Wow! Day number five and no Copenhagen. Not something that I ever really thought that I would hear myself say (or type).
It all started for me about 30 years ago on a baseball field, and other than a brief break for basic training when I joined the military, it has been a constant companion. Getting to the point where I was going thru almost 2 cans a day.
Of course, I said some pretty silly things along the way.
- "Honey, of course I am going to stop before we get married. You are that important to me."
- "I know I didn't stop before we got married, but why were you wanting to change me? Don't you love me for who I am"
- "Of course I will stop before we have kids. I would never want them to see me with it."
- "It's a girl, she is not going to pick up this habit."
- "Of course I will stop before our second child is born."
- "Oh thank God, another girl. No reason to stop." (never really said that one out loud, but certainly thought it.)
- "You know that I am going to stop before baby # 3. I know I said it before, but I mean it this time."
- "Score!!!!! It's a girl. That's number three. No boys means no one to pick up this nasty habit. See, God does not have a problem with my habit. If he did, he would have given me a boy to make me stop"
Then, reality hits. My birthday was Nov. 16th. On Tuesday the 15th we celebrated as family since my wife would be working the next night. She made a great dinner. As soon as I finished eating, I went to the kitchen to get a pinch, and then returned to the table while everyone else finished eating. Then, the girls (ages 6, 4, 2) wanted cake. They just could not understand why I was letting them eat my cake without eating any myself. It was because I did not want to take my dip out. My 4 year old ask me if I was not eating cake so that I could lose some weight so that I would be around until I was 99....
The next day I was on the road all day with plenty of time to sit and think about another birthday and what my 4 year old said the night before. Naturally, as I drove I was enjoying the relaxing effects of yet another pinch between the cheek and gum. As I drove and thought about what was said and prayed about my upcoming day something odd started to happen.
First, I admitted to myself that I was one selfish butt head. Always concerned about me, not my family. How can someone go for the last 8 years with no life insurance because he did not want to pay the smokers rate? How much time have I stolen from my girls in the past and in the future because of my addiction? And why in the heck is this Copenhagen starting to taste like crap as I drive. I probably went through 2 cans that day because I would put in a dip and then throw it out because it did not taste good.
By the time that I got home that night and got the girls in bed, it was obvious that I was going to make a change. I was going to cut back, and spend more time with my family. Then, it got wierd. I woke up the next morning as usual and started my routine. I was about 3 hours into the day before I realized that I had not had my morning pinch as soon as I had brushed my teeth. Then it occurred to me.... "YOU IDIOT!!!!!! Just stop already!!!!!" So I started searching for resources and came across this site. After reading for a couple of hours, I went around the house collecting cans (empty and full), cups and anything else Copenhagen related. (even a couple of belt buckles, a flask, and a few tin lids.) It all went into the trash and I felt a weight lifted off of my back.
Now it has been five days and I still haven't had that morning pinch yet. There have been a few moments where if I had it, I would have done it, but there hasn't been anything that I couldn't handle. I finally told my wife what I was doing yesterday. So many times I had told her that I was going to quit and then never even made an effort. So instead, I got it going on my own and then told her about it. She is very proud and even a little shocked that I am handling things so well so far.
I will continue to be thankful for my family and pray that God allows me to make up for lost time together, and that he continues to give me the strength to kick this thing.......