Like the title says…I am you!
I began 30 years ago when I was my son’s age. I took a small chew with a friend after one of our baseball games. It didn’t make me look or feel older..just sick and shitty. By the end of that first experience I was already an addict but I didn’t know that yet. I grew up in sunny Orange County California and enjoyed all that it had to offer. I surfed, played football and baseball and began chewing regularly. It became so much a part of my everyday life that it blended into the background. My friends and family knew that I did it but rarely said anything to me. I used chew in the fire academy, paramedic school and college. It was my study buddy and never left my side. After being in the fire service for over 20 years, it was a fraternity on every level…including having a chew on you at all times.
I live outside of Seattle and could not imagine a better life up here! I run, bike, fish, crab and enjoy everything about where I call home. I came to KTC out of desperation. I knew I needed to quit, I wanted to quit but I found every excuse and lie I could come up with. Too stressful of a time, I’ll quit after Seahawks season, after the Mariners season, after my soccer season. I lied and never took accountability for my actions on this matter. KTC allowed me to be me but with strict parameters. It took me awhile to learn the ropes but thanks to vets that were patient and reassuring, I finally got it! I posted roll everyday and lived the way they did! It required me to change my behaviors, my triggers and post roll. I eventually gathered a few digits from fellow quitters and we kept tabs on each other.
I am like you, I am a loving husband, a father of 3 amazing kids and a professional in my field. I love life and want to keep living it! I struggle everyday with my quit and will continue to struggle everyday until I die. But like the vets told me early on, keep posting, read incessantly, learn about your addiction and hold yourself and others accountable. I was an average quitter, maybe even less. I didn’t participate in alot of discussion or boards but I DID post and read a lot of posts. It helped me more than you can imagine. So be like me in this case, commit to your quit, stay positive and roll on!
There will be tough days ahead, nobody denies that! I realized that for the first time in 30 years of chewing, I did this for me and nobody else…that’s why I will stay quit! Thank you to all my fellow quitters and to the vets that guided me! Special thank you to PatrickG for your patience and showing me the way…you’ll never be forgotten!