So why do i smoke ? Well, I don't. Not now anyway.
I used to smoke. I had intense smoking periods of time and not so intense. It all started in the University. I had friends that were smoking for more than 10 years at that point. I did not understand why are they doing it and now that I think about it, I do not understand nor remember how I started doing it. I remember my struggles on trying to quit. It was hard, or so I thought. Eventually it turned out to be quite easy, but than again I did try a rather long time.
At first it was cool but with time it gradually grew into a habit. I smoked for a few years and finally decide to ditch it. The habit would result in bad breath and nothing more. Wrong again, but I did not know it back than. I was young, healthy and very cool. Cool people do not care about risks, well … i took on the wrong kind of risk to show coolness. It was the exact opposite. It was not cool, it was hazardous, it was disrespectful and it was a drug dependent issue. I used to smoke around four cigarettes a day back then. It took me four years of smoking cigarettes to start thinking about dropping smoking. It took me another 2 years of trying to cut down on my daily dosage. I tried to smoke less. I tried to smoke slim cigarettes. I tried menthol cigarettes and then cigars for a while. I tried reading a book on how to quit the bad habit. I switched from cigarettes to smoking kalian like a chimney. That was another silly idea. In the end of the 2 years I ended up smoking the same four cigarettes a day. It was a disaster. I felt helpless. I felt that I was not in control of myself and my feelings.
I stopped trying. I remember sitting down one day and just thinking about it. Thinking of how I failed myself and why. I analyzed my smoking habits and smoking in general. I structured it and gave it a lot of thought. One of the questions I could not answer was "why". Why do I keep smoking. I could not see one single advantage in it, but only downsides. I did not do sports as much, I was starting to get out of breath more and more often. Yet I kept doing it.
I was reading a lot in those days. So, one evening, while I was at the usual table in my favorite bar and finished yet another book, I lit another cigarette and from nowhere, it came to me. I quit. I looked at the freshly lit cigarette and i smoked it to the end. I do not know why i finished it, but I did. I put it out when I was done. I payed the bill and left the bar.
That was it. I was free. It took 2 years of meaningless attempts versus a few hours of inner self digging to finally realize that I am who I decide to be. I do what I want to do.
Today, many years later, as I was returning to work from launch I felt a weird craving to light up. It felt extremely familiar yet so distant. I thought about it and decided to write this article to remind myself of the extraordinary feeling of liberation I felt that night when I left the bar.
And to finish on a positive and funny note :