Aumegrad’s HoF ‘Speech’

KTC Logo PurpleMy oh my, 100 days!  100 days of battle!  2,400 hrs of war!  144,000 minutes of an unwavering decision to destroy something that was controlling me!  8,640,000 seconds of a keen focus to eradicate that which I at one time loved, but now I loathe!  14.3 weeks of on-again/off-again mental fog!  3.3 months of atypical sleep!  0.27 years of atypical bowel movements!  100 days of figuring out how to manage my rage!  But through this, 100 days of posting roll (really 95 for the next couple, was late to the posting party)!  100 days of texting fellow quitters my promise to quit!  100 days of determination of NOT letting my brother and sisters down!  100 days of erasing nicotine from my mind!  100 days of quit … 100 days of freedom!
As I sit here on day 100, I feel quite an accomplishment.  

I have always known the side effects of tobacco and though I was her slave, I always figured I would quit.  I always imagined a day when I could live my life, free from the hooks she had in me.  I always imagined this, but not sure I always believed it.  Regardless here I am, 100 days nicotine free … the air crisper, the food better tasting, the time spent with loved ones more meaningful, my words simply sweeter, … I could go on, but I won’t.  Bottom line is, life IS BETTER WITHOUT NICOTINE and before I get too carried away, I must remind myself of what 100 days truly is … and really what my addiction is.  You see, I made it to 100 days and I am damn proud, damn proud, but it is only a milestone.  It is a day that is to be celebrated by a greater degree than day 99, yet at a lessor degree than day 101.  See, a milestone is defined as “a significant point in development” and that is precisely what 100 days is, a singular point along a timeline of quit.  This timeline will ultimately end when I take my final breath.  I recall thinking early in my quit, “I’m sure I will get to some point and be able to have one dip, one cigar, or one cigarette”.  Such a foolish and naïve addict thought.  It was KTC that showed me the error of these thoughts.  It helped me realize that my quit was NOT a temporary or occasional quit, it was a definite quit, a FOREVER QUIT.  So again, on day 100, I look forward to day 101.  Tomorrow, I will look forward to day 102.  And while my sights are set forward, I will only look back in order to appreciate what I have today, freedom!

For a background of my addiction, reference my Intro.  Summarized, I was nicotine infused for 26 years.  A toxic mixture of cigarettes and dip from 12 years of age to 38.  Though my brain was mostly developed by age 12, there was still quite a bit of development that occurred beyond 12.  And all this cognitive development was nicotine rooted.  So, as I quit tobacco and retrain my brain, I am not only rewiring it, I feel I am effectively having to reset it, and it frankly hasn’t been easy.  Even on day 100, I have moments of feeling as if I am aimlessly floating through space, searching for something to fill that void left by nicotine.  I have no idea how long it will take to fill this void, but I can attest that it has started to improve these last couple weeks, so I know this void will fill.  Though my sleep has improved, there has been a ~1hr phase shift on my internal clock where I get dead tired and awaken ~1hr earlier.  Though my bowel movements have finally begun to normalize, it took a steady diet of orange juice and shredded mini wheats to get here and while they aren’t what they once were, they are now at least consistent.  These and other effects will continue to linger and/or alter me, but I like the new Aumegrad.  Encountering the wins outlined in my Intro continue to encourage me and strengthen my resolve.  As I have stated in many posts, I look forward to my daily promise and kicking nicotine in the tooth.  My resolve is much stronger than any grip she may have had on me.  I am quit … period!      

To the one reading this, still beholden to your deadly addiction …

I ask you this simple question, why not quit?  Seriously, what are the reasons?

Is it because of fear?  Fear is typically caused by the unknown.  KTC eliminates the unknown by outlining exactly what you will face.  Read this site thoroughly, “unknown” is no longer an excuse.  

Is it because of pride?  You are a grown man and noone’s gonna tell you what to do … blah, blah, blah.  If pride is an issue, ask yourself why you are here!  Get over yourself, quit!

Is it because you are afraid to deal with life head on?  Listen, I read a post in the Newbie Knowledge archive that essentially states that “Life will on occasion suck, things will happen, nicotine won’t change this”, it is a powerful post and so true (Click Here For Link). You CAN face life without nicotine.  I was worried about this also, but it is a lie that nicotine created in your brain … don’t believe it!  This should not be a quit deterrent.  

