Reaching the Big Quit

My husband and I are long-time smokers. I’m embarrassed to even say that. It’s been over 30 years for each of us since we started smoking, and we’ve tried to quit time after time, unsuccessfully. It really IS an addiction – one I wish we had avoided at all costs when we were young.

Besides all of the negative effects smoking has on your health, it has negative social and financial effects, as well. A pack of cigarettes costs $11! Multiply that by seven days a week, for months, and for years. It’s ridiculous. And, although I take great efforts to not smell like a smoker, I have recently been able to smell it on my clothes and in my car, and I’m embarrassed by it. No one I work with smokes, to my knowledge – just me.

We’ve tried quitting over the years. We’ve used the patch and the gum, and tried quitting “cold turkey” and taking prescribed medication. There was even a call-in service my husband used once, where you would call when you felt the urge to smoke, and the person on the other end would basically try to talk you down. Needless to say, it didn’t work. Nothing has worked. And now, we’re feeling desperate. We’re not getting any younger, and we worry that we may not be around a decade from now if we don’t do something drastic.

I was lying in bed one night, and began thinking about my mother’s friend, who had quit smoking after 35 years after seeing a hypnotherapist. I never put much stock in it, but I couldn’t stop thinking about it. The next day, I put it out there in a few local groups on Facebook, asking if anyone could recommend a hypnotist for smoking cessation.

I was stunned at how many replies I received. I was even more stunned when my husband asked me the next day if I’d had any replies to my post about a hypnotist. I asked him, positive that his answer would be no, if he’d consider trying hypnotherapy. Without hesitation, he said yes.

We chose a certified hypnotherapist from the recommendations, and we had two sessions with her. I felt as though it didn’t work for me, as I was wide awake and aware the whole time. I felt disappointed.

That being said, it’ll be six days since either of us has touched a cigarette (by the time this blog posts). Although I do still get an urge to have one at the typical times I would normally have one, I breathe deeply instead and the urge passes. I have not had one single urge to buy a pack. I pass people on the street who are smoking and feel only an objective curiosity, with no desire to smoke, myself.

So, I’m feel cautiously optimistic – cautiously, because we’ve tried to quit and failed so many times; optimistic because we really want this, and – so far, so good. Our fingers are crossed.

About Ann Luongo

Ann Luongo is the Marketing Writer and Lifestyle Reporter for CapeCod.com, and has been writing for Cape Cod and South Shore publications for over 15 years.