Where to begin when reflecting back not only on 100 days quit but also the previous 24 years of slavery. Unlike most members of KTC, I never once in 24 years stopped, attempted to stop, or even took a break outside of a 3 day stretch in a sterile hospital room. Matter of fact, the first day I was able to go outside to rehab I happily loaded one up. It was more than a part of my life, it was like breathing or eating or shitting. In retrospect, the addiction level is fucking frightening as hell! I’m a smart man, knew the health consequences, yet never once considered stopping. What a hold that shit had upon my weak mind!! The night I dropped the can in the dumpster started a revelation and revival in my life.
The journey to 100 days quit has been one of ups and downs. The two constants in this stretch are 1. I am quit and 2. The DOG house, KTC, and a few close friends in both have been there for me morning, noon, or night. When I first crept around KTC, I kinda shrugged off all the talk of brotherhood and accountability. Shit, I couldn’t keep a promise to my wife, kids, parents, or closest friends outside of this band of misfits….why the hell would I feel any improved sense of accountability here?
A few days into my self imposed quit, I joined by finding the DOG house and posting a “help, how do I do this roll thing”. It happened to be right in the middle of one of our famous Shitnados, ripe with a few members of the DOG house battling some well intentioned Vets. It was something I had never seen, and frankly entertained me and kept the Nic withdrawal out of my mind for a few hours!! As soon as fellow DOGS caught on to this struggling quitter, they jumped to my assistance with advice and a caring attitude. That night I posted for the first time, and haven’t looked back since.
Each day I gained a newfound respect and love for the two words above…Brotherhood and Accountability. I can’t let you guys and gals down. Period. End of discussion. I make that promise before embarking on my day and push any thoughts of Nic out of my mind. Why? Because I am conditioned now to flat demand that I remain accountable to all of you and the hurt to our brotherhood would tear me apart. Therefore, it isn’t even an option.
I will always be an addict. Days 20-74 really reinforced that for me. Some say physical withdrawal is the worst, others the mind games. For me, it was the overwhelming anxiety of this stretch. I had always been a confident person, loaded of course with Nic. Not only does severe anxiety blow ass, but it was something I had never experienced. I fought through minute by minute, finding therapy in conversations with JPAnthony and Quittolive. Further into my quit, an old grizzled Ohioan Wastepanel took me under his wing and has been instrumental in keeping me grounded and focused. Vets like Pab, Kramer, and even you Norm, all have a fond place in my quit success. Thank you Chewie and crew for building this support network and giving so much of your time to helping others. You are Nobel prize winners in my book!! Thank you, from the depths of my existence. You saved my life. As well, I found a few younger quitters fighting the same battle, and it was therapeutic to pass on advice (even though I was a fucking train wreck inside!).
At day 74, it was like a light switch. I am an addict, but I now realized an addict free of any chains binding me down. The sky is the limit. The immense mental calm John Polito describes on his WhyQuit.com page is what I now experience each day. I am so grateful for this feeling of comfort. I am an addict, but I now have the tools to win the battle each and every day. My wish is for every nicotine addict to work hard enough to feel this clarity. In the meantime, I post my promise EDD ODAAT, and completely rule out nicotine for the day. NAFAR!!
Quit on you house of miscreants…I will see you on roll tomorrow +1