My journey to the HOF begin on August 4, 2013. My initiation into the club of nicotine addition likely started around the winter of 1999. I was a wrestler in high school, and that came with a lot of cutting weight. A lot of guys would chew gum, eat jolly ranchers, or do whatever they could to keep their mouths somewhat hydrated or fool their body into thinking they were eating. A friend of mine suggested that I have a dip. Not thinking it through with $8,000 of metal in my mouth (genius), I put my first dip in. it was amazing. Within a few minutes, I felt a tingling sensation in my bottom lip; it burned and my gum ached a bit. For some odd reason though, I liked the pain. Moments later, I started to feel dizzy and oddly relaxed. I leaned back on the bus ride home from a tournament, and didn’t realize it was really the beginning of my ride to a shameful addiction. I made it through highschool following my own personal rule of no more than one per day. That is because I thought I could keep control. I kept going through college, and eventually one of the best things happened for me in my addition – I dug a pocket. Now I could have a dip in and virtually noone would know. How fantastic is that? My desire for satisfy my temptations no longer had to be in solitude. I could now dip at work, in school, or anywhere! Aces…
Then one day, my parents find my can. I still lived at home in undergrand and also worked at the same place as my mom. She broke down in tears and begged me to stop. My parents showed me pictures that we see on the website or online. I told them I’d quit. I left the house, headed to hang out with a few friends, and packed me one to enjoy the satisfaction that nothing bad could ever happen to me. So enough about how I got to where I was. Fast forward a few years to 2013. I arrived to a point in life where I would gag when I put a dip in. It would make me physically ill to have one in for more than 10 minutes. My addiction told me that I just had to fight through it. My ex-fiance had told me to quit, and warned me that she wasn’t going to feed me when I didn’t have a jaw anymore. Silly woman. Anyways, I decided to come clean. I’m lucky in that my conclusion wasn’t the result of some rockbottom heartache or medical scare. Something finally went off in my mind that suggested to me that I was a serious addict and I had to stop.
I quit a few times this year. Something bad would happen at work, and I’d go straight to the gas station to pick up a can so that I could have the right tools to focus and succeed. What an idiot. In August 2013, I found this website. I played around a bit while looking at pictures, reading stories of death and self destruction, and enjoying the crispness that is Skoal Wintergreen. Again, genius. I enter the chatroom, take my dip out, and confessed to needing help. I was tired of dipping and I couldn’t quit. There were a few individuals in there who go so pumped about the prospect of me quitting. I likely made a comment about not being sure. I was then corrected in that it wasn’t something to think about, that I needed to quit right then. I then had to post roll, which hilariously was difficult to figure out. That was one of my favorite parts about this site. No matter what day I was on, someone was really excited for me and proud to quit with me that day. Amazing support and brotherhood here.
Day 1 – I am a total stud.
Day 2 – I was just kidding, I need a dip. Lived in the chat room.
Day 3 – Shooting pains up and down my arms. I can’t focus at work. I’m physically ill, nothing is right about this.
Fast forward a few more days and I lived in the chatroom. It was quite frankly the only thing that kept me from going to a gas station. I wanted nothing more than a can.
Day 15 – Fog seems to be lifting? Pains are going away? I got this.
Day 25 – Whoops, just kidding, crave crave crave crave. I head back to the chatroom for a few more days to gain support of my new brothers.
Day 50 – Never thought I’d make it this far. This is pretty easy.
Day 65 – Woke up thinking I had dipped…just a dream. Felt remorse and guilt all day. Oh, and Dabean won’t leave me alone about missing various weekends for roll. Thanks for always riding me when I needed it.
Day 80 – I can hear the train.
Day 95 – Loving life, randomly want a dip still. However, I’ve trained myself to get to the website and find solace.
Day 100 – I board the train with a bottle of Laphroig. I join a group of brothers that have made it this far, one day at a time.
Day 108 – Back in the chatroom, after 8 days of being told to write my speech, I sit here in front of you all now.
While none of this made sense and is likely not a very good HOF Speech, I want to close with a few thoughts to pass along to new members because you are the ones that matter here:
1. When the members tell you that you are not here by accident; it is a true statement. You are not. You are here, because today is the day that you must quit.
2. Posting roll is important. Making the promise to the other members that you are quitting with is a sacred oath. On your word, you are electing to not give in to your addicted ways. Make the promise, stay strong, stay quit. Your life depends on it.
3. The chatroom is probably my favorite tool on this website – outside of Pinched that is. Owned. You can’t buy a can if you are in the chatroom. I repeat, you can’t buy a can if you are in the chatroom. If you are craving, if you are in trouble, get to the chat room.
4. The reason we say One Day at a Time, is because that is your goal. Don’t overwhelm yourself with saying that you have to quit something that has been a crutch for the majority of your day for the last significant portion of your life for the next 50 years. Just say you aren’t going to use today. Tomorrow, you will make the decision to not use then.
Within my November 13 group, we have had turmoil and trouble during our HOF month. However, when the dust settles, we will all emerge even stronger. One day at a time, we will continue in our fight. I pledged to stay on the train until 200. I’m excited to work towards that goal because I cannot express how awesome I feel not being a slave to nicotine.
I invite anyone and everyone to join me in fighting the daily battle with nicotine. PM, email me, find me in chat; it doesn’t matter. I want to give back as those that have helped me.
With that, I’ll see you all in roll tomorrow.