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Honored Advisor

Re: decision making methods?

I had a quiet day, much of it driving the mindless interstate, yesterday. I couldn't get you and this post out of my mind.

Two different situations kept coming into my head. First, the death of my precious daughter, Jenna. While the exact cause of her pulmonary embolism is unknown, it might at least partly be attributable to smoking cigarettes. I would hate to think I could lose a friend to them, too.

Second, a conversation from about 25 years ago kept riding in on the coattails of that sad loss of fifteen months ago. Jenna's best friend in elementary school was a little girl whose mom was a pretty close friend of mine, since we met through their school and sports activities. One night as the kids practiced soccer, she showed me a printout report from a body scan.

The paper showed several metastases of a bone cancer. I remember reading it and thinking, "This could be my friend's death sentence."

She had two young daughters, and was saying she wasn't going to have treatment. She was mostly asymptomatic at the time, and said she could live a few more months and not have the miseries of treatment.

The thing was, she had failed to consider that the disease process was going to accelerate and cause her to lose mobility, experience excruciating pain, generally incapacitate her. It wasn't going to leave her functioning at the level she was, until it killed her. I,made this point to her, and said it seemed really unfair to spare herself a few months of discomfort, to leave her girls motherless so young. I said that I felt she owed it to them to try.

She did opt for treatment, and is still alive today. Her daughters are 31 and 29, and though they would miss her if she passed now, I know they have needed her protection in the years since we sat in her car and she shared her secret. She hadn't even told her husband, and didn't plan to do so. Their marriage had a LOT of problems, but even so, they needed to work through her illness together, as a family, as best they could.

I read in your post that this illness isn't so bad...YET. It isn't going to let you stay this functional for long, if you continue to smoke. It is going to rob you of every pleasure you do have, and leave you gasping like a fish out of water.

Once you go too far in that direction, as you say, you know there is not really any way to return. You have a pretty decent level of abilities left, and are trying to decide whether or not to squander them, in exchange for the pleasures of a puff of smoke.

I have smoked for years on end, as much as four- plus packs a day. I still dream about having a cigarette, and probably always will. I would almost bet that every time you want to say something, when you feel badly treated, you pull one out and light up instead.

Been there, done that, and if I can quit, you can too. It may make some other people uncomfortable when your mouth starts to function without its crutch, but that may be something that thy will just have to learn to deal with...why do you have to be the only one involved in learning to get along?

I wish you would read what you wrote, as if it was what your best friend told you about her own life, and give her the best advice you can muster. i wish you could convince her to love herself enough to want to live long enough to really enjoy life.

If anything I have said is off-point, please take it as well-meant. I just cannot stand by and watch smoking steal another life, without speaking up.
Senior Advisor

Re: decision making methods?

Just quit.  There is really no alternative.  Is he going to help you up the stairs when you are dragging the ventilator around?  Are you going to sit in the Wal-Mart waiting for a cart because you can't walk?

You are considering suicide by smoking, a costly, nasty, smelly, painful, debilitating, self-destructive course of action.  Hello?  Is there anyone home?

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Honored Advisor

Re: decision making methods?

Some research shows that inhaled nicotine is the most addictive substance known to man...even more so than heroin. After a lifetime of use, getting some medical support might be helpful. It will, though, all boil down to a personal dedication to giving it up.
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Senior Contributor

Re: decision making methods?

Dairymom, all I can say is WOW!  I wish that no one should have to bear so much on their heart.

 

One thing to consider, that I don't think was mentioned yet:

If you don't seek treatment, and if your health degrades, will your family support you.   It is a question I think needs to be addressed.   I have helped a bit in nursing homes, and the very saddest things, that just break my heart, are those who have a terminal condition, and are alone.

Maybe, if nothing else, look to a church group, or ladies club, or volunteer group, that gives mutual support, so that you won't have that worry, on top of everything else?

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Contributor

Re: decision making methods?

Dairymom,

 

Like Kay, I too could not help but think about your situation. I read more about COPD, I know about dairy farms and difficult spouses, and the only person to make any change is you. You are strong to make these life altering changes.

 

Reality check -   nicotine is addictive, it helps calm a person, hardest thing I did 30 years ago was quit smoking. There are programs and more support to kick the habit. First and foremost think of yourself, the farm, the husband is NOT more important than your health. Put some goals in place, focus on stabilizing your COPD, grandchildren are a priority -  how about the goal of dancing at your grandson or granddaughters wedding?? The family member that has put the threat of not speaking to you if you leave the marriage needs to grow up. Follow your doctors guidance with health issues ( ask about help with depression ), seek a lawyers advice about separation, maybe long term move near son who had left farm, son in military will support your decision, after all he is the youngest.

 

Please remember you are not alone, your friends here love and care about you.

Senior Contributor

Re: decision making methods?

I know I posted once already but your post has been so on my mind.  I watched my dad who had quit smoking & still got lung cancer, gasp for air.  Stood beside the rescue unit personel & gave his list of medications while he gasped in the extra oxygen they gave him.  Did this more times than I want to remember.  Watched him in the nursing home medicated so he didn't fight for air. 

 

Hate painting this picture but I would do anything I could to get away from the nicotine.  You still have a chance.  We're all plugging for you here.  See the doctor tomorrow to get some help.  Please please keep us posted on your condition.

Even if you can't quit.  We want to know how you are.

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Senior Contributor

Re: decision making methods?

I am saddened to hear of your health problems. You have received some very good advice here.

 

From what you have written here I believe you husband will not change. Your child's threat should not make a decision for you. Your life is the most important issue here, you deserve much much better. I would not let a n adult child's threat keep me in a horrible marriage. I am shocked that a child would tell mom such a thing and he has to know what you are dealing with in DH. A child who makes that kind of threat is not a loving child and there will be more threats.

 

Get to an attorney this week and find an apartment. A change could make quitting smoking easier.

 

You have to be a strong woman to live with what you do. I believe you are much stronger than you think. It is certainly time for you to think about your own life and becoming the person you want to be. I am praying for you.

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