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Dec. 28th, 2007

 

 

"If Chew Was as Deadly as You

Claim, The Government

Would Not Sell It!"

________________________________________

 

Whenever I do my first day slide presentation, members of the audience often openly express this sentiment. We explain how chewing causes heart disease, cancers, circulatory conditions, many other deleterious conditions. We go on further to claim that tobacco cessation is the number one most preventable cause of death in the United States, causing an excess of 434,000 premature deaths yearly. This is more deaths than those caused by all accidents, infectious diseases including AIDS, murders, suicides, diabetes, atherosclerosis, kidney disease and liver disease combined. More Americans will die this year from tobacco use than all the Americans killed in 24 years of battle deaths from World War I, World War II, the Korean War and the Viet Nam War, combined!

 

These statistics are staggering. Many chewers assume that if chew was this dangerous it would not be allowed legally on the market. Chemicals like cyclamates, red dyes and other carcinogens are pulled off the shelf. Chew is sold, so it must be safer. People thus suspect that my figures must be greatly exaggerated. In response to this skepticism, let me explain that these figures originate with the United States Surgeon General's Reports. Since 1964, these reports have been produced annually by the government's office of Health and Human Services. The reports review all studies and available information, not only from America but from all over the world. The general consensus for over 20 years of accumulated data is that tobacco is a killer.

 

Some people assume that the government is exaggerating how deadly tobacco is. This is not very likely. If the government was going to mislead the public on the dangers of chewing, it would be denying the dangers, not exaggerating them. The United States Government has had a strong vested interest in tobacco production and dissemination. In 1984 tax revenues generated from tobacco products exceeded 6 billion dollars annually. The government owned close to one billion dollars of surplus tobacco. Even with this strong vested interest, the report that year claimed that over 300,000 Americans died prematurely from tobacco use that previous year.

 

Before 1964, the U.S. Government did not issue much information about the dangers of chewing. Other developed countries without vested interests were warning their citizens of the inherent dangers of chew & cigarettes. Today, the evidence is so conclusive that the government recognizes its obligation to report the facts. The United States government, medical associations, and the general world-wide medical community all agree that tobacco is lethal.

 

Consider this information when confronted with what some ads call the tobacco controversy. The only controversy is with the tobacco industries. They claim their product is harmless and offers great advantages to their customers who use it. This “harmless” product is everything but harmless. It is addictive. It is expensive. It is deadly.

 

Joel

 

© Joel Spitzer 1984, 2000

Page last updated by Joel Spitzer on August 25, 2003

 

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Dec. 28th, 2007

 

 

Reasons People Want to Quit Chewing

________________________________________

 

During my almost 30 years of being involved with chewing cessation education, chewers have given a multitude of reasons for wanting to stop chewing. Many needed to stop for medical purposes. This isn't surprising considering that over 400,000 Americans die every year from diseases caused by tobacco. Among the more common ailments directly caused by chewing are: heart disease, cancers, strokes, peripheral vascular diseases, ulcers and others. In addition, treatment of preexisting conditions can be complicated by chewing. Risk of anesthesia and post-operative complications are increased by use of tobacco.

 

Social pressure is another major reason for quitting. Chewing is now viewed as smelly, offensive and disgusting by non-chewers as well as by many of the over 50 million ex-tobacco users in our country. While tobacco use was once thought to be sophisticated, people who chew today are scorned by many of their peers. Some chewers now feel that they appear lacking in self control and looked down upon for not having the intelligence to quit. Some wish to quit chewing to set a positive example for their children.

 

The expense of chewing is another major reason. Many remember saying, “If chew ever reaches $2.00 a can, I will quit!” Now chew is approaching triple that amount and these same people have continued to chew. A chewing couple can be motivated to quit when realizing they are spending in excess of $4,000 a year to maintain their addiction.

 

Many of my clinic participants have quit chewing previously for a substantial period of time and returned to chewing. When they were free from chew they felt healthier, calmer, and happier. But lack of understanding allowed them to tempt a dip. This resulted in reinforcement of their full fledged addiction. They come to the clinic ready to reestablish their lifestyle as an ex-chewer. While people come to us for a variety of reasons, most have one basic motivation in common. They need help to quit chewing. They know the dangers, hassles, and expense but still cannot stop.

 

Chewing tobacco is an addiction. It is imperative to remember that once you are an addict, you are always an addict. Once you are off chewing for a short period of time, staying off is relatively easy. You will have occasional thoughts for a chew, but they are nothing compared to the urges encountered from withdrawal during the early quitting process. But you must always keep in mind that one dip will put you back to a state of full fledged dependency. Then you will either have to go back to chewing or once again go through quitting. Those are both lousy options. Think of both of them whenever you consider taking a dip!

 

Joel

 

© Joel Spitzer 1982, 2000

Page last updated by Joel Spitzer on August 25, 2003

 

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Thursday, January 4th 2007 .........................

