Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Smoking gum lead me to smoking

A few months before Christmas, I think it was the start of November, last. I was watching some TV and there was an advert for a Quit Smoking product, one of those gums that you use to replace nicotine and help reduce the cravings you from smoking. Little did I know this would lead me to be addicted to nicotine and fearful for my life.

A few days later I was with some friends and I spotted the same advert on the goggle box in the bar we were in. I begin to wonder if these would be help someone trying to quit and if they knew anyone that used them to quit. I but the question to my mates I was astonished to learn that one of my friends that I knew was off cigarettes for a few years now still used these when he went to the pub as it was here he felt most at risk of 'falling of the wagon'.

He had some on him as we spoke, he offered me one as I was so inquisitive. I accepted thinking nothing of it. It tasted fine, not as bland as I had imagined. Let it be noted there was no huge warning on the box about their addictiveness, or how they can cause cancer etc. After the club, my head was sore but something wanted more, I asked my mate for another one, a trend that would soon be commonplace in me.

The following day I was edgy, curt and really out of sorts. But this had passed by the next day, which was good as I was at work. Nothing happened for a week or so until the I had a cold. I went to the local pharmacy for some hot lemon with paracetamol in it to help get rid of the bunged nose and pounding head, as I was queuing I spotted some nicotine patches I picked them up and was reading the packaging. Before I had time to finish reading the box I was at the counter being served so instead of entering an embarrassing conversation about why in the world I have these in my hand when I don't smoke I thought what the hell, I just bought them.

The box turned out to be of a medium dosage/strength. On returning home I was still curious about them, and remembering back to the asking my friend for that second gum, I don't know why I just put a patch on. It was uncomfortable at first, there was a tingle but I could feel my heard beginning to race and I was enjoying the buzz.
By the end of the week the box was gone. I had used one daily to begin with but this escalated to having one on every minute I was awake.

Soon I found my self not having any reaction from them the buzz was gone. I decided to stopped using them altogether. Until I passed a billboard with a beautiful woman (I remember she was beautiful as I instantly thought of Gwyneth Paltrow smoking when I saw it) with a gorgeous smile who had quit smoking by using the patches I decided to ditch.

I didn't want to use the patches anymore, but soon was cranky and depressed. I needed another hit. Then I saw a Johnny Cash music video and eureka I'd get the buzz back if I had a smoke. So I skipped to the shop and bought some herbal cigarettes, who would have known they are useless, not only did they not have any taste they had no impact on me at all. I was officially craving cancer sticks.

It was a downhill slope from here, first was menthol cigarettes but soon the mint became to strong it begun to overpower the flavor of the hit I needed, So I upped the ante to lights. Here I stayed for while, nice and high unaware of the reality of what I had done to myself. But it didn't stop there.

One evening out in a bar, I was in the relegation pool (Where I'm living there is an outright ban on smoking in workplaces which includes bars, restaurants, offices and public buildings, so not only am I now rewriting my life expectancy but I also have to do it outside in the cold, damn, wet Irish weather), but had no smokes on me. I bummed/borrowed one from another person outside. They gave me heaven coated in a white skin with no filter, a rolley. It was like the first gum all over again, the holy grail I'd been looking for. I thought to myself, I should find the cigarette for me.

I begun not carrying coffin nails with me any more as it is quite easy to acquire one now, as I'm forced to smoke in the wilderness with the other beasts, all I needed was a light to lure someone to me and as they requested its use I would require payment. I went through the check list of tobacco products, lights, mediums, long, short. But it was on twenty major I found myself, my goal.

This brings me to Christmas. My family didn't know I smoke nor did I want them to. So I bring a box of cigars for my father as an xmas gift, fine Cuban ones. This was perfect and worked like a charm. He invites me for one soon after dinner. My hunger is quenched.

So today I'm writing this in the hopes that laying it out in front of me, I'll be able to but it behind me as I start to retrace my steps. Down the ladder, away form the death sticks, back to the normality that I new not so long ago.

Today is the first step to my recovery.

But I cant help wonder what chewing tobacco would be like.


1 comment:

lynchtp said...

some of this may not be true