2007 HOF Speeches

Breaking the Chain of Addiction – My Free-At-Last Speech

free-at-last avatarI was a nicotine addict, a slave to the can and I was slowly killing myself.

Until I decided to kill the can!
That was the day I was set free!

Free from the receding gum lines.
Free from the fast developing cavities.
Free from the muscle spasms and many health problems.
Free from the can itself.
Free from the bad breath.
Free from getting mouth cancer.
Free from wasted money.
Free from the disgusting spitoons.
Free from tobacco stained teeth.
Etc., etc., etc.,

I am now free-at-last!

My experience with tobacco started when I was 13 which was about 10 years ago. My brother offered me a pinch of Kodiak wintergreen. It wasn’t but a drop of tobacco but the affects where nearly powerful enough to put me out cold. I became lightheaded, dizzy and nauseous. I felt like I was going to die. I promised right then and there that I would never use tobacco again. Well, in about one year I was a full blown dipper. I dipped whenever I could and wherever I could.

I would spend 1/2 hour in the bathroom just so I could have a dip. My parents thought I was having problems spending so much time holed up in the restroom. I would celebrate when the parents would leave. I would panic when I my can would be getting low. I would bike 4 miles to the nearest store to buy a can. I still remember doing that on a Sunday afternoon only to find the store was closed. I was completely out of chew, four miles from home, in the sweltering summer heat. I WAS PISSED! I was so pissed I felt like crying. I could never go one evening without dip. And I was only 15! That was sad!

But I continued to chew. I chewed while driving. I chewed on the toilet. I chewed while fishing. I chewed while hunting. I chewed while working and playing, through pain and sorrow. I knew I needed to quit, but I didn’t even try. I always told myself I’m not addicted I’ll quit sooner or later. It felt good to dip and tasted good too. By the age of 21 I began having health problems. I would get muscle spasms in my neck and back. My sinuses would cause me trouble continuously. In a 3 year period I suffered from a Bulging disc in my back, sinusitis 3 times, knee pain, mono, and depression. My Grizzly would always calm my nerves and get me through all these problems. (Although I now believe my Grizzly was the main cause of these problems) I would suffer from headaches, sore tongue, receding gum lines, lots and lots of cavities and bad breath. I visited my dentist for an annual check up and he found 14 cavities in one visit. I was killing myself slowly but surely.

So I began trying to quit. I tried cold turkey. It lasted 2 days. I tried the nicotine gum and that lasted 3 days. I did a survey trial on the QuitKey. They paid me $30 for the trial and I used that money to buy me more chew. In other words, the QuitKey was the biggest joke. I tried the Nicotine patches but I could never quit for more than 3 days. Until the last time I tried them I committed myself and got past the first week. After the first week I knew I would need some support so I Googled “quit chewing support” and I found www.killthecan.org. I clicked the link and for the rest of the day I browsed the site. I joined this community and read and read and read. I posted roll pretty much every day. I bitched and moaned. Cried and laughed. Every time I would be going through a funk or something I would let everyone know how I felt and instantly they were reaching out words of encouragement. I would have never made it to 100 days quit without these people!

I thank all of you from the bottom of my heart. You have been a huge help. Even though I didn’t know anyone of the people on here for the first 100 days, it was still the accountability that kept me from caving. I want to thank God for creating men and women with bright minds, who unselfishly spent their own time and money to run this site. I thank the many administrators and moderators on here for what you all have done. I want to thank the entire December 2007 group of PinchGrinchers for your assistance it times of trial, and many, many others for helping me. Also I appreciate the opportunity of being able to help the newbies to this site. Because in doing so I have helped and benefited myself more! It has been great!

If you use tobacco and would like to quit, then this is the site for you! In here you will get Top-Notch support from hundreds of people who have been in the same shoes you are. Many fine people who have gone through all the stages of quitting. Fellow Human Beings that have used tobacco for more than half their lifetime. Fellow quitters that have been quit for up to a thousand days or more.  If you need help, encouragement, inspiration, or anything else we are here to help and will help. All you have to do is ask.

I know that there is no possible way I could have gotten through the past 100 days without the help of my fellow quitters. These people on here will unselfishly devote their precious time to help a brother out who is suffering. People like Chewie, Loot, WhoDey, 48, SOS, JulieJan, Mij, guapo, (just to name a few) and all the other brothers and sisters on here. It has been a very emotional, exciting, hilarious 100 days, and there is no way I would opt to go through the same 100 days again. There is just no way. I am quit for good. I am FREE-AT-LAST!

Now, throw that tobacco crap away and join the fine group of quitters here at ktcforum.org. You will be glad you did.

Get past that first week of quitting and things will improve dramatically. I have found that since I quit tobacco, food has tasted better, my gums don’t hurt, my self-image has improved greatly and my outlook on life has never been better!

Thanks again to KillTheCan.org and to everyone involved for allowing me to become free-at-last!

Thank You, God Bless, and Merry Christmas to All!

Steve
(free-at-last!)

NOTE: This piece written by KillTheCan.org forum member free-at-last!

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