I have started and stopped this post multiple times. I’ve been conflicted as to what 100 days quit really means to me.
Part of me is elated! I can’t believe I hit 100 days. It almost doesn’t feel real as for 27+ years I was a slave. I was, and still am, an addict. Never in my wildest dreams would I have thought I would make it this long without nicotine.
The other part of me doesn’t want to celebrate at all and wants to quash any mention of 100 days. I chewed for nearly 10,000 days…what is 100 compared to that? How can I celebrate when it’s only been 100 days?
Clearly the latter is being way too hard on myself. 100 days is a huge milestone for any quitter of any addiction! I am proud and thankful to everyone that has stood by me every single day that I’ve been on this site. I am thankful to my daughter who has stood by me and weathered the emotional storm. And most of all I thank God for being with me every second of every day and I am thankful that He’s given me a new start.
My story is like so many others here. We decided to do something stupid a long time ago, fell into the trap and we’ll forever be fighting it’s effects.
While my story is the same as most, my quit journey is a bit different. I didn’t participate in this website, in this brotherhood, in this accountability factory until day 66 of my quit. It was about 10 days into my quit when I looked up “What to expect when quitting chew” and found this site. I would read what to expect on what days at least 2 times a day. I leaned heavily into God….I got on my knees, told him I’m not strong enough, and I gave Him my addiction. Whenever I was confronted with a craving, I literally told the craving that chewing was no long mine to give. If the craving wanted me to chew, it needed go to Jesus, convince Him that chewing was in my best interest, and then Jesus needed to tell me to kill myself. I had this conversation in my head multiple times a day.
While I used the resources of this site, I never did sign up. I’d say it was mostly because of the awkward factor. Did I really need help from other quitters? Do I want to give out my number to random dudes? Especially guys in AZ who are known man predators (you know who you are!)? For me, starting to quit was one thing, but staying quit was a whole different ballgame. Once the suck starts to go away, the guard starts to go down. I wouldn’t say my guard went down per say, but I was starting to think this quitting thing wasn’t as hard as it once was. And to push this notion further, I grew up around a group of guys that chewed. I am the last one to quit out of all of them. Most of them are years into their quit and did it alone. They didn’t get other quit friends involved, they didn’t get their families involved. I think it’s great that they were able to do that. I wasn’t. While I didn’t have the KTC group for the beginning, I did get my daughter involved. She’s 7 and when I decided to quit, I sat her down, told her what I was doing, told her I had a problem, told her I might be weird for a while, but that I was, God willing, going to get better. Something about being completely exposed to a person that looks up to me, thinks I walk on water, was very powerful and liberating. I didn’t have to hide it anymore. I didn’t have to lie to my daughter.
Got off my point – while I did my early quit alone, I needed to stay quit. That’s where KTC came into my life. I didn’t join so people could encourage me through the suck, I joined because I wanted to build a network of quitters that know what the chewing lifestyle was all about, and know what freedom is like once we decided life is more important. I wanted to be held accountable and also hold others accountable. Not to mention I’ve met some cool MF’ers.
While posting roll is important so I can keep accountability with my HOF group and encourage them, sending out texts is equally, if not more important to me. Some of these dudes I text with are maniacs and will most likely hunt me down and beat the snot out of me if something were to happen. It’s such a personal declaration of my quit through a message with someone at the other end. And it’s not only veterans or people in my group. For me, one of the main objectives of this site is helping the new person that stumbles upon this site and is scared, is at the end of their rope. It’s showing them that there is a way, that there are people who care. It’s seeing newbies go through the suck, but also are happy that they are actually doing it. That’s paying it forward. We’ve all been helped, and we can all in turn help others.
We suck. We are addicts. We’ve all disappointed ourselves for so many years. Yet this does not define us! There is freedom from this if we truly want to be quit. We can do this if we take one day at a time, heck, one minute at a time is a lot of cases. I am glad to be 100+ days quit…but under no circumstance will I ever rest, will I ever take this for granted, will I ever puff out my chest. I will stay humble, I will rely on God and my quit brothers and sisters and will continue to be quit for today with all of the bad-ass quitters out there!
I can’t wait to meet the person I have never met before…..the person that decides nicotine isn’t worth giving up their life and wants/needs help!