The story of me, m1.6 (month 1, question #6)

What is a bad habit you are proud that you have overcome? How did you do it?

I am a recovering drug addict, I have 10 years (my clean date is Sept. 2, 2006) clean from drugs (illegal and prescription) and alcohol. I also was addicted to gambling, I have not gambled since August of 2009. I was addicted to written pornography and have not read any since May of 2013. I quit drinking coffee in late March of 2014. But the habit that was the most difficult to quit was smoking cigarettes.

I was arrested on Sept 1, 2006 and spent 10 days in jail, that is how I got clean from drugs and alcohol. I just never picked any back up after I got out of jail. (I got a lot of help in this initially from Sebastian county Drug Court testing me 3 times a week). Soon after that I became a member of my 12 step program, started working steps and developed a relationship with Heavenly Father. This relationship is what helped me not pick up drugs after that and to quit gambling. Heavenly Father led me back to reading the Book of Mormon and going to church in early 2013 and those things are what gave me the strength to stop reading pornography and stop drinking coffee.

The cigarettes though, they were tough. I knew for 1 1/2 to 2 years before I was finally able to quit on 2 Oct 2013 that it was God’s will for me to quit. I tried all kinds of things, I tried vaping, I tried tapering off, I quit for a few days or a few hours a hundred times or more. I was so afraid that I was never going to be able to stop.

Finally, I set myself a quit date Sept 2, 2013. I got a priesthood blessing from some of the gentlemen from the ARP meeting I attended. I only smoked 1 cigarette on the 2nd, then 2 on the 3rd then 4 on the 4th, then I was smoking a pack a day again. The two missionaries assigned to our ward visited my family pretty regularly back then. They told me about the churches smoking cessation program and I agreed to participate. We set the date for Monday night of Oct 1st. I wanted to not smoke before they came over and we did the program, but that didn’t work, I smoked 2 cigarettes that day, the last one about 30 minutes before Elder Phelps and Elder Gulbranson came to my house. They had told me to buy orange juice and cinnamon mouth wash, I did. When they came over, the first thing I did was sign a declaration of independence from smoking for myself. I signed and agreed that I would not smoke any more. Even while I was signing it, I was afraid that I was not going to be able to do it. They went over with me that as soon as I get up in the morning, instead of smoking a cigarette, I should brush my teeth and use the mouthwash. Then drink lots of water and orange juice to get the nicotine out of my system as quickly as possible. They gave me these silly little sayings the put up all over the house. They said things like “1 puff will take you back to a pack a day”, etc. Then at the end the Elders gave me a priesthood blessing, and during that blessing, I felt things just change, or line up or I don’t know how to explain it, but at that moment I just knew that I never had to smoke another cigarette, and I haven’t!! It is amazing. I was so scared that I was never going to be able to let them go and today sometimes I forget that I really smoked for that long.



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