I reached 100 days ten days ago. I waited till day 110 to “unveil” this little gem because today is my official 100th day off the nasty (I used the gum for the first ten days). In the inevitable pissing contest of “who dipped longer” that sometimes squirms around this site amongst newbies, I would probably certainly lose. I dipped and smoked, but predominantly dipped the skoal straight (I got champagne taste!) for about 10 or 11 years, with the last five since college being my dip-a-thon glory days. I wouldn’t say I loved it as much as I needed it. It was a delicious little treat to reward myself with every time I could come up with a reason. Such reasons included eating dinner, waking up, taking a twosie (sorry gross), sitting at the comp, turning on the TV, etc. I’d say with a short list of daily achievements like that, I really deserved some reward!
As the years went by, I knew the day would come when I’d have to bite the bullet and give it up. But at the same time, as the years went by, I started to wonder if I’d ever be capable of quitting. In fact, now that I’ve quit, I’m still not sure I was ever capable in the first place. See, in a way I cheated, because about 125 days ago, I woke up with a weird feeling in my throat. Now I don’t know about the rest of you degenerate’s, but if you were like me, you played doctor just about everyday and diagnosed yourself with every mouth infection/disease/cancer you could muster up over at Webmd.com So as usual, I put on my lab coat and stethoscope and convinced myself that I was the proud owner of throat cancer. In the back of my mind, I was sure it was just a scratched or sore throat, but the stupid thing didn’t go away. I started to go into panic mode, imagining what it would be like to tell everyone I’d ever snuck a dip around that I was dying because I secretly dipped all this time. “Yeah, grandma, see I’ve been..uh..dipping..and ..yeah..I..uh..got some cancer and…what?..oh, dip is like this nasty brown tobacco stuff..” Didn’t sound fun. My grandma would probably be so pissed.
So, I took action and decided it was time to temporarily quit so that when I was inevitably diagnosed, I would be able to say something like “Wow, and right after I decided to quit! What bad fortune!” Yes…I’m sad to say I did think idiotic things just like this. The odd thing was, this feeling in my throat didn’t go away, and after 14 days of quit, I finally went to the doctor (who gave me a quit-dip high five) and got myself checked out. Tests were all negative and they said I probably had heartburn. The feeling really didn’t go away until around day 50 and in hindsight, I couldn’t be any more thankful to that heartburn or whatever it was. It made me realize what would happen if I continued to use the nasty beast.
Now I can sit here and tell you all day that dip is gross, bad, disgusting, irresponsible, etc and it would be true, but I’d be lying if I said I didn’t miss it almost daily. That is probably mud I’ll have to trudge through for a long time. All the same, it was absolutely the best decision of my life. I don’t think I’ve ever felt better about myself. I also know for a fact that I couldn’t have done this without three things in my life.
- God – I used to pray all the time that God would give me a reason to quit because I didn’t think I cared enough about myself. I feel confident that my little lump was just that.
- Girl – My beautiful, wonderful girlfriend, who wouldn’t give in when I told her repeatedly to leave me alone about the dip and who put up with me through all the seeds, whining, and getting fat.
- KTC – I know for a fact that this site was absolutely pivotal in me accomplishing this feat. Signing roll with the Feb ’08 Iron Quitters was and still is the biggest part of my day. We’re typically a quiet group but to the eight or so of you who posted nearly everyday, that really made the difference for me. Thanks.
In a way, post-100 days feels a little like college graduation. You can’t wait for it, then you get there and have a party. Then, you have to move on and continue life. Nothing momentous to really look forward to. No, as R.Kelly speaks so fondly of, “afterparty”. The only difference with quitting dip is that everyday, I know I accomplished and am currently accomplishing something that thousands of others around this country would love to do, whether they’d admit it or not. Thinking about that gives me a feeling that is not really comparable to anything I’ve felt before. I’ll call that feeling the afterparty!
See you all on the second floor!