Most of us enjoy trying new things, taking chances, and risking various things. Two summers ago I flew to Europe where I spent a month without my parents. Living with my cousin, I began hanging out with her friends every night. It was during this month that I first started smoking cigarettes. I didn’t care, it was fun, and I would be able to quit upon my return to the United States. Allow me to stop and point out that my Dad had ‘cheated death’ when I was about 6 years old, an experience brought about by many decades of smoking. He immediately quit after that. Additionally, my Mom’s father died of lung cancer.
I returned to the United States, and kept smoking for a couple of weeks. Once my Mom began suspecting things, I immediately stopped and it wasn’t terribly hard. A year and a half passed before I picked up another cigarette. “I quit once, I can do it again. It’s just social this time!” I figured. Well I started again with only a couple a day, and just with friends. I progressed to about half a pack a day, and finally ended up at about a pack a day; give or take. Sometimes it would be a few more than the day before, sometimes a few less; regardless, I began sensing that it was too much. One day, my Dad noticed the smell as I got into the car and, just like that, I was caught. I then realized it’s time to stop, so I figured okay, no more. I cut down to about 10 a day for about a week. This didn’t last long as I just couldn’t cut down any less. This was a few months ago and I still currently smoke. As I see more and more of my friends start smoking, I realize that I was of the same type, an arrogant naive boy. I thought I wasn’t going to smoke a lot, and I had many excuses to believe so. I no longer enjoy smoking now and I wish it was easier to stop and give it up as it was as easy to start.
The point is, many of us will manage to keep their smoking on a social level however this is not the case with most people. Before you pick up that cigarette, do yourself a favor and just think about whether or not you REALLY want to be dependent on these things. I know that I thought about all the consequences, including an early death, yet I did not care. In fact, the idea that I might die early if I don’t quit still doesn’t bother me. It is the fact that I am dependent on such a pointless substance which really bothers me. You begin finding yourself in positions where you want to go outside and have a cigarette but cannot because of your parents or location.
Marijuana, a (usually) illegal substance, which does NOT commonly cause death and is NOT physically addicting is more beneficial than picking up a (cigarette) smoking habit. If something less severe such as marijuana is illegal, why is the number one cause of cancer in the United States legal?
Do yourself a favor, if you want to “be cool” or find a “social habit,” there are other options to consider. Perhaps take up coffee, it’s not as bad as people say! Looking forward to burning 500 chemicals and a few plants rolled up in a piece of paper attached to a cotton cylinder should NOT be the highlight of your day; actually, anywhere between 5-20 times a day for that matter.