 

That day was like any other in my life. A few weeks before that, I'd made a New Years Resolution I would quit. Of course, that never happened. Four days into 2007 and I was still getting up in the morning and grabbing for my can. But on that morning for some reason I didn't want it. It could've been because I didn't have any cash on me or that my van was being repaired. Maybe .. it's because I wanted to see how many hours I could quit. Maybe I just wanted to look in the mirror for once without having a huge bulge of dip in my mouth or maybe .. just maybe I wanted my boys not to see their mom sneaking around; taking time away from them for a dip. I'm not sure what it was that day. It could have been a combination of all those and more. But some thing, some how, some reason made me realize I don't need this in my life anymore.

 

Mostly men are here at the site. Some dipped in front of family, friends and peers and some were closet dippers like myself yet I felt like the men always had an advantage over me. The men who were closet dippers could still come out to family, friends and co-workers, if they wanted to, and say "I used to dip but now I'm quit. I'm finding it hard to concentrate, sleep or whatever the distress was." Female ex-dippers aren't that fortunate, at least in my case I feel that way. Always called not "the type" who dipped. Well, .. what freakin' type was I? Addiction doesn't discriminate. It'll take a hold of you and won't let go, .. whatever the cost maybe.

 

I was embarrassed when I dipped and was equally as embarrassed when I quit. Who was I going to tell? Who was I going to share my experiences with? My milestones and accomplishments were only recognized by me or this site. My husband and boys never talk about my addiction or how well I was doing. They don't dare discuss my quit, in fear that doing so, might make me think about my former lifestyle and force me to get a can. I would be so excited to tell my husband, "It's 50, 75, 100 days for me!" His replied would be, "That's great, Honey. So proud of you!" then continue the conversation but change the topic totally. I felt like it didn't matter. I confronted him about it and that's where I learned that it was a hush hush type thing. Don't talk about the secret and act like it never happened. I know I can't force someone to see or feel what it's like not to be the prisoner of ones own addiction. I suppose after all those times of me telling him I was quit and then finding out that I wasn't, had finally caught up to me. It's like the fable we read to our children, The Boy That Cried Wolf. The moral: "Even when liars tell the truth, they are never believed. The liar will lie once, twice, and then perish when he tells the truth." I think I resent myself because I haven't been able to enjoy my quit because of all the lies I told about my addiction. Not just to my husband, but so family and friends would never find out.

 

It makes me cherish what I have here and the friends that I have made. Positive, encouraging words are everything to the one who reads them. Sometimes you touch a persons life by just saying a few simple words like ... I believe in you! You see, no one believed I could accomplish this. They believed I would falter and be a disappointment once more. I'm the only one to blame for this.

 

We may never see one another face to face but you have helped me endure everything so far, ... every moment, every second of this quit. I don't know if there will ever come a day I can admit to the ones around me for 20+ years I used to dip Copenhagen. Maybe that time will never come. That's ok. I have you and others to lean on for encouragement and support in my fight to stay quit.

 

Each of you will never truly understand how much you've made a difference in my life!

One day I hope, .. I can return the favor and make a difference in yours.

 

-mylilsecret

Day 365

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Feb. 19th, 2008

 

 

Rob here with our daily read from whyquit.com. This one hits home for me. I started chewing at age 12 and chewed for 9 years and then quit for seven years and started up again and ended up chewing for another ten years. When I caved, I remember how I had started fixating on that chew months before I took it. Before I knew it, I had made that chew sound pretty damn good. I romanticized the thought of how good it would feel, how undeniably satisfying to just take one chew. And I never thought about the fact that if I chewed again, I would again become addicted. I never thought about the fact that it could take ten years and over ten thousand dollars until I muster the courage to quit again. No, I only thought about that one chew. Low and behold, I took that one chew and yes, it took me ten years to quit again. For me, one chew is too many and a hundred is not enough.

 

Do yourself a favor and don’t allow the inner battle to start as to whether it will be easier, or okay, to just take one more chew. You are dealing with the most powerful drug known to man. You can’t win that battle. See it for what it is…it is never just one chew. It is something that will enslave you and ultimately kill you.

 

Rob

Fixating on a Chew

 

What happens to some people is that when they are off chewing for a certain time period they start fixating on a chew. By that I mean they forget all the bad chewing tobacco they ever chewed, they forget the ones they chewed without ever really thinking about them even at the time they were being chewed, and they start to remember and focus on one good chew. It may be one they chewed 20 years earlier but it was a good one and they now want one again.

 

It's a common tactic for the ex-Chewers to try and tell themselves that they do not really want that "good" chew. Well, the problem is, at that moment they really do want it. An internal debate erupts, "I want one, no I don't, one sounds great, no it doesn't, oh just one, not just one!" The problem is that if the ex-Chewer's focus is on just "one" chew then there is no clear-cut winning side to the debate. The ex-Chewer needs to change the internal discussion.

 

Don't say that you don’t want one when you do, rather acknowledge the desire but ask yourself, "Do I want all the other chewing tobacco that goes along with it? Then, do I want the canage deal that goes with the others - the expense, social stigma, smell, health effects, possible loss of life? Do I want to go back to chewing, full-fledged, until it cripples and kills me?"

 

Stated like this it normally is not a back and forth debate. The answer will normally be, "No, I don’t want to chew under these terms," and those are the only terms that a chew comes with.

