Ok, I'll try.
1. My biggest fear when quitting was the completely different lifestyle change. All of my friends smoke. Peer pressure, yes even among us late 30 somethings was a hurdle that needed to be overcome. In my previous quits, the times I would go back to smoking was when we were with friends. Never when I was alone.
I also could not imagine life without smoking. Smoking defined where I was in my day. Morning, break times, evenings. I honestly felt like I couldn't have fun without smoking!!!!
Weight gain!! As a vain woman in mid life weight gain was also a very scary issue. I know how I am, and I knew I would reward myself with food. I read and read on this site about the weight gain issue.
2. How I overcame my first fear? Willpower there. I was unwilling to change friends, so had to change my mind set. It was hard the first month, but now is so easy to be with the smoking friends.
The life-style change? Well, I have to admit that this is one I am still working on. I love my smoke free lifestyle, but even now still have times when I think I would like to light one up. As soon as this thought enters my mind though, I know it would be totally gross and I wouldn't like it at all.
Weight gain? Well I did gain about 10 pounds, but I have finally plateued and now I am exercising, so I feel much better about that.
3. What did I learn in the process? Mind over matter is the most important thing in my opinion when dealing with breaking this addiction. Education is also empowering. I learned that I am a much stronger person than I felt I could ever be. I am now not embarrased when meeting new people, taking care of my patients, or hanging out with my children. I have gained some assertiveness that I never thought I had, I do not tolerate injustices toward me that I did when I was smoking.
I breath 100% better. I have more money.
I am so proud of myself for quitting and my co-workers, family members and friends are proud of me also. This has been wonderful, but I never want to go through it again. It has been a great learning process, and you get to really know yourself without the smoke -screen.
One month, two weeks, six days, 11 hours, 17 minutes and 7 seconds. 1235 cigarettes not smoked, saving $216.17. Life saved: 4 days, 6 hours, 55 minutes.