Nichol gets personal about her smoking habit

Today’s post is part of a series by Nichol. If you would like to read her previous posts, please go to the categories menu to the right and choose Nichol from the drop-down menu.


I cannot tell a lie. I like smoking. I like to smoke in the morning with my coffee. I like to smoke when I get home after a long day at work. I like to smoke at work when things are off the wall and I need a break. Smoking gives me something to do at a party when I don’t know anyone. It gives me something to do with my hands when I am anxious. I gives me a reason to step outside when someone if boring me, or irritating me.

Lately, I have been considering the idea of turning into a non‐smoker.

My cigarette affair began when I was 13, 18 years ago (yikes). I remember it like it was yesterday. I was at a slumber party and we were hanging out in front of Ricardo’s (an old pool hall/pizza joint that closed a long time ago) and my friends and I, very worldly 8th graders, were trying to figure out how to get inside Ricardo’s and get some cigarettes out of the vending machine. I was a novice smoker, but my friends had already been smoking for a while. I didn’t tell them I was new to the game. I didn’t want to be the loser!

We met some cute older boys, smokers, and they gave us some cigarettes. That was the beginning of the end for me. I was cool! I was a rebel! I was one of the “bad kids” at school. I did (and still do) live in Gilbert. Although it’s commonplace now, it wasn’t something the respectable kids did. I never did claim to be a lady…

Well now, I am 31 and getting all healthy and junk. Why not take that next step? I have always had a reason why now is not a good time. Teaching stresses me out. Social work stresses me out. I can’t do my thesis without a cigarette. As soon as I graduate… As soon as I find a new job… As soon as the weekend is over…

But what reasons do I have now? I can’t really think of another reason to continue smoking other than, I like it. I’m doing my healthy thing, eating well, working out. Why should I ruin all this hard work with wrinkly skin and yellow teeth/nails and less money and emphysema and lung cancer and throat cancer and low birth weight (for any future fetuses)?

I do know myself well enough to know that it’s not going to happen tonight or next week or a month from now. I know that for me, changing that smoking behavior will be the same as changing my eating behavior. It’s going to be a gradual change that will end with me being nicotine free. Wouldn’t that be nice?

I want to know if any of you out there have quit smoking. How did you do it? How long did it take you? And most importantly, how much money will I save and will it be enough for a pair of Louboutins?


2 responses to this post.

  1. My husband has been trying to quit smoking for longer than I’ll tell you. Having said that, he is finally cigarette-free (yah), though he’s now onto Prime Time cloves, which are nicotine free but still allow him the physical sensation of smoking (i.e., the physical act of putting something in his mouth). This is his next vice to overcome, and he’s doing REALLY well. He’s tried Chantix, patches, lozenges (these were what allowed him to finally quit), hypnotics, etc. Most of them worked short-term. He’s now finally in the mindset that he NEEDS to quit, which is (in my opinion) why this option finally worked for him. I’m so proud of him. I know you can do it too. There is a program through AZ that will help you, with guidance from former smokers via a phone line as well as providing you with your choice of lozenges, patches, etc. free of charge. GOOD LUCK! I can’t wait to see the follow-up post. Regarding the money you’ll save….consider opening an account and putting all “smoking” money into that account. Only withdraw if you have to. This should help you realistically see where your money is going. It’s crazy how much it adds up…

  2. Posted by Lisa on 3 February 2011 at 08:17

    Hi Nichol –

    I’m not a smoker myself, but I wanted to share this article that really moved me on the topic of quitting:

    Good luck to you!

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