Saturday evening, while playing a game on my computer, I reached out in the dark to grab my mod… and knocked it clean off the coffee table. The tank shattered; and I shorted-out a brand-new coil (which was, unfortunately, my last). I was doomed to be without nicotine for at least fifteen hours, because the vape shop I frequent doesn’t open until noon on Sundays.
The next morning, Mitch timed our gym visit perfectly. We would finish up just in time to land on the front stoop of the vape shop at exactly 12 p.m. (My husband doesn’t like being around me when I’ve been without nicotine for an extended period of time. Its absence tends to make me moody.)
But then? A funny thing happened.
I noticed that my resting heartrate (which the equipment measures when you sit down to start your workout) had fallen fourteen points. It was below 100 beats per minute — something I haven’t seen since I began working out over a month ago. My cardio heartrate (at the height of my workout) dropped six points. I also found that I wasn’t having as difficult a time breathing as I normally do. Sure, my breath was still strained at the peak of my workout; but not nearly as much as it usually is.
As we exited the gym, Mitch said, “Goin’ to see the boys, yeah?” (The vape shop I visit is run by a group of really nice young men that have been there for a long time, and know us well; thus we have dubbed them “the boys.”)
And kind’a to my own surprise, I said, “No? No. Nope, we don’t need to go see the boys.”
“You’re really going to quit?” my husband asked with trepidation.
I told him about my observations in the gym; and said that I honestly wanted to try.
Mitch raised an eyebrow and said, “Okay, on to Walmart for hard candies then.”
So that’s what we did. We went to Walmart and stocked up!
An Addict is an Addict…
Yesterday (out of desperation for a hit), I tried to prove that Sunday’s observations had been a fluke. I went to the gym, determined to see that my resting heartrate was back up over 100 bpm; but it wasn’t. It was maintaining at around 93. Damn it!
I kind of thought my breathing had returned to its former state of more labored; but I was also looking for an excuse to start vaping again (See?! Not smoking really hasn’t made a difference!), so that could have been entirely psychosomatic.
It’s been sixty-three hours — with dozens of hard candies consumed — since I last hit the mod; and I feel like I have bugs crawling under my skin. I want to vape so bad that I can think of little else.
Sunday wasn’t this hard.
Monday wasn’t this hard.
But today? Today, it just f*cking sucks!
Maybe it’s because I realized this morning that I have a spare tank buried away in my supply drawer and know that if I really felt like it, I could jerry-rig the battered coil. (It’s amazing how much ingenuity addicts can harness for a fix. 🤦🏻♀️) I truly could get it to work… and I’m struggling not to.
When Mitch called just a little while ago, I explained how disconnected and agitated I feel (but didn’t mention the tank and suppressed ingenuity). In response, he pointed out that I’m going through withdrawal. He also offered to stop by the shop on his way home from work for new supplies, if I really needed them.
And I want him to… but I also don’t want him to. Ya’ know? Because the absolute truth of the matter is I don’t need nicotine. It’s not like my lungs will suddenly stop working without it; on the contrary, they’re likely to work much better in the absence of my dragon-like vape-cloud inhalations… but goddam it, do I want it.
What In the HELL Was I Thinking?
I don’t know if I can honestly go through life without an active addiction.
Every time I give one up, another one seems to take its place. I gave up pills for booze, booze for food, (some) food for nicotine… and have suffered from a shopping addiction in the past.
I’m tired of my bottomless need for something costing my husband money — especially when I can’t explain why I’m so empty without it (and in truth, am also empty with it).
Honestly? I understand addiction better than most. I know why I am the way I am; but knowing the why of it all doesn’t change what is.
I’m forty-four years old, and don’t know if I have the strength to truly change in this department.
I enjoy smoking. In truth, I always have… but sixty-three hours (without it) is a lot of time to throw away.
I don’t know what I’m going to do…