 

Normally if viewed like this the debate is over almost immediately after being pulled into focus. Again, if the focus is only one, you can drive yourself nuts throughout the entire day. If you focus on the whole canage deal, you will walk away from the moment relieved to still be chew free and sufficiently reinforced.

 

Joel Spitzer

 

© Joel Spitzer 2002

 

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June 24th, 2008

 

 

Have an awesome tobacco-free and nic-free day!

Rob aka Indy

 

He Will Quit When He "Bottoms Out!"

________________________________________

 

It used to be a belief that when dealing with drug addictions, such as alcoholism or illegal drug abuse, the addict had to "bottom out" before realizing the need for help. Bottoming out meant life became so complicated and unmanageable that the abuser would finally see that there was no other alternative except to quit drugs or lose everything and everyone close to him. What types of situations would precipitate an addict to come to such a realization? Things so severe as losing a family, career, health, or maybe even ending up homeless or in jail.

 

All these occurrences are traumatic and should be considered life shattering experiences. However given a lot of time, support and professional assistance, the addict can often regain some semblance of a normal lifestyle. Many even feel that living through such an experience gives them a real love of life and sobriety that they could never have fully appreciated without having survived such devastating experiences. As long as bottoming out doesn't entail loss of life, there is always some hope for rectifying the problems the drugs brought on and maybe coming out stronger than they were before drugs became a part of their lives.

 

Chewers, too, are drug addicts. Unfortunately, some chewers are content with the idea of waiting to bottom out before making a drastic move like quitting chewing. Until then they feel that their lives are quite manageable. When things get bad enough they believe they will quit with relative ease. While this sort of logic has been known to work with other drug dependencies, there is a major flaw in approaching chewing in this manner.

 

Bottoming out experiences for chewers are not normally correctable by time. Chewers generally won't lose their families from chewing. They probably won't lose their job, and they probably won't end up homeless and penniless trying to support their addiction. They won't end up in jail for chewing, and they will never be committed to treatment without their own consent. So what kind of incident is likely to be considered bottoming out for the chewer?

 

Diagnosis is the most common way chewers bottom out--diagnosis of a disease like cancer, heart disease or high blood pressure. While quitting upon diagnosis may improve chances of survival, a lot of irreparable damage is already done. Waiting for a diagnosis of cancer or circulatory disease as the bottoming out experience may cost the chewer his or her life. In fact, some chewers never have the opportunity to bottom out. The first discernible symptom for these chewers is sudden death which is not the bottoming out experience the chewer was likely counting on.

 

Many who quit before bottoming out recognize that they feel physically and emotionally better than they have in years and truly do appreciate the health and self esteem improvements. Those who quit should be proud of their accomplishment. They quit before they had to, and they will derive the greatest benefits for having taken that action.

 

For those who are waiting for that magic moment when they know it is time, be forewarned. You may not have the strength to quit at that time; you may not get the desire to quit in time; and, most importantly, you may not have the opportunity to quit in time. Last year, over 400,000 Americans died prematurely waiting for the right time. They never found it. Don't feel the need to wait for some unforeseen inspiration. Quit now before you have to.

 

Joel – P141

© Joel Spitzer 1989, 2000

Page last updated by Joel Spitzer on August 25, 2003

 

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July 9th, 2008

 

 

People ask me often why I continue to log in nearly EVERY day to this web site posting my daily quit day. This article is the premise for this commitment I have to this site. In part, I want to be here for the newcomer who needs the encouragement to not take that chew. The flip side is I need to remind myself where I have come from and reaffirm my resolve for today to not take a dip. Thus, I am here today.

 

Have a great nic-free day

Rob aka Indy

 

“I'm Not Going to Chew Today!”

________________________________________

 

During the quitting process, you most likely woke up thinking of this concept, either with great determination or incredible trepidation. Either way, it was imperative that you aimed a high degree of focus at this lofty goal. The incredible cravings elicited by the addiction required that you had all the motivation and ammunition to squelch the seemingly irresistible need to take a chew. Whether or not you understood it, immediately reaffirming your goal not to chew upon waking was crucial during your initial quitting phase.

 

The fact is, restating the simple concept of "not chewing today" is not only important when you first quit. You should restate this upon waking for the rest of your life. Each day you should start with "I'm not going to chew today." Equally important, each day you should end congratulating yourself and feeling a sense of pride and accomplishment for achieving your worthwhile goal.

 

For even years and decades after successful cessation, every day you continue to breathe and think, relapse to chewing remains an inherent risk. The addiction to nicotine is as powerful as the addiction to alcohol or any illicit drug. The habituation of chewing permeated almost every area of your day to day existence. You may allow complacency to fill the void left by your old addiction and habits by disregarding the monumental effort and achievement which accompanied overcoming them. Complacency causes your guard to drop and you may begin to forget the reasons you wanted to quit. You will no longer recognize the many vast improvements in the quality of your physical, social and economic well being which accompanied chewing cessation.

