Saturday, September 8, 2007

Nicotine Fits?

Well, dear and beloved readers, I am sitting here in the midst of a day of computer cleaning and re-organization, and I was inspired to type up this blog entry because I just recently had my first really noticeable fit of withdrawal from having quit smoking cigarettes about a week ago.

Let us picture the scene. Here I am, sitting in shorts in a t-shirt at my desk, relatively fresh from one of those really awesome weekend trips to the bathroom where you get to take a bath, then take a shower, drip dry in the cool air, brush your teeth for ten minutes straight, floss, shave, and just generally get CLEAN. I'm going through my computer, adding new programs here, removing old programs there, messing around with Google's impressive array of software, drinking a cup of chocolate milk (my absolute favorite drink, other than cold water). All of a sudden, I began to feel as though I were being cornered. I felt like there was some force pushing me down, and I was getting angrier and angrier at the ambient noise in the street, at the glare from my computer screen, at the music I had on, at me. It got to the point where I was ready to punch a hole through my monitor before I got up and walked around my apartment a little to try and calm down.

I sat back down, still feeling angry and frustrated, but not knowing why, when my subconscious mind popped in with a sudden, "By God I would love to smoke a cigarette." I knew it would make the anger temporarily abate in the process of lighting fire to one of those cylinders of nicotine and chemicals that have been my solace for so long.

In the process of having that above thought, I realized that perhaps my completely irrational anger and frustration were in fact the result of nicotine withdrawal. I hadn't thought much of withdrawal before. My symptoms had been mild and limited to a general craving every once in a while, but after some reading online reading, I realized that maybe my body had released all those stressful chemicals in the hopes that I would try to quell them with a cigarette.

Regardless, it sucked, and as I continue my road to freedom from nicotine addiction, my respect grows in each passing day for those who have succeeded, as does my envy for those who have never started the habit. And for all those out there still smoking (including my previously mentioned roommate), keep on keepin' on if it's what you want to do, but damn, those things are crazy.

Edit: Interestingly enough, I was continuing my read of the page I linked above when I came across this sentence: "Our cravings are the mind's psychological means of warning us that it's time to ingest nicotine to avoid experiencing physical withdrawal (nervousness, irritability, grouchiness, tension, anger, rage, frustration, sweating, jitters, shaking, inability to concentrate and mind fog)."


Panthera_tigris said...

hmm... difficult situation, and even though I have no real idea about any addiction of any kind, I feel like I can relate about the sudden, random burst of being cornered. Even though our situations are different, yours being physical and mine being mental, I understand that intense craving of trying to find just one thing to quickly ease all tension. Although that's how addictions become addictions to begin with. So although we are strangers, I want to say that I admire you and am impressed with your decision. I hope all goes well. Until later my stranger friend,

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