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#1 quiltfairy

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Posted 03 January 2015 - 05:27 PM

I was told I was only breathing at about 85%; not good! I was also told my lungs were involved with the scleroderma and that I have emphysema. I thought about it for a long time as to whether I wanted to give up smoking or not and I came to the conclusion that I either quit or I die.

So I quit as of January 1 2015; it is now three days later, I have screamed, tried to do some sewing but when it come to cutting the fabric I need it was in little shreds after I got done cutting. Oh well, I guess I will use it to stuff something when I calm down.

Actually it is not that bad but as this disease goes on I have learned to laugh at my mistakes and to start over and if I spill a glass of milk it is not something to cry about and I have learned to appreciate life a lot more as each day is an adventure in overcoming what has happened to my body so far.

I hope in this new year that those that have not found the peace that I have found can find it in this strange and weird disease for I also had to learn this is not a death sentence so I send my blessing out to each of you on this new year.

#2 Joelf

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Posted 03 January 2015 - 09:19 PM

Hi Quiltfairy,

I'm so pleased to read your post; how fantastic that you've managed to give up smoking and I'm sure that you're going to feel much fitter and healthier for it. I'm non smoker myself, but I can imagine the amount of determination and willpower it's taken for you to give up.

All my best wishes to you for the new year; I know you'll be able to continue the great start you've made, so here's to a smoke free and healthier 2015 with the added bonus of being able to make extra cushions or similar with all the extra cuttings you now have!! :wink: :lol:

Kind regards

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#3 miocean

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Posted 04 January 2015 - 06:56 AM

Dear Quiltfairy,
Quitting an addiction is not easy and is ever on going. I stopped smoking in 1977 only to pick it up again from '85-87 after my divorce because my friends were smokers. The best advice is to not smoke ever again. Whenever I go to the doctor and they ask my smoking history I could have been able to say I quit in '77 if it wasn't for those two years.

A good friend of ours quit last year and for almost the entire year he was difficult to live with, according to his live in girlfriend. He is doing great now so just keep shredding fabric, who knows, you might come up with an interesting art form!

Best wishes to you and we are all pulling for you and doing a happy dance.

:happy-dance-line:

miocean


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#4 quiltfairy

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Posted 04 January 2015 - 01:06 PM

Thank you so much for the great responses. The support I feel is overwhelming.

#5 Shelley Ensz

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Posted 04 January 2015 - 03:55 PM

Hi Quiltfairy,

 

Congrats on quitting smoking!  What types of support have you rounded up for yourself, to be able to keep to it?  Some ideas are that you can enroll in a quit smoking course as reinforcement, see your doctor to see if you might benefit from any aids such as nicotine patches if the going gets rough, a friend nearby who has quit and will help you over the rough patches, a series of treats lined up for yourself for each little goalpost along the way.

 

The reason I mention all this is because I quit oh, roughly 200 times, before I was able to succeed at it.  Once I made it for nearly a year and then relapsed!  But mostly I'd make it a few hours or days or weeks and then my good intentions and resolve would bite the dust.  I didn't actually succeed until I promised myself I'd adopt a cat from the humane society if I didn't have a single puff  (I'd always fall for the "just one puff" call of addiction) for 3 weeks.  As the shelter killed their overflow pets, I took it to heart that if I took a single puff, I would be causing a poor innocent cat to die.  Then every time I thought of a cigarette, I had this awful vision of a dead cat, and the urges quickly began to subside!

 

Then once I achieved our lovely cat, I promised myself that if I took a single puff, I would have to take him back to the humane society.  And that is really a death knell, to be the cat taken back!  I couldn't even dream of that, of course, which neatly kept me on course.  I think the whole set up also kept me away from becoming morose by feeling too sorry for myself for what I was "sacrificing" as I was only giving up a habit -- not my life!

 

But quitting was a long involved process for me because I was terribly addicted, and it took me a long time to figure out how to motivate myself.  None of the usual quit-smoking tips worked for me.  You'd still never get me to say I hate the smell, that it was a nasty, ugly habit, or the smoke was awful, that it cost too much!  It was my best friend. It was always there for me, even in the middle of the night.  It smelled heavenly if you ask me.  It was my most favorite hobby!  How can you resent money so well invested?  And about health, who cared, my health was already shot, go talk to some one healthy about all that rot.

