500 days coming up tomorrow. I have thought about penning this a couple times and couldn’t get all of my thoughts together. I am doing it now not because I have it together, but I need to get it out there in case it could help anyone else. Others helped me …so here is my story.
My biggest regret in now writing this sooner is I won’t remember all those who helped me. Jburrus, bait, dizzy, FL, AN, tarp – some of the old timers – drbruce – greg. Everyone in the December 2010 Guard, my group created more drama in 100 days than I thought was humanly possible. Guys you don’t know how much you helped my quit. The distraction was a powerful thing. The way the drama circled to anger then at times maybe a bit of hate and finally refocused on the task at hand. A bunch of brothers (and one sister) locked in the arena and the fight was with the nicotine. These are guys I owe my permanent teeth, thousands of dollars in dental bills and very possibly my life to. But that is really the end before the beginning.
I started dipping in my early 20’s – it was a way to get nicotine without the tell tale smell of smoke that those who cared about me greatly disapproved of, plus I was active, cycling etc and didn’t want the smoke and burning lungs that smoking caused….so in my infinite wisdom I dipped. My biggest reason for wanting to quit is I will answer to God for my decisions. Dipping was 100% selfish. It didn’t benefit my wife, kids, friends…I was the only one who even thought they were getting something from this. To top it off everyone else HATED it. I went back and forth from sneaking it to being a bit more open to chewing the gum, wearing the patch you name it I cycled through it. At 36 years old I knew I had to quit, the question is how?? I had tried everything!! I figured I would suck it up, pray a lot and get er done. The problem with that is we were not created or designed to do things on our own. We are always best when we work together. Ecclesiastes 4:12 says “Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A cord of three strands is not quickly broken.” When on day 4 I stumbled across KTC I knew this time would be different. This was the key accountability and support I had been missing in all my other quits. God was giving me the threefold cord and the strength it provided…would I take it? I read everything I could, posted roll daily. Printed up my contract to cave and kept it close, if it got real bad I would read Tom Kerns story. That did more to wake my eyes up to the reality of what was at stake than anything else.
It didn’t make it easy, it didn’t make it fun but it has made it LAST! 500 days are almost completed. While I am not crave free they are short and weak compared to the early days. I am convinced if I caved one more time..had just one more dip it I would go to my grave with it. Even worse my 5 year old boy would probably pick it up as soon as he could sneak a can. One day I would have to answer to God for why I made such a stupid decision. So by HIS grace, shown through the KTC website and particular the GUARD I am quit and tomorrow I will make that promise again.