Assuming you’ve quit.
For me, it was a Discovery Channel or Learning Channel or some such show. (This was not a Truth commercial or anything similarly pushy and annoying.)
In this show, a doctor had three lungs from dead people laid out on a table.
One was healthy, one had cancer, and one had emphysema ostensibly caused by smoking.
The doctor poked the healthy lung and the cancerous lung with a medical pointy-tool thing. The lungs sounded squishy, like you’d expect fresh organs from any mammal to sound.
The doctor poked the emphysematous lung with a medical pointy-tool thing. The spot the tool touched crackled and split like tissue paper stretched thin. From what the doctor described, emphysema destroys the air sacs that enable you to breathe. And from the lung I saw, the lungs have a kind of thin “skin” over the destroyed air sacs, although there is nothing but a hole below the “skin”. The tool left a half-inch hole in the lung where it had poked. No way are lungs (or any functional tissue) supposed to have holes that big in them. No way are lungs (or any functional tissue) supposed to make noises like that. It was the crackling, crunching sound that almost made me hurl, rather than the image of the medical tool poking apart this lung.
That was my final straw. It was way more effective than any lectures about smoking.
What was your final straw?
A friend of mine told me that I am addicted. I vehemently disagreed. I quit to prove hime wrong. Have been off for at least 6 months now, not a single drag.
I moved from Italy to Switzerland (at altitude). I used to smoke a pack of Malboro reds a day. One day in my first week in Switzerland, encouraged by the fresh air and water, I decided to take the stairs rather than the lift. 10 stairs later, I knew I had to quit, so I did. The shortness of breath and chest “distress” I felt was a real wake up call. I had been smoker for 7 years, but I never smoked again.[sup]*[/sup]
[sup]* (although I do admit to the odd indiscretion over the last 9 years, but only half a dozen times).[/sup]
I never started – I didn’t want to devote any money toward that activity that could be better spent on pornography.
The clincher for me was turning 30. I’m still on the Pill and smoking after a certain age while taking it is a big No-No. Seriously ups your chances for either Uterine or Cervical (can never remember which) cancer.
I like not having kids a lot more than I like smoking … it was a fairly easy choice to make.
Damned if I know. I smoked after recovering from tuberculous, then two years later quit cold turkey.
I know a cigar smoker who quit the day he burned himself up and died.
I just quit two days and nine hours ago. For me, it was the realization that this long period between assignments may have been due to my smoking and the fact that I constantly smell like an ashtray. Who wants to work with someone who smells like a cigarette all the time?
I’m using the patch and it’s not really that bad. I’m mostly bored, since going out on the porch and smoking was my “focus of laziness” and now I have to relearn “How to Spend Your Time 101”.
A couple of things for me. I used to walk to work, and the smallest hills left me wheezing a bit.
I also hated waking up in the morning and hacking and coughing, sometimes I felt suffocated (especially if I went drinking the night before). I was 24 at the time. Smoking since 18.
I joined a Gym, quit smoking and lost weight to boot. Cold turkey.
Not I, but my SO recently quit. He decided to go seriously into martial arts and weight training. 6 situps later it was time to quit smoking. (He seriously doesn’t like being limited by anything.)
My six-year-old son asking me to please stop. That was a dozen years ago, after 20 years of being a heavy-duty pipe smoker (at the end, nearly a pouch of Captain Black a day).
Did it cold turkey and with Wrigleys for a couple of days, and did not tell anybody in the family until they noticed a few days later.
For up to a year, I had dreams about smoking, or starting to smoke and then realizing I wasn’t supposed to.
Since that time, I have been totally clean except for a single ceremonial cigar one year after quitting to celebrate the birth of my youngest brother’s first child.
One of the best damn things I ever did. Now if I can just lose all this weight…
When I got pregnant. What better reason is there?
