Stop, start, stop, start, keep going, stop, start again, reward yourself, and mix in a drink. That’s the pattern of smoking simplied, one that’s dominated many years of my adult life.
I had my first Camel on my 18th birthday. I purchased the pack at the local 7-11 not because I wanted to smoke, but because I wanted to secretly do something to get back at my parent’s for some percieved wrong. I didn’t even inhale for a long time, I just sucked the fumes into my mouth then slowly let the smoke tendrils trickle out. They tasted like shit but the Super Big Gulps covered that up. Such is the modern American diet.
That was a long time ago, back when I used to want to get as close as possible to people and open up about EVERYTHING. I’ve changed a lot since then. And it’s why I don’t write that often. I don’t have this burning desire to open up anymore. Sometimes. Maybe after a few drinks. Usually not.
I’m not sure if it’s that I’ve become much less insecure and socially anxious. I mean, I don’t really care much about what anyone thinks about me anymore except professional colleauges because, well, I haven’t won the lottery yet (paychecks are fairly important to keeping a roof over the head and food on the table). And lonely much either which is a blessing and a curse. I used to feel loneliness so intense–I’ll simply say not many people have experienced loneliness until it causes perpetual 24/7 physical pain.
But now I sleep better. I haven’t had more than a puff in four or five days. My digestion is getting back on track. I have the fundemental companionship I need. And the desire to write, to put myself out there, to be heard, is gone. Echos of the past and another person. Writing is a chore, not an imperative.
Trying to change that. Blogging. Working on my shorts stories. Thinking about finding a few pen pals again.
Well, it’s time to get back to work.