Stopping Smoking

Dear people of AS3, this is a long post. If you need a distraction then this is for you. This is a story about my life as I deal with the effects of smoking. Quit smoking. Stay quit if you are on the journey now

reference to AS3 = https://www.facebook.com/groups/AS3onFB/

I can remember when distractions were essential to my quit; it was this group and those distractions. Many of them were simple games. others were sites that held my attention for a while. Others were interesting posts. All of the posts gave me the encouragement that I needed to continue my quit.

I quit smoking eleven years ago. I smoked for more than 60 years. Now I am paying the consequences of all of those nasty cigarettes, more than eighty thousand of them. My lungs have processed a Kilo of tar (2.2 pounds). That is about a liter (slightly more than quart) of pure tar. It’s actually more. That’s a conservative estimate for one pack a day.

My day begins with a prayer, mostly thanksgiving.. Next I disconnect the oxygen hose from my ventilator and connect it to the nasal hose. This hose is 40 feet long and comes from my oxygen concentrator that is running in the hallway. You can imagine how often that hose gets snagged by something or tangled. My home has been rearranged to minimize those problems. My ventilator is sort of like a CPAP machine, but it has variable pressure that is controlled by volume. Long ago, this used to require an iron lung, and later it became a tube down one’s throat. I can get by with this machine and a mask because I only need it when I am sleeping.

In the morning there is the usual personal care. Next I exercise my lungs with a spirometer. I do at least ten, sometimes more. Then I do two breathing treatments with a nebulizer. Now I can make a cup of coffee and surf The Internet. I still cook and do my laundry, but I cannot clean. Somebody comes and does that at no small expense. Shutting down at the end of the day is similar. Home Health comes to check me and my vitals weekly. This is done to keep me out of the hospital. Previously I was in the hospital because my capillary oxygen saturation was in the 60 percent range. Now, with the oxygen and other treatments, it stays in the 90 percent range.

If I am going for groceries I make sure that I have my small portable oxygen tank with the pulse mode regulator and the larger tank with the continuous flow regulator. I make sure I have spare tanks in the car, just in case. I put on the small device, go to the car, switch to the larger tank and begin the 30 minute journey to the grocery store. I won’t bore you with all of the steps required to get into the store, get a cart, shop, get stuff into my car and then out of the car and into my house. I have a grocery shopping day. That’s all for that day. Did I mention that smoking has robbed me of stamina.

I have a friend my age who continues to smoke, He is confined to a power wheelchair and has a long list of medical problems. I have another friend my age who hikes and bikes and swims. He never smoked.

Unbelievably, except for the breathing issues, my health is good. I feel good. I eat well. I have wonderful friends.

I have not been posting on AS3. I care about anyone trying to quit or keep a quit, but I could not keep up with you folks. My friend said for me to post when I can and not to worry about missed posts. I am now a “drive by” poster with a tremendous amount of respect for those who are consistently here.

Quit smoking. Stay quit if you are on the journey now. Smoking is a strong and horrible addiction. You can beat it only if you are totally committed. I do not believe that you can try to quit, You have to just quit. Use whatever method that works for you. If you fail, get up and continue but don’t give up.