I buried my dad last Sunday. He didn’t pass recently, actually he died on April 10th. This past weekend was the first time our family was able to get together, so we finally set him free back in his hometown. It was a beautiful and emotional day, and now I’m able to post my HOF speech.
You see, April 10th was my 100th day. I was in Southern California with my family, enjoying my first family vacation in 15 years where I wasn’t climbing the walls for a dip. Until my Day 1, I was a ninja, keeping this awful addiction in the closet, so even a short vacation was hell. Here I was, actually happy to be with my family and feeling proud of myself for sticking it out. My dad passed that morning from complications from COPD, not a fun way to go. He was a 3 pack a day smoker for 50 years. The heart attack didn’t stop him, nor the triple bypass, nor the bronchitis. When I was a child, I always tried to get him to stop, cutting his cigarettes in half, hiding them, trying to stick rubber bands in them so they taste like shit when he burned them. Nothing worked. I was so anti-tobacco, until for some reason I tried to put this shit in my mouth one day in my late 20s. It was a great buzz, so once I got past the sickness, I tried it again, of course I can quit any time, right? Sure pal. Pretty soon, I wasn’t doing it for the buzz, I was just doing it to avoid being an asshole. I said I’d quit when I got married, when I had my first child, when I had my second child. We all know how that goes. 15 years later, I finally had enough, but the cost was pretty severe. I didn’t do so well at a couple of jobs, since I wasn’t quite the model employee, disappearing for 15 minutes at a time to feed the demon. Nor was I the model husband or father, always finding excuses to get out for a while. It had gotten to the point where I had pretty much written off any desire to quit. But then I found KTC and my Apes, so thank you all for saving my life.
So, to the nic devil, I say you are losing the battle, and will continue to lose. I know you took my dad on a day when I would be celebrating a victory over you. I know it was planned. I know you come after us in our darkest times. But it did not go as you had hoped. All it did was galvanize my decision to say no to you, you couldn’t even stop me from posting that day! Saying no to you has allowed me to thrive. Since my Day 1, I’ve started a business, repaired my marriage and family relationships, just been a better person in general. I’m still saying no, one day at a time.
So to all you new and old quitters, keep it up. There is nothing more important than quitting, and it will change your life in ways you do not even realize.