 

Then, one day when chewing seemed to be a part of an obscure past which had no real relevance to your current status, a thought for a chew is accompanied by an opportunity to "innocently" reach for one. Maybe it is under an insignificant social circumstance, or maybe a major life crisis. Either way, all the elements seem to be in place. Motive, cause and opportunity are present, reasoning and knowledge of addiction are conspicuously absent. A dip is taken.

 

New rules are now in place. Your body demands nicotine. A preordained process is now set in motion, and, even if you don't realize what has happened, a drug relapse has occurred. The wants and desire to take back the action are overpowered by the body's demand for nicotine. You will have no control of the physiological process set in action. Soon your mind bows to your body's dictates.

 

You will very likely feel great regret and remorse. An overriding feeling of failure and guilt will haunt you. You will soon find yourself longing for the days when you had hardly thought of chew at all. But those days will slowly become a fading past image. Weeks, months or even decades may pass before you once again muster the resolve to attempt a serious quitting process. Sadly, you may never again have the appropriate strength, initial motivation, or, tragically, the opportunity to quit again. A terminal diagnosis or sudden death may preclude the well-intentioned future attempt that may never have a chance to be realized.

 

Don't take the chance of becoming entrapped in this kind of tragic and dismal scenario. Actively strive to successfully remain chew free and maintain all the associated perks—the physical, emotional, economic, professional and social benefits of not being an active chewer. Always start your day off with the statement "I won't chew today." Always end your day with a self-affirmation and sense of pride and accomplishment for once again winning your daily battle over your addiction. P 154

 

Joel

 

© Joel Spitzer 1996, 2000

Page last updated by Joel Spitzer on November 29, 2002

 

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Aug. 3rd, 2008

 

 

Never Give Up

 

Remember to never give up and never have doubt.

Those ups and downs is what life’s all about.

 

You try and try your absolute best

and somehow struggle like all the rest.

At times it seems you just can’t do it.

Yet all it takes is putting your mind to it.

 

The mistakes that you might make along the way,

create a stronger person to defeat another day.

You see, no one can tell you the steps you must take.

Whether right or wrong; it’s the choices you make.

 

Believe in yourself and all the power that you hold.

Aspirations are created by the young and the old.

But it has to start here and it has to start now.

Of course you’re sitting there wondering how?

 

It begins when you set this extraordinary example for others.

Yes, strangers at first; end up quit sisters and brothers.

Maybe you’re struggling addiction and needing some belief.

Simply asking for help begins your journey towards relief.

 

Quitting means you want this. It’s coming from the heart.

Don’t wait until tomorrow when right now you can start.

If you take this chance. I’d promise you’ll see

You’re not alone. You’re standing with me.

 

mylilsecret

© 2008

 

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Aug 18th, 2008

 

 

So What's the Danger?

Just like smoking cigarettes, chewing smokeless tobacco can eventually rip apart your body and kill you. It's that simple, really. There's no such thing as a "safe" tobacco product.

Take Bill Tuttle, for example. An outfielder for the Detroit Tigers, the Kansas City Athletics (before they moved to Oakland), and the Minnesota Twins, Tuttle chewed tobacco for most of his career. In fact, a lot of Tuttle's baseball cards over the years pictured him with a cheek bulging with chewing tobacco. Thirty-eight years after the end of his baseball career, Tuttle had a more ominous bulge in his cheek - a huge tumor that was so big that it came through his cheek and extended through his skin. Doctors removed the tumor, along with much of Tuttle's face. Chewing tobacco as a young man had cost him his jawbone, his right cheekbone, a lot of his teeth and gum line, and his taste buds. Cancer caused by his chewing habit finally claimed him in 1998, but Tuttle spent the rest of his life trying to steer young people, as well as grown athletes, away from smokeless tobacco.

Other baseball players have met a similar fate. Even one of the greatest of all time, Babe Ruth, was fond of dipping and chewing tobacco. He died at age 52 of an oropharyngeal tumor, which is a cancerous tumor in the back part of the throat.

But, of course, it isn't just baseball players who learn to regret their choice to start chewing tobacco. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, each year, about 30,000 Americans learn they have mouth and throat cancers, and nearly 8,000 Americans die of these diseases. Sadly, only about half of people with diagnosed mouth or throat cancer survive more than 5 years.

What Can Chewing Tobacco Do to Me?

The more immediate effects can disrupt your social life: bad breath and yellowish-brown stains on your teeth. You'll also get mouth sores (about 70% of spit tobacco users have them). But, it gets a lot more serious than that. Consequences of chewing and spitting tobacco include:

• cracking and bleeding lips and gums

• receding gums, which can eventually make your teeth fall out

• increased heart rate, high blood pressure, and irregular heartbeats, all leading to a greater risk of heart attacks and brain damage (from a stroke)

• cancer

Oral cancer means cancer of the mouth and can happen in the lips, the tongue, the floor of the mouth, the roof of the mouth, the cheeks, or gums. It's been medically proven that long-time use of chewing tobacco can lead to cancer. But cancer from chewing tobacco doesn't just occur in the mouth. Some of the cancer-causing agents in the tobacco can get into the lining of your stomach, your esophagus, and into your bladder.

