To any of you who are struggling,
I am truly sorry that you are experiencing this pain and discomfort. Perhaps it is a bit stronger and lasting longer than you expected it would. Perhaps you are feeling like you really were not prepared for this kind of struggle … I don’t know, but I can tell you this:
You are not alone and honestly, you are not more addicted than the rest of us either. The mental anguish you are dealing with will go away, the feelings of loss and boredom and doom will fade … they ALWAYS do.
If you could only see things from my vantage point. I know this has been hell for you. Do not forget, I went through it too. But now I’ve been walking away from tobacco for well over 600 days. I can see so much more clearly now … you need to get to a similar spot. The only way to do that is just tackle each day and decide that NO MATTER WHAT, you are gonna stay clean. Please believe me that life will indeed get better and staying quit will truly get easier. Just continue to distance yourself from tobacco and these two sayings will become reality.
It’s somewhat like this old, familiar story …
One evening an old man told his grandson about a struggle that goes on inside people. He said, “My son, the battle is between 2 ‘wolves’ inside us all. One is Evil. It is anger, envy, jealousy, sorrow, regret, greed, arrogance, self-pity, guilt, resentment, inferiority, lies, false pride, superiority and ego. The other is Good. It is joy, peace, love, hope, serenity, humility, kindness, benevolence, empathy, generosity, truth, compassion and faith.”
The grandson thought about it for a minute and asked, “Grandfather, which wolf wins?”
The old man replied simply, “The one you choose to feed.”
There remains inside me, a continuous fight. There is the ugly side … called addiction. And there is the beautiful side … called freedom. These two sides cannot coexist. One will win and one will lose. The one that wins will do so because it is well cared for, nurtured and fed. The loser will be defeated due to starvation and neglect.
In some ways, this story very concisely puts quitting into perspective. Certainly, the mere fact we are here reading and posting on this website is proof that we want to be free from the bonds of nicotine addiction. And yet, there is this other part of us, the part that wants to return to the security of our addiction. As nicotine junkies, we have a choice. We can choose to feed the part of us struggling to be free or we can choose to feed the part of us that secretly wants to return to the open arms of tobacco. The existence of this perverse, ugly “wolf” saddens me, but I am convinced he is still inside each of us.
He is wimpering and whining and tiresome. He wants to be fed. Don’t do it. His appetite is insatiable. Stop throwing him scraps – you must continue to starve him. Eventually, he will become so weak that he really won’t be all that bothersome.
Instead, feed the other one. The part of you that desires freedom; the one you were born to be. Feed this part of you, nurture it, watch as this wolf gains strength and eventually dominates the other.
Be strong and take courage!