Since 6am when my eyes popped open, I have been obsessed with wanting to have a cigarette. There was a three hour reprieve when I was at work this morning, and the rest of the time I have been practically living on Quitnet. I thought I had the afternoon and evening covered, but my plans went out the window (through a series of events out of my control) and so did my cool, calm, collected self and my resolve to stay smoke-free. I felt irritated, frustrated, disappointed, angry, let down, not in control, and afraid. So afraid, in fact, that I couldn't trust myself to drive across town as my Plan B to see a friend or my brother and possibly go for a walk (which I thought would help me feel better) because I was certain I would cave and buy a pack of cigarettes the moment I went through the door with the high stress level and vulnerability I was experiencing.
I am not gonna lie, it was not pretty there for a while. I spent about three hours in an escalating state of panic and snotting and bawling like an emotional basket case. Which in turn made me feel like a pathetic weakling and I cried harder with the sense of impending failure and hatred of myself for not being stronger and more composed. I remember being emotional the first time I quit, but I didn't remember it hitting this intensely so soon in the quit. It also irked me that the friend who wanted to quit the least has been having the easiest time of it today.
Thankfully, I got myself to a chat room where supportive fellow quitters were ready and willing to get me through. They kept tabs on me, encouraged me, reassured me, checked on me, gave me their tips, tricks, and words of wisdom, made me laugh, consoled me, comforted me, soothed me, told me what I have been experiencing is normal...they commiserated with me, stayed with me, kept me with them, and helped me hang in there until I was strong enough to leave and they assured me that they would be there should I find myself needing them later. How wonderful is that? And so, eventually, I was able to take the Nicorette inhaler out of my mouth, where it had been hanging haphazardly and being chewed and puffed on intermittently, throw the wadded up ball of tissues in the trash can, clean up my blotched and tear stained face, and sign out.
The relief and excitement of making it into Day Two (which feels like a huge accomplishment at this point, I gotta say) combined with the humble gratitude for the help I was embarrassed to need but glad to receive allowed me to breathe a little easier and gave me renewed faith that I can do this. I made a list of reasons to keep my quit (which I plan to keep on hand and review frequently), I have plans to make a list of distractions for when the intense cravings hit again, and I have bookmarked more websites to explore. Happily, my eyes are no longer puffy and bloodshot. My hope now is that I will be able to sleep tonight and that tomorrow will be a little easier than today.