Strength in Numbers – Jacobmldn HOF Speech

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March 17, 2010. That is the day that I changed as a person. Well let me back up. I guess most people usually think their nicotine story begins when they take their first dip, smoke, or chew. For me, it has been a part of me for as long as I can remember. All grandparents were chain smokers, uncles, cousins and my dad all dipped. I have been around this poisonous and addictive substance for my entire life. Every ballgame, every time there was a reason to drive, every fishing trip, and all the times there was just nothing else to do, it was beaten into my head that nicotine was the thing to do. It was pleasurable. But let me be clear, this is not a victim/boohoo story, this is a person that has been a victor for the past 100 days of his life and will do whatever it takes for every day in the rest of his life to stay quit. This is not me laying blame to anyone other than myself. 

Now, back to March 17, 2010. It was a road trip for my college baseball team my freshman year. A senior pitcher that was basically mentoring me offered me a dip. I’ve been offered hundreds of times prior, but something was different this time. So, I took ONE dip and promised to my best friend that it would only ever be one. I told him I understood that it was an addictive substance. I thought I would be fine and that I was better than letting myself succumb to nicotine. From that moment on, I was controlled by nicotine until June 27, 2017. 

That day has been the third best day in my life, although I could argue that it is a three way tie. It is right there with my wedding and the day my son was born. That is the day I finally decided that I would quit. I would no longer allow nicotine to control my life. How did I come about this decision? My son was born on November 26, 2016. My wife and I both agreed that I would stop dipping on his first birthday. 

So, there was a “plan” in place. Or so I thought. Boy was I wrong. Throughout about the first six months I started realizing that my son was starting to react to me. He was learning me just like I was learning him. He was also learning that my lip had a bulge from my dip. He didn’t know why it was there or that is was abnormal. He was just learning that it was me. Every time I did anything with him there was a dip in. Now obviously he didn’t realize what it was at that time, but sure enough he would ask once he got older. I realized that wasn’t what I wanted to have to explain to my son. So it kept growing on me and I kept wondering would I really be able to quit? 

Boredom at work let me to type the daunting words into Google. HOW DO I QUIT DIP? That was June 27, 2017. The third best day of my life. I read as much of the articles as I could on the site. I was gung ho. I knew this had to be done and that it couldn’t wait. 

It has been 100 days since I made the commitment. I have been quit because I followed a very simple process that was laid out by amazing people before me. I jumped in feet first. I used all of the clean substitutes, created a great network and have never missed a day. Some might even say I jumped in too much, but thats what has worked for me. 

There were two major times that I came very close to quitting. Each were the exact same situation but with different people. Two of my closest contacts for the site caved. When we started, we made sure that we would always talk to each other if we ever felt like caving. They didn’t reach out to me prior to them quitting. For some reason, I took that on a personal level. I felt really guilty about them caving. Both came back to the site temporarily to only leave again. Eventually, I realized that they didn’t cave because of me, they caved because of them. They had talked about using the tools that were there, but they didn’t. The tools of KTC mean absolutely nothing is they are not used in the critical moments. That is why I think I haven’t wavered in my commitment to the site. Because of the tools and the processes set up here on KTC I have been able to free myself from being chained down. I will always be willing to help those two if they ever want to come back. 

I truly understand that it is a battle for the rest of my life. There will never come a point where it will be ok to have just one dip and I am absolutely fine with that. Instead, I’ll turn that just one dip into focus on finding a new quitter to help out. As I have told a few of you, the success of the group is just as strong of a goal to me as my own quit. I truly believe we are stronger in numbers.

Because of KTC I will be able to do whatever I can to be around my son and my wife for as long as possible. It has given me a life that I can truly be proud of. It is truly amazing once we remove the cloud that is nicotine and experience the world as it should be. 

It would be extremely rude of me to not mention the people that have helped me in my quit. Samrs, Cschilling1, Jemerch1, RWBullet, Atlanta6774, David S, and many others that I have missed thanks for always being a part of my daily count. Prohunter and Enough, I could never truly thank y’all enough for the help y’all have given me. I hope that I will be able to repay it one day even though I believe it is a debt that can never be unsettled. Y’all have been the light in a dark tunnel on way too many days. 

Last but not least, I have to say that my inspiration was my wife and my son. My wife has been there every step of the way and I think it has strengthened our bond even more. Thank you KTC for showing me the path to a successful quit and I’m ready for that next day!

IQWYEDD

Jacob 

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

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