 

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Aug. 18th, 2008

 

 

Read and heed folks. This is a powerful addiction we face.

Rob aka Indy

Day 1,007

 

“Things were just so bad at work that I took a chew!”

________________________________________

 

 

This sentiment was expressed to me by a clinic participant who had successfully broken free from their nicotine addiction . I then asked him if he had had a loaded gun in his possession at the time things were so bad, would he have put it to his head and pulled the trigger. Without a moment of hesitation, he responded, "Of course not!", as if I had just asked a ridiculous question. "Then if the problems were not worth shooting yourself for, they were not worth chewing for either", I replied.

 

While on the surface the analogy may seem a bit exaggerated, looking at the particular case history reveals that the risk this man was facing by returning to chewing could easily cost him his life.

 

Five months prior to this "catastrophic time at work" he suffered a severe heart attack. Fortunately, he survived and six weeks after returning home from the hospital he enrolled in our clinic to quit chewing. He had been chewing a can per day and had been a chewer for over 33 years. To his surprise, he quit with what seemed to be minimal difficulty. He successfully remained off chew for three months. In that time, though, he gained close to 30 pounds. While 30 pounds is a lot of weight to gain, he understood fully why his weight had increased. He ate more. A lot more.

 

But he was so concerned about not returning to chewing that he figured if eating would prevent chewing, then 30 pounds was worth it. Technically, he was correct. The strain produced on his heart from 30 pounds of extra weight was nothing compared to the risk of chewing 15 dips per day. He was preparing to find a weight control program to address the weight gain problem.

 

But now this problem at work caused him to take a chew. He thought it would only be "one" to help over the initial crisis. He failed to understand the basic rule of addiction. There is no such thing as one. Not one dip, one chew, or one can. All of these will lead to the same end result. ONE ADDICTION. A powerful addiction. An addiction which could make an ex-chewer of 30 years return to his full past level of consumption within 24 hours. Because he didn't understand this most important rule, he broke it. And now he was chewing again and couldn't seem to quit.

 

Now the analogy between taking a chew and pulling the trigger becomes quite realistic. While his 30 pounds were insignificant compared to chewing, now he was going to return to his old level of chew consumption and be 30 pounds heavier. All this within 6 months after a heart attack. Adding all this up, he became a walking time bomb.

 

While you may not have all of his risk factors, returning to chewing still may be the decisive factor in a heart attack, cancer or any number of tragic illnesses chewing causes. You are now free from your addiction. Don't let a major crisis, a trivial stress, a party, a drink or any other situation let you make the same mistake. Stay free from chews—NEVER TAKE ANOTHER DIP!

 

Joel

 

© Joel Spitzer 1984, 2000

Page last updated by Joel Spitzer on August 23, 2003

 

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Oct. 2nd 2008

 

 

Most, .. if not all who chose to quit dipping do so in fear of cancer and ultimately their fear of death from their addiction.

 

 

- Imagine being twelve and your first dip. Dad lets you do it around the garage with him as you tinker with his tools pretending to help. Pretty cool, huh?

 

- Imagine being fifteen and your friends start hanging out at your house 'cause it's okay to dip around your parents. Heck, most of their parents haven't a clue about the dipping ritual that happens after school.

 

- Imagine being nineteen and working with your father at his business. Both still dipping and enjoying the conversations you spend because you feel a connection, even if it has to do with dip.

 

- Imagine finding your first sore, gums raw but you still keep using. Dad says its happened to him but it'll go away. So you pack it to the other side of your mouth. It feels somewhat less painful that way.

 

- Imagine being twenty-one and the birth of your first and only son. Dipping the whole time your wife is in labor. So nervous but you need dip to take that edge off. Asking the nurses for a cup to spit into. Holding your son after birth, but in the back of your mind you know that you need to get another can since you're out.

 

- Imagine being twenty-seven and your now six yr old son wants to go hunting with you like he has many times before but you tell him he can't go. Unable to tell him why since there's going to be alcohol and a little party later at a friends house. Your son cries not understanding why Daddy won't take him hunting. You promise to take him real soon. Maybe next weekend. He pouts some but you're able to scoot out the door without him noticing.

 

- Imagine hunting while drinking some beer. Later on you're at a friends house you've known since grade school. You play a little poker and get somewhat carried away with the shots and liquor being passed around.

 

- Imagine feeling a bit dizzy and resting on the couch since the room won't stop spinning. Some time later others pass by and laugh 'cause your drunker than shit. They believed you have passed out since they hear you snoring.

 

- Imagine being so intoxicated to the point that you've swallow your snuff. What they believe was snoring was actually you gasping for air yet since you've been drinking, you're unable to move and get help .. you die .. not from cancer .. but from choking on your wad of dip.

 

Now imagine leaving behind your wife and son, mother, father and sister. Leaving behind your friends and one of the girls (me) who played truth or dare and was dared to kiss you. We were fourteen. (the time I started dipping secretly)

 

Imagine now, if cancer's truly the only culprit that can lead to your death.

 

This true story happened to a good friend of mine. Someone with a kind heart but just was stupid to think that he wasn't addicted. To proud thinking he was invincible to cancer and death. Yet sadly he died by asphyxiation.

