The Difference

400 days ago I quit smoking.
Not that I’m counting or anything.

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The amount of likes, comments and support was actually kind of surprising. I knew that everyone would be happy about my decision. I mean let’s be honest, cigarettes make you smell terrible, feel terrible, and look terrible. But I was still surprised by how quickly my phone was blowing up with alerts and congratulations.  Now that I’ve quit I actually feel a twinge of sadness when I see people smoking, especially young people. To be addicted to something that has absolutely no positive effect really sucks.
I have seen those people (very few) that can take a puff of a cigarette when they’re drinking, or in a social situation and that’s as far as their habit goes.
They take a puff or maybe two and then they’re done and won’t touch another cigarette for a month, maybe a year.
I envy those people.
They don’t have anything clinging to them and luring them to smoke packs and packs of cigarettes. They don’t have some voice telling them that it makes them feel better, that it curbs their appetite, that it’s a stress reliever. They just take a puff and usually make a face because they then recall how gross it is, and don’t take another. I am not like that. I have taken a puff of a cigarette since I quit and all I wanted to do was smoke the entire thing, and then ask for another. I didn’t do this but I wanted to, I really, really wanted to.
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The support continues!

Now I knew the next thing I was going to give up would not get this much attention.
I’ve made it 34 days.

Smoking makes you smell terrible, feel awful, and look bad.
Alcohol has all these same effects on me.
Here’s the main difference.
Everyone in the world knows you shouldn’t smoke.
Everyone is in agreement, even people who still smoke.
Alcohol is not universally bad for everyone.
But it is bad for me.
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To be honest, I was surprised this got 26 likes.
I thought I knew the people that would be supportive and I could count them on one hand. I am very glad that more than 4 people were supporting me.
But there is obviously a dramatic difference from the decision to quit smoking and the decision to quit drinking.
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I thought that quitting drinking would be easier than smoking.
I smoked a pack a day.
I did not drink every day.
When I quit smoking I turned into a raging psycho for a while.
On the weekends I went crazy, taking shots every time I wanted a cigarette, and complaining about how I didn’t really want to quit, etc.
At one point my husband even told me he was considering going to the gas station up the street and buying me a pack of cigarettes because I was driving him crazy. (haha)
I quit cold turkey!
(why do they call it that anyway?)
My dad and sister quit at the same time and I had a lot of support which helped a lot!

Alcohol has been WAY different.
The first week was this awesome high I’ve never felt.
Like I was free!
That high went away and I’ve started to crave sugar.
Ice cream, candy bars, zebra cakes, and the list goes on and on.
(so much for cutting out calories by ditching alcohol)
I get frustrated and angry and I don’t know what to do.
I can’t smoke a cigarette, and I can’t have a glass of wine.
I actually have to sit with my feelings and figure out why they’re there and what to do with them.
This has been the hardest (and the strangest) part of all.
This quit will be forever.
There is a voice just like the one with cigarettes that’s trying to lure me back to drinking. It’s telling me that I can’t have fun without it, that I need it to feel better, that it’s a stress reliever and that it helps with anxiety, awkwardness and discomfort.
It tells me that other people don’t want to hang out with me when I’m sober, that I’m not as fun, and that it makes the people I’m around uncomfortable (it might be right about the last one).
I do not want other people to quit because I am.
I do not sit and watch everyone else with judging eyes and feel like I am better because I am sober.
I had to quit for me because I could feel it dragging me down and becoming bigger than I could handle.
And like I said before, it is sad to see a young person addicted to something that has absolutely nothing positive to offer them.

I plan to continue to write about how this journey goes. This journey to forever. I might even share awesome non-alcoholic drink recipes, and motivational quotes. This is my life now and I am proud of it. I am free.

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4 thoughts on “The Difference

  1. Congratulations Adrienne! Just take baby steps. I quit drinking this year and it was hard. Your true friends with love you even if you don’t drink or smoke. Your family will love you regardless.

  2. I am writing to you from Mexico because I think you are AA-mazing and I am so glad that you are making these positive changes in your life. You will not regret it, and I am behind you 110%!! Love you and I am SO proud of you!! In solidarity and with love & support! xoxo

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