December is a month that I do a fair amount of reflection, it’s my birthday month. It is also the month that I celebrate sobriety and celebrate being tobacco free too. It is a month of positive change. I am truelly amazed at the difference of my quality of life as a result of stopping smoking. As I have shared in the past, I have lost dear family members to tobacco. So I had a good base of motivation from the loses in my life. Sometimes that is enough to quit in and of itself, but I would have sold myself way short if that were as deep as it went.
Now I will be the first to tell you that I am not a guy that usually makes changes out of some kind of virtue, typically it is pain causes change in my life. Tobacco is a rare exception to that “rule” in changing things for the better. It was something that I don’t think was going to take me out anytime real soon like the drugs or even alcohol. I suspect I could have lingered along in poor health and obesity with an always deminishing lung capacity for along time. The sad thing about that is I wouldn’t have even known how incredibly different life could be, I’m reminded of that old Pink Floyd tune “Comfortably Numb” now. I remember being about 3 months sober and running into a guy that had been sober for over 20 years that I had known a long time, he said to me ” Mark, it’s great to see you coming around, see the color in your face return, your eyes getting brighter, and you are starting to smile more too. As good as you might be feeling right now don’t even think about settling for what you have today. Your life can change in ways that you can’t even fathom if you will keep doing the work.” That lesson has played out in my life many times over. The things in my life today couldn’t have even been thought of before, they weren’t even on any distant radar screen. Stopping smoking was the one of the greatest things that I have experienced in my life. It has become an “arms wide open” to life and possibilities type of experience that I couldn’t have even dreamed five years ago!
Check out this link: http://www.americashealthrankings.org/OK/2012
My state, Oklahoma ranks Number 47 in smoking.
I love my state, I love the quality of life that I get to enjoy in Oklahoma too. I can tell you this, for that 23.7% of the population that still smokes, your quality of life can change in ways that you can not even fathom by simply stop smoking.
Tunes for today, how about a little Pink Floyd?