 

He's gone by just a single dip!

 

-mylilsecret/Nickie

 

Rest in peace, Jay Archibald! I hope you're death wasn't in vain and by telling your story will help someone take that first step to quit.

 

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Without a doubt MLS you are the toughest Quitter I have ever known. I am so indebted to you, much of my success I owe to you. Thank You

 

 

How will you remember Tuesday, January 20, 2009?

 

I’m sure most of you started out the day like any other; rushing to get that morning ritual done before work. Knowing today was going to be different since history for the first time was in the making! Yet I was utterly clueless to what today’s history lesson for me I'd face. First let me assure you that it had absolutely nothing to do with or about our 44th President, Barack Obama being sworn in as our Commander and Chief.

 

It was actually going to come down to little ‘ole history lesson and me. It seems I only have horrific news to share with you which leads me to not share it at all. I mean blah, blah, blah what’s the sense of hearing someone’s woes? All negative without a grain of something positive makes for a huge case of DRAMA. And who wants to read such chaos of life; especially when it has to deal with someone else. Everyone endures such times. Don’t get me wrong I am grateful for everything I have but it would seem nice not have such constant misfortunes, you know? Think positive, Nickie! Positive!

 

Anyways, I was in the hospital for a week with pneumonia and my hematologist caught a blood clot within my leg while I was there – low potassium and magnesium. Umm, ever have needles around your belly button? Let’s say it’s a not a walk in the park. It’s shots of heparin to thin my blood in order to dissolve the clot. Then the antibiotics that I was receiving I had an allergic reaction to. (nice rash) It took two attempts but finally there was one that I could use without having to play connect the dots. (small joke – I’ll letcha laugh!) I went in on Monday, Jan 12th and was released Friday the 16th.

 

The school never sent flowers so I felt that was somewhat strange. However, Friday late afternoon I did received flowers at the hospital after I was discharged. The florist arranged to deliver them to my house. Hmm, 3 carnations – card read: Everglades Elementary. Very impersonal I thought but hell, I was happy to receive something. Better than nothing, right? ”Get well soon“, to me, seemed logical since I was in the hospital, oh well! I’ll hush. Flowers are flowers. Monday, school was out! And I had kept in touch either by Paul or myself calling so they knew I would be returning Tuesday the 20th.

 

Now back to the historic event, mine before President Obama’s.

As soon as I walked into my clinic my desk had been rearranged to fit whoever had felt the need to rearrange it. My children as normal came into the clinic before the bell rings. No sooner had I placed my purse and laptop down I was asked to see the Principal in her office. I assumed the same formality of Dr. Note to return back to work and the usual how are you feeling? I stepped into her office as she closed the door. Ok, this isn’t good. A piece of paper was placed in front of me to read with an, “I’m sorry.”

Just for humor this is the letter I was greeted to after having a clot which might not have been dissolved either entering a lung or my brain. (which school was aware of my condition)

 

January 20, 2009

 

Dear Nicole Lynch,

In order to better meet the needs of (School Name) and the students that we serve, I have recommended that your employment be terminated effective today, January 20, 2009. I anticipate that this will be formally approved by the school board at the February Meeting.

I wish you the best in all of your future endeavors.

 

Sincerely,

My Principal Signature

Her Title

cc: Superintendent of Schools

cc: Personnel File of Nicole Lynch

 

She said sorry about 3 more times and then I had to go into my office during school hours and remove my personal belongings. I used a lot of my own money to purchase Dental and Hygiene Awareness displays. I asked if I could come back because neither staff nor students knew of my termination and at first she stated it was ok but within a few minutes she felt it was better for me to go ahead and get my belongings while I was there. It took me and the principal close to 2 hours to pack everything into my van. I even took my bookcase that was about to fall apart but I took it. I brought it into that facility and I was taking it back.

I felt betrayed. I wasn’t given an explanation as to why. An explanation wasn’t needed since in within their policy the school board has an allotted window and it happens that it’s a 3 year time slot. So for 3 years anyone working for them can be let go without warning and/or without a reason for their termination. I felt humiliated. I take my job very seriously. Last year human resources found out that I was seen at a psychiatric hospital for my bipolar disorder and they have been giving me an extremely harsh time about it. (My husband told them the 3 days I was there; not thinking.) I was a voluntary checked in for mostly talk therapy since there isn’t any available near me. Huge mistake, I now know, since government facilities basically take mental patients off the streets and provide them only their prescription medications. If only I had known. I never would have admitted myself. I had the meds just not the treatment. What a waste of time and now a waste of a job. The union I am with can do very little since the 3 year time slot. But they are still working on it. I know it has to do with my bipolar. I had no problems up until then. Teachers take just as many days if not more for medical or personal. Is it my fault my position requires someone with training (CPR/First Aid) requiring higher pay to sub for me than a normal teaching sub? I never complained even when I didn’t receive my lunch or 15 minute breaks. I did my job.

 

I feel like such a failure. Can I not do anything right? What the hell is wrong with me? I wanted a dip today. Yes, I wanted one. Just to say FUCK YOU world. I called ODT. I told him what does it matter if I just say to hell with it? What does it really matter?

