Friday, September 21, 2007

Non-smoker mania

It is now 15 weeks since “C-Day” – the day I stopped smoking cigarettes.
Why don’t I feel good?
If I dare to complain about the almost primal cravings which continue to grip me, I am told by my “supportive” friends and family that I should be over it.
No one has ever taken so long, my husband said. It should be right out of your body now.

Well, I have no idea about anyone else and I had no idea I was on some sort of clock.

Then again, I know I am no longer allowed to wear the patches because the time of patches has run out.
I am not sure how helpful they were, anyway. The cravings were there with the patches and without the patches.
I am still not just craving but suffering these deep thirst-like sensations.
I have no social trigger. I don’t want a cigarette because someone else is smoking. I don’t want a cigarette because I have had a meal or I am on the phone or I am having a glass of wine. The problem I suffer is disassociated from activities.
It comes from within my body. It is a physical thing, not an issue of habit or emotional crutch.
Then again, my emotional wellbeing is, well, not well.
I continue to be on some sort of razor’s edge. There is an undercurrent of deep anger running through me. Odd things tip me right over the edge. I feel as if I am surrounded by extremely stupid people. An example.
I was at a formal function – an elegant brunch. We were about ten to the table with platters propped aloft in the centres of each table – one loaded with pastries and the other with fruit. The food just stayed there as the people settled in, as the speeches took place, as the entertainments were presented…It stayed until I made a move. When scones were delivered to the table, well the waitress was an idiot in that she put the two platters of scones together on one side of the table – the furthest, so far as I was concerned. And, of course, none of the women would touch them. The sat there pretending there were no fresh scones right in front of them. I waited for someone over there to make a move. But they sat about like idiot dumplings. I looked at them and, yes, it was dumplings they resembled. Big blobs of dough. Poor socially inept women awed by the occasion. And I knew it was up to me again to get that bloody food moving around the table. Despite the fact that I was absolutely furthest away from it. And I hated those poor, pretentious women. I hated them!!! I roiled and boiled with my fury. I am still pissed off with them, whoever they were.
This just ain’t like me!
It feels weird. Uncomfortable. Exhausting.
There is this whole emotional burden going on – a manic current.
Prod me and I erupt. Niggle me and I pop. And is that me talking, talking, talking? Why am I talking so bloody much? I want me to shut up. Why do I have to talk so much? Why do people keep asking me things and wanting more than I can give?

Oddly, I can do rather well on my own. Walking alone through the city, I am overcome by the loveliness of things and people around me. There are feelings that it is all just so beautiful. It is almost euphoria.
And I can ride waves of love for those I love – or even strangers.
I can be contented with my own thoughts…

Then some idiot sets me off, then that draining craving discomfort surges up through my body – that thirst-like thing.
And I’m nutty again.
This is all very disturbing.
My whole being is out of kilter.


Anonymous said...

Why ask why? In reading the first part, I thought, if I didn't know this was about not smoking, I would have immediately connected it with grieving. Another emotional-while-grounded-in-tangible reality sort of struggle. People timing you, expectations of certain behavior, surrounded by a world who is not sharing your loss.
And loss it is. Cigarettes are our friend, often. How wonderful to be able to say, excuse me, I'm going out for a smoke, when the need to just be AWAY creeps in.
So here you are, doing the virtuous thing for your health, for your life, and you miss it deeply for whatever reasons - they don't need naming - and what was clouded by smoke is now in your face with no reliever available.
Go figure. I salute you though I puff on despite everyone, including my brother and daughter, quitting and waiting for me to hold up the white flag.
Or...start again. The lovely bit is, you do have the choice of how you deal with a world less smoke hazed. Let me know what you find to keep the banshees at bay.

perish said...

I fell your pain and am in toal agreeance.