my 27-month ramble (originally posted on february 19, 2004); this tale is all about paying the price to get free, and paying the price to stay free, no matter what.

paying the price

2009 February 28

there was a time in your life when you didn't smoke (it may be difficult to imagine at this moment, but it's true). at the time you first chose to become a smoker, it was a brand-new thing for you, and not one that came naturally or easily; you had to practice. you had to work at it.

i'm no superman; i'm just a guy who has made the choice not to feed his addiction to nicotine, just for today, over and over again, no matter what.

you had to pay the price.

the price you paid to become a smoker probably included some discomfort; coughing, choking, dizziness, nausea, etc... and yet, you practiced smoking, over and over again, until it began to feel natural and easy. until it became such a part of your life that you began to identify yourself with it. until it became such a part of you that you couldn't imagine yourself any other way.

now you've decided that you don't want to be a smoker any more, and, because of the conditioning you've put your mind and body through, it feels like a brand-new thing to you. it doesn't feel natural or easy. you'll have to practice. you'll have to work at it.

you'll have to pay the price.

the price you'll have to pay to become a non-smoker will probably include some discomfort; cravings, nervousness, irritability, etc... but if you practice not smoking, over and over again, it'll start to feel natural to you. it'll start to feel easy. it'll start to become such a part of your life that you'll begin to identify yourself with it. it'll become such a part of you that you won't be able to imagine yourself any other way.

twenty-seven months ago today, i chose to become a non-smoker again. at first, it felt totally wrong; after all, i'd conditioned my mind and body for over thirty-five years to believe that i was a smoker. it didn't feel natural not to smoke any more. it didn't come easy. i had to practice. i had to work at it.

i had to pay the price.

if you're interested in reading about the price i've paid, you've come to the right place; that's what these "tales from the quit" are all about. if you choose to read more of them, please keep two things in mind:

first, i'm no superman; i'm just a guy who made the choice (and continues to make the same choice, every day) not to feed his addiction to nicotine, just for today, and has paid the price to stick by that choice, over and over again, no matter what. and now, it feels natural. now, it feels easy. now, it's such a part of my life that i can't imagine myself going back.

second, you can do this, too. just be willing to make that choice, over and over again, until it starts to feel natural and easy. just be willing to work at it.

just be willing to pay the price.

no matter what.

choose life!

kevin - grateful to be in my 823rd day of freedom today!

11 responses leave one →
  1. 2004 February 24
    Howard permalink

    Congratulations Kevin. You're a strong person. You made a VERY valid point that you're not superhuman and you just made a concious decision to stop feeding your addiction. That is so true.

    You are a tribute to us all - good luck.

  2. 2004 July 7
    llm permalink

    Thanks for the encouragement. I am on day 41 of not smoking. It seems to get harder every day and I needed your boost. I got your site info from American Lung message board. Thanks. I welcome any encouragement. Last time I quit was several years ago for 6 months and it only got harder the entire time. I want to get past that this time.

  3. 2004 July 18
    Eileen (skiermom) permalink

    AWESOME!!!!!!!!! Approaching my 1 year mark on Saturday. My mother is soon to really be suffering the affects of emphysemia....I have friends who 'want to' quit. We've done it....we choose it.......woohooo!!!!!!!!!!

  4. 2004 August 23
    Deb (seabrez) permalink


    Thanks! I'm ready to "pay the price" and "choose life".


  5. 2004 September 24
    gloria jackson permalink

    While reading the information about COPD and emphysemia, I feel that it offered the reader a great deal of insight as it relates to those who have a common factor in these conditions. I am one of those people. I would however like to see more preventive messages and also what the data show about the longevity and well-being the person with this malady hs.

  6. 2004 October 16
    Gloria Jackson permalink

    Here I am once again. At first, I was not aware that I was at this particular sight. I was pleased to read my comments from September. I would also like to say that I have been smoke free for 3 years now. I truly enjoyed smoking. I like the feeling that I would get. I became extremly ill and had to be rushed to the hospital. I was told that I had emphysema. The feeling that I had, the weight that I lost, the many tba I had hooked up for my family to see, 2 weeks that I spent in the critical care unit was enough for me to want to stop smoking. If you love life and your family, you will do anything to feel better.

  7. 2005 April 2
    Terry permalink

    To quit smoking is the hardest thing in the world we will ever do. I have been smoke free since sep 23 2004 and recently I have had many urges to sart smoking again. My brain is trying to trick me still by saying I could have only one once in a while and that would be fine. I know better than that, and am fighting so hard to resist. I recently lost my mother and am suffering from moderate depression, I pray that I can get through this without slipping back. Thanks to this web-site I know today I will remain smokefree. thank you

  8. 2005 May 19
    Liz permalink

    Thank you so much for your wisdom, Kevin. You are so right about having to Pay the Price.
    Excellant article.

  9. 2005 June 29
    anonymous permalink

    Just read your article on 'paying the price' concerning giving up smoking and felt I had to respond. May I say that when I first read your article it brought back many memories of the time I eventually 'gave up the weed' which is now going on 18yrs. It certainly would be inspiring to the people still with the addiction. I wanted though to add my comments to your page as the biggest problem for me and I believe all others in this predicament is retaining the will power to stop. In my case it became easy - my wife became pregnant after many years of trying and one miscarriage.

    I swore to God that if she kept the child I would never smoke again. He's now going on 18yr and I have a 13yr old daughter. If I had smoked again and anything happened to them then I could never forgive myself. The point is I feel you need the reason which is personal to the individual to retain the will power to achieve the ultimate aim of making smoking a thing of your own past. I hope this story helps the cause and if you wish to use it on your site to encourage others then please do. Keep up the very good work.

    Vince McF

  10. 2009 February 28

    note: the comments above were left on the original tale at the date and time indicated.

  11. 2010 January 25
    Sandra UK permalink

    Thought I would leave a little ditty as I think you site is brill
    Best wishes to all that say NO and commiserations to all who say YES

    I’m really glad that we’ve all quit
    Cause in the past we’ve smoked some sh**
    Smelly Hair Hands and Breath
    Shorter Life but longer Death
    Up the hills you’ve got no puff
    Smokers cough that makes you rough
    So pass each day without the weed
    Cause only then will you succeed
    So Bravo to all that now don’t smoke
    Cause early Death is sure no Joke

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