Diary of a Nicotine Addict: Phase 1

Lit cigarette in ashtrayWednesday, May 12th

Dear Diary,

In Phase 1 of the Mayo Clinic program, they want you to start preparing yourself  for the Big Day. First, they had me write a list of all the reasons I want to quit smoking. That was easy. Next I got to make another list, this time of what things I plan to do instead of smoking. That list is much smaller- is that bad?

They also  suggest talking with my doctor about the various stop smoking aids available. I had heard about Chantix from my Southern CA doctor and I asked my Northern CA Doc to prescribe some for me. He wouldn’t do it. Too many dangerous side-effects of “mental episodes” and “suicidal urges”, he tells me.

I thought it was “mental episodes” and “suicidal urges” that I was trying to avoid by taking the damn pills. And what about the homicidal urges? Are these just going to go unchecked?  Quitting smoking can be hazardous to the health of those around you. At the very least, it isn’t pretty.

As I reach to click the Submit button for Phase 1 and start Phase 2, I suddenly pause.

Here they come. The addict’s thoughts. The ones that sabotage the thoughts I was having about stopping smoking. My addiction is a cunning and baffling Bitch. She messes with me by stirring up fear, dread, and self-doubt. She does everything she possibly can to keep me using nicotine.  She is  killing me.

I catch myself thinking I should wait and not pick a Quit Date yet. I don’t feel ready now. And work has been so intense and stressful… I realize it’s the Bitch talking, but she starts making sense if I don’t stop her.

Maybe Phase 2 can help me shut the Bitch up…


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