I was tired of giving tobacco companies my money. saw something on TV a 60 minutes piece or something and I started thinking. I was living in Key West at the time a pretty expensive place to live. I decided that I could hardly pay my rent but I made damn sure I could afford cigarettes. They had me. I don’t like being had unless I want to be had
I went to the doctor, got the patch and haven’t looked back in 6 years.
My best friend’s mother, a two-pack a day smoker, died from lund cancer. She was 48. I knew plenty of, well, old people, who got lung cancer, but the thought of dying when I was already 75 or 80 didn’t really scary. HTe thought of dying when I was under 50, when my (hypothetical) kids were still young, when I had never gotten a chance to retire and have my time be my own–that was unacceptable.
Also, in a weird way, quiting smiking was the only way I knoew to show my friend that I took her tragedy seriously. Often, when tragedy happens to other people we feel bad in a sort of vicarious way but it never seems quite real, and the person undergoing the tragedy knows this, I think, and that contributes to the feeling of lonliness. By giving up ciggaretes ( I smoked 2-3 packs a day) I hoped to show her that was real to me too.
Former half-pack-a-day man, about 4 years smoke-free after quitting cold turkey, checking in.
For me, it was a combination of a few things. The ridiculous price increase in smokes certainly was a factor. Hating the occasional coughing and wheezing fits. “Smoke hangovers” after a Saturday night of smoking a lot at a bar, were the worst.
Near the end, I would crave a cigarette, and feel worse after I smoked it. One Sunday after a heavy Saturday night of smoking, I realized that I’d made it into the evening without smoking that day, without really thinking about it. I decided to see how long I could go with it.
I won’t kid you, smokers. Quitting does really suck for a while. After a month or two, your all-the-time craving will change to jonesing at specific, good cigarette-times for you, like when at the bar or with your morning coffee.
Eventually, though, even those fade away. I don’t even think about smoking now. Never even crosses my mind.
You can get there!
An ex-SO and I quit at the same time when he went back into training to be a tri-athlete. He’s done several Iron Mans since. I miss it, especially when I’m under stress, but I can’t go back. It costs too much.
Three weeks ago my mom found out she has lung cancer. She quit smoking about 15 years ago.
I quit two weeks ago. It sucks. I LOVED to smoke. Still, I prefer to live, and it’s done wonders for Mom’s morale to know I’ve given it up.
It’s a pain, but it’s worth it.
I was in a friend’s house for dinner and resisting wrinkling my nose at the smell of her pets, when she told me “I thought you quit smoking.” I said “What gave me away?” She said, “I could smell it when you came in.” I hadn’t smoked since breakfast. That was just too embarassing, to be worse than her pets. I tossed the cigarettes when I filled up on the way home. The next morning I could suddenly smell the ashtry in my car, which never bothered me before. That clinched it.
I am coming up on 4 weeks of not smoking. I went cold turkey, no patches, no gum, nothing.
For me, it was the shortness of breath, the general lack of energy, the way I smelled, and the fact that I am 27 and had smoked for over half my life, having started at 13/14)?) and worked my way up to a pack and a half a day. Money was definately another factor. Those things are $3-4 a pack!! That meant I was spending around $5 a day to inhale stuff that was bad for me.
Something put it in my mind that it was time, and I’m glad it was.
I gave up a 3-pack-a-day habit cold turkey 13 years ago.
I had all the classic symptoms, shortness of breath, chest pains, wallet pains, wet ashtray smell, but what really finally made me do it was a friend dying of throat cancer.
The fact that my SO (now my wife) had quit just a few days earlier helped a lot, too.
It was the hardest thing I ever did, but if I hadn’t, I might not be here now.
Welllll, I smoked a cigarette every so often but after the bar exam, was up to a 1/2 pack a day.
I quit about 8 days ago. Why? Because I hated the smell of the ashtray and because I hated the way I knew that I had felt about smokers before I became one.
Also…I met a cute girl who hated smoking and I sure as hell wasn’t going to tell her I was a smoker!