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I’ve made Day 38; it was too distant to even see on Day 1 but it’s here despite the Day 31 drama. On Day 31 I’d determined that I was smoke free and was going to be so for the rest of my life. I most definitely wasn’t nicotine free though; I’d used NRT (lozenges) to get me smoke free and was still feeding my nicotine addiction with them.
The suggestions I got from this forum ranged from being reminded that the lozenges are a 12-week program so maybe I should just stick with the program, right through to just throwing the lozenges away that day and going cold turkey. I don’t believe I could have become smoke free without those lozenges but they were really harsh on my tongue, mouth, throat, and even stomach – and that’s why I chose immediate cold turkey.
I had not imagined just how badly my body would react to being denied nicotine after 35 years of getting it regularly. A nagging headache crept up. Muscles, and/or bones I didn’t even know I had started to ache. There were pains in my chest, stomach, sides and back. I went from simply dripping sweat to shaking and feeling cold in minutes. On the first night I went to bed at 8pm with a mild sedative to try and sleep through some of it; that resulted in me tossing and turning until about 3.30am the next morning and finally dropping off for an hour or so. There was more, and overall it was cruel. If I’d ever been asked to describe what it might feel like to go cold turkey off a serious drug like heroin, it would have been something close to what I did experience with nicotine.
Despite the physical issues, and the small bouts of depression and anxiety, I was simply too far down the track to fall off the rails. I fought those withdrawal symptoms in every way I could and although they certainly haven’t disappeared, they are easing off significantly. I’m thinking of making Day 50 the next milestone.
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