 

I see absolutely no strength within me. I see weakness. I see someone who all her life has been put down. How can I look my children in the face and let them know that it’ll be alright when I am uncertain of the future. I feel so very low. I feel like I do more harm than good. Just once I wish something good could evolve from something bad. And I wish dip wouldn’t be such a factor when I’m down. I live and breathe and I know its better without Copenhagen. I want others to look up to me and say “Hey, look she’s doing it so can I.”

 

But what happens when you are at your lowest ebb?

The more you struggle, ..... the quicker that tide pulls you out ...... the less you see your tranquility within that white sandy beach.

 

Then what? Why make a little bit of history of your own? ...................... Stay quit!

 

I’m looking forward to the warmth of the beach between my toes and a cool margarita! Copenhagen for now will just have to wait! Maybe, just maybe I have a little bit of fight left in me. A little bit of strength to keep moving! A little bit of history left in the making .......................

 

-mls

 

 

**I didn't falter ODT, Timmay and Beav, my big brothers .... I didn't falter! - - I hope you're proud!**

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Feb. 10th, 2009

 

 

The Best Side of All

 

Every coin has two sides.

Every action causes a reaction.

And like every positive there comes a negative.

We wouldn’t be human if we didn’t have one without the other.

 

If we were to never endured pain then we’d never experience the meaning of sweet pleasure. To never falter at weakness; we’d never see how strong our strength would be to rise above an obstacle. To never again feel hurtfulness; we’d never be able to show the desire to care. And the ultimate ... without heartache; we’d have the absence of the greatest gift …… love.

 

Every one of our moments would be taken for granted.

 

Imagine inhaling to whisper, “I love you” softly to someone you adore yet only for them to never understand how deep and heartfelt it truly was meant. Or the very simplicity of touching your child’s hand absolutely would have no value or merit.

 

Who would want to live in such a world?

We all must tolerate the negative in order to be blessed with some positive.

 

This leads me back to the coin, ………………… the HOF coin, that is.

 

At 100 days I really didn’t see why I would need a coin to show those 100 days of my quit. I mean I had been through hell both physically and mentally and buying a coin really didn’t seem to have any significance. But around 600 days, I was looking at it on the site and honestly I’m clueless as to why but I wanted to have it as a symbol, as a reminder I had succeeded in what I and those around me never thought I’d be able to accomplish.

 

I understand now the meaning of the HOF coin. I suppose it didn‘t matter I had waited another 500 days before getting it because I wouldn’t have known the true value of it. I’ve never been so proud until I ran my fingertips over that precious metal. After enduring 22 years of imprisonment to tobacco and 600 some days of being quit I had this tremendous invigorating feeling of triumph and freedom.

 

It’s true every coin has two sides but you see my coin doesn’t.

 

It only has one side … the best side of all .. that I’m quit.

 

-mylilsecret

Day 769

 

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Feb. 16th, 2009

 

 

Have a great nic free day everyone.

Rob aka Indy

 

 

The Caffeine/Nicotine Interaction

 

 

If you feel jittery, extra anxious or are having trouble sleeping after a few days, take a look at your caffeine consumption levels. As shown by the below study, nicotine doubles the rate at which the body depletes caffeine and some caffeine users may find that they cannot tolerate caffeine consumption at pre-quitting levels. If you are feeling extra anxious or jittery you may want to experiment with reducing the quantity or strength of caffeinated drinks or products. If you are not having these difficulties it probably is not important to alter anything now.

 

As previously discussed there is also a nicotine/alcohol interaction. Nicotine is an alkaloid and alcohol an acid generating event within the body. When Chewers drink alcohol it causes them to lose nicotine at an accelerated pace thus resulting in heavier chewing while drinking. Although the situation is similar to caffeine there is one huge difference. Alcohol makes you lose nicotine, thus being responsible for making Chewers chew more when drinking.

 

Nicotine on the other hand interferes with the body's ability to absorb and utilize caffeine, often resulting in a person using more caffeine in order to maintain their minimum needed level. When they quit chewing and continue to consume the exact same amount of caffeine they could find themselves actually overdosing on caffeine.

 

So look closely at caffeine if symptoms persist longer than a few days. You don’t need to get rid of it all together but just keep it in doses that will not cause unwanted effects. Your general state will likely be calmer and you’ll experience a feeling of overall well-being that you should be able to maintain for the rest of your life. P26

 

Whyquit.com

 

 

 

Joel

 

© Joel Spitzer 2002

Edited by Wyoming4life
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Ok Here it is, I've gone through all of Apr 07 and scooped out all of the Rob AKA Indy posts that I could find. Some of them may be duplicated as my eyes have kind of been crossing here at the end. Also included here are some writings by some other folks, most notabley Mylilsecret. They may be archived elsewhere on this site, but I figured they were worth saving here as well. Maybe we can get this moved over to the library so it gets more exposure.

 

If you have something to say, good or bad, about what I have done here please go over to the Apr 07 roll call. That way these great posts don't get covered up and lost again.

