It has now been 15 days since I stopped smoking. And it continues to be – a BATTLE. I’ve lost track of the number of times in recent months that I first quit but then after a while started “cheating” and sneaking – until the deception [guilt/nerves/fear of being caught] started to drive me crazy and I just gave in to the fact that I’d failed and had to try again. There were weeks when I was rationalizing one or two smokes a day, thinking I could do that and still consider myself a nonsmoker. Ha, until one or two a day turned into many more…. and in the meantime finding that smoking a few a day was simply drawing out and exacerbating the withdrawal symptoms …until I was just a total, awful mess and the whole thing was just STUPID and UGLY and DISTRESSING. Sheesh! Enough already!

I am coping I guess. No more cheating; I threw my leftover smokes in the garbage this time. As hard as it has always been for me to actually throw cigarettes away (erroneously thinking that I can resist the temptation and want to keep some for “emergency” purposes), it makes things considerably easier. You can’t yield to temptation when there is no temptation available and lying around! And I should mention that there really should be no excuse this time because even my sister has now quit. And that makes a world of difference; I don’t have to see her smoke, or smell it, or see ashtrays or her cigarettes every time I go outside (or hunt for them if I can’t find them when she’s gone, like a disgusting, crazed addict!) or resent her and be depressed because she can smoke and I cannot. None of that now, we are both in it together. And as crazy as that can be with both of us in our respective withdrawal stages, at least we are on the same path. THIS IS GOOD.

However, I still don’t seem to be experiencing the amount of commitment that I have had in the past. I don’t know why. I keep asking myself, am I not stronger than the chipmunk????chipmunk

Also, with both my sister and I dealing with nicotine withdrawal at the same time, it does bring challenges in terms of getting along – without screaming at each other. But hopefully we can each keep our perspective.

One thing about nicotine withdrawal, there is also such a sense of surrealism with everything. For instance, the other morning on the news I hear a story about London skyscrapers built of reflective material that is reflecting the sun and burning things (and people) on the ground. Wouldn’t you think they would’ve thought of that before they built the darn thing??? That just cracks me up, it’s absurd!

And the same day, my son brings up the issue of “spontaneous combustion” and tells me that he has heard what causes it; it’s simply a case of static electricity and farting (methane). Makes sense to me, but how unlucky could a person get???  😀

So life is weird these days. To cope with my quitting, I have mostly been lying on the couch dozing and ruminating – cooking up these fantasy stories in my head. And now I think, all the times in my life when I’ve found myself doing this, I wonder why on earth do I not ever write it down? Well I suppose because these stories/fantasies so often seem just self-indulgent fluff and not much point to them other than to explore some kind of setting or scenario. But certainly that could be material for a real story, couldn’t it?

Yesterday I was annoyed by how windy it’s been; it’s so bright outside and these violent winds – I do not like wind, although I think it’s fairly typical of this time of year. So anyway I started imagining what type of environment I might want to be in to avoid certain kinds of weather. And I found myself picturing this castle in the woods, big, deep woods with giant trees, and to live in this tower, living in the bottom part, it would be cool and shady. And living up high you’d be above the trees and couldn’t see the wind – stuff like that. I imagined moving up or down in the towers depending on the time of year and then it continued to develop from there into some other, earth-like planet, with family units living isolated – like my “castle” scenario, which then developed a spaceport without my intervention and it just grew from there. “I” became a young girl whose family had lived in this castle and ran everything for thousands of years. And this whole world developed in my head. And when this kind of thing happens, I often find myself trying to solve questions about population control, food supplies, technology, etc., etc., and even questions relating to the gene pool and this idea of these “family units” where so many would be related in some way to each other (and the founding family/ies) and other reasonable considerations. And I guess what I have been doing is what fantasy/scifi writers describe as “world building” without my even realizing it, although I have been doing that for as long as I can remember in some fashion. I SHOULD BE WRITING THESE THINGS DOWN!!!

And if these “scenarios” have no perceived plot or purpose yet, it doesn’t mean there isn’t potential. Perhaps I just have never been patient enough to get it down without knowing where it’s going or how to get there. Maybe I just didn’t seriously consider the idea that I might be able to write real stories. Or maybe I just haven’t yet found anything compelling enough to want to follow through with it. But I don’t know. I have started things at times, but they never go anywhere. But all this could change. If I consider this all to be writing practice, then I could perhaps be motivated. I really do wish I would spend more time writing – and not just in my journal, although I imagine there is probably tons of potential material in these tons of pages, stacks of notebooks. Something to consider…

Meanwhile, I feel like crap, floating in a pile of mush.

So it goes.  (Onward and Upward…)

changes(This post has been revised from the post previously titled “Update and posted on 9/7/13.”)
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