My Body is a Toxic Wasteland

New Year’s resolution time is around the corner, and if you want to quit smoking, you’re not alone. I want to quit, too. And I have to admit, this isn’t easy to write about. Most days I am suffering in my car with a cigarette clenched between my lips after a long day or an early morning. Trying to give it up on days when I have to drive is the worst. I can only listen to “Take a Picture” on repeat so many times before I just want to throw my phone out of the car.

It’s not like I never knew how bad smoking is. In grade school, I was introduced to the dangers of smoking cigarettes by a health teacher who smoked what seemed like packs a day. She sported a well-earned husky tone, and would time her talks to videotapes of funny cartoons dancing around. That was a long long time ago…

I discovered smoking when I was in high school. I was terrible at math but good at art, and had lots of social anxiety. You probably knew someone just like me. I was anxious, and almost through the awkward self-conscious stages. The key word is almost. One morning, I was finally relieved of my anxiety through a cigarette, dreadfully.


Judge me. I’m gross, disgusting, nasty. No seriously, get it out of your system. 

So where did this leave me? I smoked. And smoked. And smoked some more. A couple of years ago, there were so many packs of cigarettes littering my car that a friend of mine took pictures of it. I wasn’t even embarrassed. I truly loved smoking cigarettes. And I truly loved the combo of cigs and alcohol. 

I don’t feel that way anymore. I smoke one or two butts a day with my coffee just to wake up, but when I drink, the smoking is endless. I am not as bad as I used to be. I can give myself that. But I quit then pick it back up … now I just want to move on from it.

I reached this conclusion after realizing that I couldn’t quit for anyone but myself. If you want to quit, but are doing it for someone else, then you need to come to terms with what YOU want. 

If you’re ready to quit with me, here is something to try:

Check out a Program. I found out about “Quit with  Brown University” when they placed an ad with Motif. I am interested in one of their programs, but they offer three different ones. All information and sign-up is available on their site: Check out a few details below. 

  1. Project PPT: Participants receive a free 6-week supply of nicotine patch and nicotine lozenges and six individual sessions with a smoking cessation counselor.
  1. Quit for Health: Quit Smoking Study for Female Smokers: This research study is a 12-week program with strategies to help women quit smoking, such as exercise and the nicotine patch.
  1. Project Get Fit to Quit: This is for people who are overweight and want to quit smoking with little or no weight gain.

You could go out and buy patches, gum, lozenges and more. But I’ve been there, tried it and I don’t find it effective. Programs seem like a good option for me at this point. I will follow up after I check out Brown’s program after the holidays. Cheers and good luck!