 

Thank you to all of the folks who contribute so much to this site, you have saved my quit and my life countless times.

 

John AKA Wyoming4life

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I couldn't agree more with this. I think many people here are struggling because of their caffeine intake more than they realize. The withdrawal makes them want to feel better, but caffeine does not actually make you feel better, it put you in stress response- an adrenal condition that leads to fatigue. I urge you to take your caffeine as you would a prescription drug- write down every miligram you consume and pay attention to your recovery. I have studied read and experimented with this for many years. For example, on week I drank a half a cup upon rising then another at 11AM. I felt fine and slept well each night. Then I added one half cup at 2PM. Each night I could not fall asleep. And I'm talking about a true coffee cup, not the jugs most people drink from. If you are serious about staying quit I urge you to carefully monitor and reduce your caffiene consumption. Because the anxiety caused by caffeine can cause you to want to chew when you otherwise would not even think about it.

Thanks for this great post!

 

Newman

Feb. 16th, 2009

 

 

Have a great nic free day everyone.

Rob aka Indy

 

 

The Caffeine/Nicotine Interaction

 

 

If you feel jittery, extra anxious or are having trouble sleeping after a few days, take a look at your caffeine consumption levels. As shown by the below study, nicotine doubles the rate at which the body depletes caffeine and some caffeine users may find that they cannot tolerate caffeine consumption at pre-quitting levels. If you are feeling extra anxious or jittery you may want to experiment with reducing the quantity or strength of caffeinated drinks or products. If you are not having these difficulties it probably is not important to alter anything now.

 

As previously discussed there is also a nicotine/alcohol interaction. Nicotine is an alkaloid and alcohol an acid generating event within the body. When Chewers drink alcohol it causes them to lose nicotine at an accelerated pace thus resulting in heavier chewing while drinking. Although the situation is similar to caffeine there is one huge difference. Alcohol makes you lose nicotine, thus being responsible for making Chewers chew more when drinking.

 

Nicotine on the other hand interferes with the body's ability to absorb and utilize caffeine, often resulting in a person using more caffeine in order to maintain their minimum needed level. When they quit chewing and continue to consume the exact same amount of caffeine they could find themselves actually overdosing on caffeine.

 

So look closely at caffeine if symptoms persist longer than a few days. You don’t need to get rid of it all together but just keep it in doses that will not cause unwanted effects. Your general state will likely be calmer and you’ll experience a feeling of overall well-being that you should be able to maintain for the rest of your life. P26

 

Whyquit.com

 

 

 

Joel

 

© Joel Spitzer 2002

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I couldn't agree more with this. I think many people here are struggling because of their caffeine intake more than they realize. The withdrawal makes them want to feel better, but caffeine does not actually make you feel better, it put you in stress response- an adrenal condition that leads to fatigue. I urge you to take your caffeine as you would a prescription drug- write down every miligram you consume and pay attention to your recovery. I have studied read and experimented with this for many years. For example, on week I drank a half a cup upon rising then another at 11AM. I felt fine and slept well each night. Then I added one half cup at 2PM. Each night I could not fall asleep. And I'm talking about a true coffee cup, not the jugs most people drink from. If you are serious about staying quit I urge you to carefully monitor and reduce your caffiene consumption. Because the anxiety caused by caffeine can cause you to want to chew when you otherwise would not even think about it.

Thanks for this great post!

 

Newman

Feb. 16th, 2009

 

 

Have a great nic free day everyone.

Rob aka Indy

 

 

The Caffeine/Nicotine Interaction

 

 

If you feel jittery, extra anxious or are having trouble sleeping after a few days, take a look at your caffeine consumption levels. As shown by the below study, nicotine doubles the rate at which the body depletes caffeine and some caffeine users may find that they cannot tolerate caffeine consumption at pre-quitting levels. If you are feeling extra anxious or jittery you may want to experiment with reducing the quantity or strength of caffeinated drinks or products. If you are not having these difficulties it probably is not important to alter anything now.

 

As previously discussed there is also a nicotine/alcohol interaction. Nicotine is an alkaloid and alcohol an acid generating event within the body. When Chewers drink alcohol it causes them to lose nicotine at an accelerated pace thus resulting in heavier chewing while drinking. Although the situation is similar to caffeine there is one huge difference. Alcohol makes you lose nicotine, thus being responsible for making Chewers chew more when drinking.

 

Nicotine on the other hand interferes with the body's ability to absorb and utilize caffeine, often resulting in a person using more caffeine in order to maintain their minimum needed level. When they quit chewing and continue to consume the exact same amount of caffeine they could find themselves actually overdosing on caffeine.

 

So look closely at caffeine if symptoms persist longer than a few days. You don't need to get rid of it all together but just keep it in doses that will not cause unwanted effects. Your general state will likely be calmer and you'll experience a feeling of overall well-being that you should be able to maintain for the rest of your life. P26

 

Whyquit.com

 

 

 

Joel

 

© Joel Spitzer 2002

 

I can't resist.....Reach down between your legs. Quit being a "victim." If you have balls you'll quit. If not...... you'll keep making excuses.

 

- The World According to Truckerick

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