Is it to help in losing weight?  Give me a second while I gather my composure … better.  This has to be the dumbest reason to start dipping/smoking.  Energy In = Energy Out.  Lower your caloric intake or increase your caloric burn … exercise.  Don’t start this deadly habit to lose weight … get off your lazy … recomposing … there are too many healthy options for this to be an excuse.  

Is it because you are bored, or it helps with emotional issues?  Get a new nonlethal, nonrevolting hobby.  If you have emotional issues, nicotine doesn’t fix them, it masks them … and masks them up until the point the emotions boil over, then what?!?!  Don’t band-aid the issues, go seek help and get it resolved in a professional fashion.  Nicotine does NOTHING to fix this, NOTHING!   

Is it because you’re a pansy and don’t have your snuggle blanket handy?  Grow a pair Alice!

Ultimately, you can create any excuse in your head to start or continue dipping/smoking, but I ask you to ponder this … why continue to willingly do something that degrades your life and even the lives of those you love?  You are here because you have evaluated this very question.  There is no effective or logical excuse to NOT quit.  Now is the time to do so.  It will not get any easier tomorrow, regardless what your addict brain is telling you.  Just quit, MANY have done so before you and blazed through the excuses above.  Why can’t you?  Lace up your boot straps and kick nicotine where the “sun don’t shine”.  Follow the protocol on this board, it does work!  PM me, I intend to be around for a long time and will try to have shorter responses  :)

To ALL the shoulders I leaned on that got me here …

This quit did not occur from my singular effort, I know I could not have done this on my own.  So first and foremost, I thank Jesus Christ my Lord and Savior.  For through His blood, it saves me (Jn 3:16) and through His holy power, it strengthens me (Phil 4:13).  This quit did generate a significant amount of emotional distress which did include some depression and anxiety.  Fortunately, I knew I could cast these feelings unto the Lord and trust that He would get me through … and He faithfully did (1 Pet 5:7).  

Secondly, I must thank my family who had to endure my “quit crazy”. Rachel, Lily, John, and James (my Sons of Thunder), I love you all more than you will ever know and thank you for the daily reminder of why I quit!  

Thirdly, I want to thank autocorrect.  My spelling is horrendous, yet oddly comedic!  Too bad you won’t get to see it  ;D

Fourthly, I want to thank David’s sunflower seeds (stop hiding that low NaCl stuff), ALL the gum producers out there (you know who you are), Jack Links (even sasquatch couldn’t slow my quit), and Smokey Mountain (for the first couple weeks anyhow).

Last, but most definitely not least, I thank ALL my brothers and sisters in quit.  Though God provided the means, you have all been a beacon for me in my quit.  From the legends of quit to the bambinos, your stories and your words helped lighten my path forward.  Though much was written before I ever joined this site, I have taken every word as if it was written directly to ME and I thank you for this.  A big shout-out to my Rawkstars, you are all heros!  I thank you all for keeping your word and that for a given day, you were quit with me.  I especially want to thank those that went above and beyond roll call to text me EVERYDAY of their promise and sharing of experiences.  This goes out to Croak, BBQ, Kickin (most the time  ;)), Oliver and Cap (  data-recalc-dims=:(“>).  Outside of texts and roll, there were many others that aided my quit.  Perhaps too many to add, but I want to especially thank Athan for your words of encouragement.  Your perspective helped align a few important things in my life.  I appreciate all of you guy’s dedication in seeing this puppy through!  And yes, I did thank Cap.  Regardless of his cave, like so many others have attested for themselves, Cap was also the first to reach out to me.  Cap was the first to breakdown my barrier and convince me to send him my digits.  Seriously, I never give out my info to ANYTHING … I don’t even have a Facebook page.  Through his enthusiasm and even through his cave, Cap strengthened my quit and I look forward to supporting him upon his return! 

Brothers and Sisters, we quit together.  I’ll close this verbose thesis with a simple thought that I have frequented throughout my quit: If I never again place tobacco in my mouth, I will never cave and will forever be quit.  This may seem obvious and perhaps a bit trivial, but for me it is profound.  I have complete control over this quit.  If I ever cave, it is only because I allowed it … no other reason.    

I choose to quit, therefore I am quit.  

So, brothers and sisters, let’s continue with our quits.  Let’s continue posting roll day after day, week after week, month after month, and year after year.  Let’s continue to support each other and those that need it.  And most importantly, let’s “rawk” on with our bad selves!

Aumegrad (celebrating today but looking forward to tomorrow!)

NOTE: This piece written by KillTheCan.org forum member Aumegrad

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