Leigh, I'm sooooOOOOOO happy for you!!!
I still haven't slayed my own dragon...sigh...
That you have set that goal is a mortal wound to the dragon.
I was a smoker for 10 years. A quitter for 10 more, 20 in all.
I could have done it sooner had I known what I found out about myself in that last day in 1976.
I discovered there was no help, no tricks, no 'method,' that worked on me.
Leaving me only ONE thing.
Giving myself permission to smoke if I really wanted to.
That pack of cigarettes lay on the living room coffee table for six months. And when I wanted a laugh I'd stop by and try to talk myself into going ahead and smoking.
I defeated myself, so to speak.
Since I knew I had two voices, at least, in this matter, I simply let them fight it out.
"Go ahead," I said standing there gazing at the unopened pack. "Go ahead and smoke it if you want it, but want it, not think you want it. Be sure you do."
Now everyone is not me, but I know there is a perverse entity in nearly everyone (maybe everyone, indeed) that can be called on to do the fighting.
At times I would find myself arguing in this way, (Caps mean I'm yelling) "GO AHEAD STUPID, stop being a hero, you know you want it. SMOKE IT, NOW."
And I'd have to sit down I was laughing at myself so hard.
And don't tell me I wasn't addicted. Nearly 30 years later I was still having the occasional dream, a "real," type dream where I did not know I was asleep and dreaming, and I was a smoker again.
Two sisters, my students, who I taught riding to and helped by horses, had a father that was a psychiatrist. We became friends over the years, he and I. His specialty? Addiction.
Know what he told me?
"Take up heroin, I can help you kick that, but tobacco, forget it. Never been successful working with smokers."
Being a psychiatrist, and rather good I think, he had me figured out. Set a barrier so high it appeared to be unbeatable.
Yeah, he had me figured out.
For you see I am stubborn. Tell me I cannot do something (that others have done, especially) and then jump back.
Just some random thoughts. Hopefully they will inspire someone to take up the fight with themselves.
For you see, it's not the tobacco I think, nor the companies that make the poison, but ourselves. Always.