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GUS (Gave Up Smoking) is a community support diary for Kossacks in the midst of quitting smoking. Any supportive comments, suggestions or positive distractions are appreciated. If you are quitting or thinking of quitting (or want to support quitters), please - join us! We kindly ask that politics be left out.

You can also click the GUS tag to view all diary posts, or access the GUS Library at dKosopedia for a great list of stop-smoking links. Check it out!

Want to make sure you never miss us? Follow (♥) the GUS tag to keep GUS in your Stream. It's just that easy!

A message to all quitters: you don't have to avoid GUS if your latest attempt to quit didn't work out. We won't give you a bad time and we consider the attempted quits as "practice" for the real quit.


"I’ve a right to think," said Alice sharply...

"Just about as much right," said the Duchess, "as pigs have to fly."

Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, Lewis Carroll

For every one of us who decides on a purely out-of-the-blue, spur-of-the-moment quit, there are dozens upon dozens of us who take the Long Goodbye approach to quitting smoking.

No, most of us dance around it in our heads for a long time before we actually take the plunge: pondering the pros and cons, weighing the consequences, anticipating the pitfalls, refuting (or reinforcing) our own rationalizations, fighting with the instincts we know aren't helping, facing our fears, and trying to pre-manage the stress we will be facing.

In short, most of us spend not a little time coming to terms with the BIG GIANT SCARY UNKNOWN that we fear quitting will leave us to grapple with, tooth and claw, and all by our lonesome, without even a comforting smoke to rely on anymore. People don't know how long most of us grapple with this process...I think if they did, they might have a little more sympathy!

This even happens to the Cold Turkey quitters among us, yours truly included. While it's true that I didn't know my quit day was going to be my quit day until...well, that day, it's not as though I hadn't considered quitting before. Perhaps I hadn't considered it seriously enough, it's true, but it had been buzzing around in my cranium for a good decade---at least---before I actually did it.

In fact, if you'd asked me the morning of the day I quit when I thought I'd actually quit, I'd probably have replied: "...well, I know I need to quit, but realistically? When pigs fly is probably more accurate." And then I would have choked out a little self-depreciating laugh, feeling the anxiety ratcheting up again, and probably, reflexively, reached for my pack of Camel Lights.

Because that's what you do.

It's really hard to finally arrive in that place where the pigs are preparing to go airborne. It feels as though you're fighting every instinct and impulse (which you kind of are), kicking an old friend to the curb, and deliberately creating a reality for yourself where things just aren't the way you feel they're supposed to be, and won't ever be "normal" again (until they are, but you don't know that quite yet).

Even if you have one of those "flipping the switch" moments, the quitting epiphany that lets you know that ZOMG RIGHT THE HELL NOW!!!11!!! is the time, and you are 1000% done done done with the smokes, it's STILL scary and weird.

Scary, weird, and totally worth it. Release the flying piggies!

                     
                     

Who's Your Little Buddy?
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