 

I envy people who can do the usual stuff and quit.  They can just think, oh yeah, that is no good, I'm done with it, and they are, and go on with their life as though nothing major had happened!  But for me it was something very major, on par with divorcing someone I loved!  Until I put it in the life-and-death of a cat perspective.  It helped enormously that I valued an anonymous cat's life more than my own, of course.

 

Over a year later, we moved, and had to put the cat up for adoption.  By then I was amazed to find that the "dead cat" thing was so embedded in my brain that I couldn't go back to smoking, to this day.  I must say though I am the only person I know who has ever taken the dead cat approach to smoking, but I was desperate and nothing else had worked for me, long term.

 

You have a terrific start!  Now, how can you reinforce this to make sure it lasts and isn't just another New Year's flash-in-the-pan resolution?  Because it is good for you and may greatly extend your life with scleroderma -- reducing Raynaud's and the risk of gangrene and amputation, for sure!  But as a reformed smoker for the past 25 years, I can say those reasons mean nothing to me; avoiding health complications is just a fringe benefit.  I still love everything about smoking.  It was a great old friend, and one that in the end, I was happy to wave goodbye to as I came home with my new kitty.

 

So I wish you to the courage to do whatever it takes this New Year to find all the creative ways you need to keep breathing fresh, pure air!  And remember we are always here for you, through thick or thin.

 

:hug-group:


Warm Hugs,

Shelley Ensz
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Hotline and Donations: 1-800-564-7099

The most important thing in the world to know about scleroderma is sclero.org.

#6 quiltfairy

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Posted 04 January 2015 - 05:13 PM

Yes, Shelley, I agree with you; smoking has been my best friend. It has never given up on me when others did, but now I have to say goodbye to it. I have a goal to see my grand kids again in my lifetime, as they were adopted out last year and so all I have to do is to see my grand kids in front of my casket. Sounds morbid but it seems to be working thus far. I also have two best friends, the four legged kind; Tony, my 11 year old poodle and Mariah, my 4 year old husky mix. Since I have quit they seem to want to be close to me instead of in another room; Tony, my poodle, has respiratory problems because of being attacked by a pit bull when he was just a little over a year old and his lungs sound so much better since I quit smoking. All I have to do is think that maybe I have been causing my poodle breathing problems; I want to be around to care for them and for them not wind up at the humane society.

 

I also have friends that I can call day or night to keep from lighting up; as for the patch I am allergic to the adhesive on the tape so I will have to go without that. I cannot take varenicline because I get very angry and could hurt someone as I do not think when that happens. There is also gum, but I have false teeth and it sticks to my dental work and the way I have been feeling I don't want to go through this again, so with all my willpower and might, especially with the help from the man upstairs, I will make it.

 

Thank you for your kind words.



#7 greypilgrim256

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Posted 07 January 2015 - 03:19 AM

I don't have any advice to give you on the quitting front as I have never smoked a cigarette in my life.  HOWEVER, my wife recently "quit"....she really just cut down big time on cigarettes, and she had major success using the electronic cigarettes.  I know some people worry about the e-cigs, but I have to imagine that there is nothing legally worse you can do to your health than inhale a modern cigarette.  Good luck with the quitting!



#8 quiltfairy

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Posted 15 February 2016 - 05:16 PM

Just to keep everybody up to date it is now February 15th 2016 and I am enjoying all the extra money as they do not give you much on SSI. With the money I was able to fix my big sewing machine and buy a small one while the big one was in the shop. I just bought this great tablet with a keyboard and my checking account has not gone red; I have money in my savings account so if you are thinking about quitting smoking, learn to enjoy extras.

One thing that really helped that I had to quit smoking was talking to a transplant team to find out if I needed a new kidney or lung. I was going to die and I would of had to quit by 3 years, so look at it as a choice to live or die.

I give each of you struggling with this my blessing.

