“I don’t care how many awards, trophies, educational degrees, or the amount of money you have earned, if you have quit a nicotine addiction, that is the greatest accomplishment of your life.” ~ Anonymous
I was a 14 year old freshman in high school and I had the entire world in front of me. However, at that age the entire world meant sports, zits and peer pressure. All three took me by storm, the only problem is, the peer pressure took me more than 16 years and THOUSANDS of dollars to QUIT for good. I’m pretty damn lucky I still have my face!
The words “thank you” are not enough to express my gratitude towards my family, both in real life and all the guys on KTC. Without all of you, and I mean ALL of you, I’d still be chewing two cans a day and justifying it any time someone questioned why I did it. If the same person questioned me or wondered why I was dipping, I’d have more than one excuse for them. I had excuses stock piled, because that what dippers do, they find ways to make chewing ok.
To my beautiful soon (not soon enough) to be wife, Stacy. I obviously didn’t know you when I was 14 and a “beginner” in the dipping world. However, I truly believe we met during the climax (chewing two plus cans a day easily) of my chewing for a reason…So I could quit! Do you all want to know an awesome secret about spousal support? From our stand point, I was able to quit because Stacy NEVER ONCE said “You have to quit.” She NEVER ONCE demanded I quit and SHE NEVER once said “quit or else.” I know how badly she wanted me to quit but she wanted me to quit for all right reasons. In other words, I was able to quit because she didn’t make me, I made myself and she was there to catch me if I was falling….So, if you’re a spouse and you come across this “speech,” and you notice your way isn’t working, please tell your partner that you support them if they are serious about quitting. If they aren’t serious, well then they aren’t ready to quit. However, please know, NO ONE will quit if they given ultimatums by the person who is supposed to love them most. It’ll just add unneeded pressure, pressure an addict CAN NOT and SHOULD NOT have on their back. Speaking of Stacy, I just want to say, I love you with all my heart and I’m thankful for you for many reasons, one of them is because you saved my life. You literally saved my LIFE. My mission is to spend the rest of my life showing you how grateful I am for your help and support through out all of this, and beyond.
To J. Wilt and Momma Roush. Your tough love is exactly what the doctor ordered! You were never mean to me, but you told me EXACTLY how it was during this journey. You sincerely rooted for me and sincerely wanted me to succeed! You have no idea how much that meant and always will mean to me. THANK YOU!
To my mom- You’ve been there from the day I started I chewing and you never liked it, but you never stopped loving me. I’m sorry for adding pressure to your daily life for the last 16 years. I can’t thank you enough for supporting me during this journey and for putting up with my crap. I love you mom.
To all the guys and gals at Kill The Can (KTC). Wow! Technically I’m speechless, but considering this is a speech, I’m probably not allowed to be speechless huh? With that being said, I just want to thank you for being there 24-7, literally. Whether it be though the message boards, live chat, Facebook, etc.. You guys always had my back and it REALLY meant a lot! I made friends for life because of KTC and we all have a common bond that we should be very proud of! No, not chewing tobacco….QUITTING chewing tobacco!
Chewie- You are one modest S.O.B.! You’re a damn hero! Not Batman, not Superman, not Spiderman, YOU! You save REAL lives and you do it every time someone joins your site. I’m serious, you are a true hero and I can’t thank you enough!
Thank you and GOD BLESS all of you!
Day 100: May 24th, 2013