quit again" under those circumstances. Once I've had that last cigarette, it's over. I wish I had been the type of person back then that I am now. I wish I could have been headstrong enough to say no to begin with.

Please be patient with me as I work out these personal demons. I may disappear from time to time. I'll do whatever I have to do to insure success.

Oh, and yes, I have a beard now too. Just thought I would go ahead and answer that question before it pops up.

Wish me luck!


Rob- AKA "Guido" said...

Good luck. I know how hard it is. My wife and I nned to quit to. I look at my daughters and thinks how shitty it would be if I wasn't there to walk them down the aisle when they get married.

Dave said...

Congrats on the beard - and for being allowed by your wife to grow one! And good luck quitting smoking!

jv said...

Rob - That's the thing that gets me too, Rob. I don't want end up dying of lung cancer when I'm 50 and never watching my grandkids have babies. I need to live to about 200 years old to realize all of my goals and smoking's not going to help that cause.

Man, good luck when you guys try to quit. You'll definitely have a one man support group in me.

jv said...

Dave - She said it wasn't her decision...haha...she begs me to shave it...

She says she will have control over it in the next month! I doubt it!! hahahahaha

I'm going to grow this thing and house a nest full of baby birds like Peter Griffin did. Ok, maybe not, but I like being unshaven. After 8 years of shaving for the military I love not having to do it. It's invigorating!

Ross said...

Good Luck JV - You better watch that medicine though. It causes people to want to commit suicide and causes diabetes in some people. The FDA has issued a Public Health Advisory on it. My Dr. said it was not safe to take.

dinged corners said...

jv, best of luck with the smoke stop, and do be careful taking that chantix thing.
DRDDC (Deep Rooted Distrust of Drug Companies) Corners

jv said...

Ross - Thanks for your concern. I'm kinda worried about the diabetes thing, myself. I don't even consider the suicide part. I'm not worried about that at all.

I'm going to take the medicine until I realize I've completely quit and then I'm going to stop taking the medicine prematurely.

I'll be honest, I already feel the effects of the drug and I don't like it. Don't get me wrong, it's working, but it makes me feel very, very weird. I'm still smoking this week as usual and my official quit date is next Monday.

I've only taken the Chantix for two days but I already find myself not wanting a smoke.

It's hard to explain. It's not that I don't think about it constantly but my head just tells me "you don't want one". The drug is definitely affecting my thinking about smoking, as it should, but I'm not sure I like that effect.

I suppose it's worth it when I can say that I "used" to smoke...

I'm tired of being ashamed to admit it.

Thanks, Ross!

blogbeckett said...

I, for one, wish you luck, my friend.
I am down to 3-4 a day at the WORST, more often than not only two, oh, and about 10 pieces of nicotine gum.

I try hard not to have any at home, I have a buddy that keeps mine at work.

Still, on deadline days ... ugh.

Good luck, willpower (some might say stubborn, I bet ;) ) is one thing I know you have!