#9 Joelf

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Posted 15 February 2016 - 09:09 PM

Hi Quiltfairy,

So pleased to read your post! :bravo:

Well done to you for still being off the cigarettes and it just shows what a benefit it has been; not only healthwise (although that's a major bonus) but for your pocket as well!

Long may it continue!

Best wishes,


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#10 dimarzio

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Posted 16 February 2016 - 05:23 AM

Still cutting down to 8 per day.  Pity I can't use gum as my esophegus flares up when I chew nicotine gum.  Patches never helped, but I did give up for a year using gum many years ago.

 

Just too stressed by the effects of this disease to go cold turkey - I really wish I could.  I need the odd cigarete just to relieve the boredom of not being able to do all the things I used to be able to do.



#11 Sweet

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Posted 16 February 2016 - 08:46 AM

Congrats!!!!  :balloons:  :bravo:


Warm and gentle hugs,

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#12 Shelley Ensz

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Posted 16 February 2016 - 12:13 PM

Hi Quiltfairy,

 

Major congratulations to you on your success in breathing pure fresh air, finding the positives in the situation, and making hay with new sewing equipment and such. I think that is simply marvelous, all the way around. You have turned it into a totally win/win/win situation!

 

I think this is worthy of a great big Sclero Happy Dance!

 

:happy-dance-line: :jump-for-joy: :happy-dance-line:  :hug-bear: :happy-dance-line:


Warm Hugs,

Shelley Ensz
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International Scleroderma Network (ISN)
Hotline and Donations: 1-800-564-7099

The most important thing in the world to know about scleroderma is sclero.org.

#13 Shelley Ensz

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Posted 16 February 2016 - 12:21 PM

Hi Dimarzio,

 

Oh. my nicotine addiction also caused me to fall for the old "boredom" line. For decades, I'm ashamed to say.

 

I know it sounds completely ridiculous to never-smokers, but I honestly had a terrible time just sitting idly, before I finally succeeded at quitting. 

 

However, it was lots easier for me to figure out ways to defeat the boredom aspect, once I realized it was only my addiction speaking, and that smoking simply does not solve a boredom problem. Here's a site that explains it well:  Myth: Smoking Relieves Boredom.

 

We have quite a Sclero Happy Dance thread starting here. I know you're not ready to make the leap for yourself yet, which is fine, but it'd be great for you to join in on the Happy Dance that I just started for Quiltfairy.  Who knows, with any luck, maybe someday we'll be able to throw one for you!

 

:hug-group:


Warm Hugs,

Shelley Ensz
Founder and President
International Scleroderma Network (ISN)
Hotline and Donations: 1-800-564-7099

The most important thing in the world to know about scleroderma is sclero.org.

#14 Amanda Thorpe

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Posted 17 February 2016 - 02:23 PM

Well done Quiltfairy! You go girl!

Hello Dimarzio, I gave up and spent a year eating extra strong mints. They gave my hands and mouth something to do. I had a friend who gave up and did the same thing. Mind you that was nearly 30 years ago! Oh, I am that old!

Take care.
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#15 quiltfairy

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Posted 18 February 2016 - 11:46 PM

The only way I quit smoking was to stop making excuses. I did the "I'm too stressed, I can't do anything because of my illness", etc.,etc.,etc.

Find a hobby - mine happens to be quilting and making doll clothes. I made more mistakes that first week, but that was OK. I think the hardest time was the end of August when my mom died, but I made it through.
Become determined by the way cigarettes are a stimulant, I now find when I am stressed it is not as bad. When I go to my place of worship I listen and when I go to my doctors I come out feeling good about the visit; before I quit smoking all I thought about was getting the next cigarettes. It was like having a ball and chain attached to me.

Yes it is hard if you make it hard; this time I was ready and I made a plan.

Good luck to you and I send you my blessings and I promise things will get better.

#16 Joelf

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Posted 19 February 2016 - 02:44 AM

Dear Quiltfairy,

Thanks so much for your encouraging and supportive post.

It just shows that determination and a positive attitude can help you to accomplish whatever goal you choose!

I'm going to do the Sclero Happy Dance again for you!

:happy-dance-line:  :flowers: :happy-dance-line:


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