Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Blowing Smoke

One thing that really surprises me these days is seeing someone light up a cigarette.

After all the medical evidence linking tobacco and smoking to various cancers and diseases -- evidence that continues to mount -- it's just hard to believe that someone would puff on what we used to refer to as a cancer stick.

Confession time. I used to smoke. I quit nearly 34 years ago. Why? I was puffing a cigarette and my 2-year-old son, Justin, picked up a popsicle stick and mimicked me. My wife was eight-months along with our second son, Sean, and I decided right then and there that I wasn't going to influence my children to become smokers.

That was in August 1978. I haven't had a cigarette since then. That's not to say I haven't been exposed to second-hand smoke on a few occasions. But I try to avoid places where people can be so inconsiderate of others that they light up and puff away.

I'm not going to go over the statistics. You can read about them on the National Cancer Institute or American Cancer Society websites. Anyway, I'm not sure numbers, even overwhelming figures, can convince people to give up that nasty habit.

Besides, we all know smoking is harmful -- even deadly -- to one's health. And to the one's you love and care about.

Until the next time...


  1. I've been there myself. Next month I'll celebrate 3 years since I quit and I can't say I miss it (I smoked for 16 years). For years, I just didn't care because I enjoyed it, regardless of consequences. But in 2009, I realized, I was tired of it, plain & simple, so both my husband & I quit within weeks of each other. I used the patches and he weaned himself down over a month to just quitting cold turkey. Both methods worked for each of us and we agree we're all the better for it and so are our kids.

  2. That was a smart decision, Taryn. I smoked for 13 years, up to three packs a day at the end. As for quitting, I went cold turkey. My father and father-in-law, both heavy smokers, quit in their late 60s. They had been smokers for 50 years or so. So, as we can attest, it can be done if a person puts some effort into it.