Posted on 11/16/2017 at 10:49 AM by Troy Cummings
"What is your reason to Quit" was previously asked in a blog post.
Here is another reason to quit.
I remember when The Great American Smokeout first began in the 70’s. In September of 1977, I had my first child and I remember trying to convince my husband to quit smoking for the day. As a child, I grew up around smoke. My dad smoked 3 packs of Chesterfield straights every day. By the time I was a teenager, my oldest brother and I experimented with them but I would find myself gagging on them as he showed me how to inhale.
In October of 1983, my Dad ended up in the hospital with a heart attack. The doctor called us all into a room to tell us he experienced several heart attacks over the years and damage had been done to his heart. Back in the 80’s, the only thing they could do is try the balloon opening up his heart valve. The doctor wanted him to start walking 3-5 miles a day and lose 50 lbs in order to do the surgery, which he did. However, in October 27 of 1984, my dad died of a massive heart attack. Medics were unable to revive him or get his heart started. He was only 53 years old.
My brother quit smoking over the next couple of years, but my husband? Nope. I couldn’t convince him. In November of 2003, my husband started losing weight. We went to the doctor and were told he had pneumonia. We went back a couple weeks later because he was still not feeling any better. The doctor gave him another round of antibiotics which now took us into the month of December. Out of breath and still not feeling well, we went back to the doctor and did another set of X-rays. This time we found out he had Stage 4 Emphysema, a form of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD). Now he was on an inhaler and we had to bring oxygen into the house. We would get thru Christmas and New Years and then back to the doctor for more medicine.
In February of 2004, Dave woke up in the middle of the night and thought he was having a heart attack. We went to the emergency room and they admitted him. Two days later he was released and told there was no issue with his heart. I was beside myself. We changed doctors to try and get an answer. He woke up in May 2004 to find his arm had doubled the size. We went back to the doctor for a CT scan; Lung cancer. I will never forget those words. Stage 4. Without chemotherapy and radiation; he had two weeks. With chemotherapy they gave him 10 months to live. He took the 10 months and we made the best of it, praying he would make it long enough to walk our oldest daughter down the aisle the following September. He never got to walk her down the aisle. He passed away 10 months to the day on March 31, 2005 at the age of 47.
Why quit? Quit for you. Quit for your family. Quit for life, to enjoy it to the fullest. Quit so your loved ones never have to go through what we went through. Quit to enjoy the “dance”, to watch your children grow, graduate, get married and to enjoy those beautiful gifts in life called “grandchildren”.
Good luck to anyone and everyone facing life’s challenges as we try to be better and healthier not only for us, but for the ones we so dearly love. Any change in our lifestyle habits are difficult, whether it be for The Great American Smokeout or for something else, but the rewards can be so much greater.
Written by Patti Cole, Driver Manager