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I started smoking once or twice a week when I was in my early twenties. It slowly developed into an ‘after-work’ treat and even then, I am talking one or two small spliffs.
Over the years it took over me, as I started to work from home so that meant my first spliff of the day could be as early as 11am and that would be the first of five or six. Where I live, smoking hash or weed is as common as having a coffee so it has become almost normalised. And that counteracted any guilt or concerns that I had about my ever increasing habit. It’s also ‘semi-legal’ without going into the finer details but basically, smoking is in no way a taboo as it maybe in other countries.
When I found out I was expecting, I gave up smoking the very same day and swore I would never look back. . However, once my child started taking formula, I would treat myself to a spliff after a long day….and then slowly slipped back into bad habits. I felt like an awful mum but at the same time, it was extremely hard to stop as my husband smokes too (I can’t bring myself to call him or myself ‘a user’ as it brings to mind images of junkies living in squalor, which is far, far from the truth). We are a normal, working family but we’ve carried a ‘habit’ through from our youth into our adulthood and I can no longer justify it.
There’s no point me totaling up what we spend on it because really because it’s peanuts and doesn’t deter me at all….between us, we’d spend about 60€ a month. I know people that spend that on take away food and fill their bodies with junk but of course, that’s ok because that is legal and more socially acceptable.
No, it’s not about the money. It’s about my time. It’s about what the spiff is taking away from me in time. And whatever time it takes away from me, it takes away from my child. She is my sole motivation for quitting. She will turn two soon and she needs a mother who is lively, who can keep up with her and who doesn’t shy away from going to the park because she’s half stoned and doesn’t want to bump into people. She needs a mum who won’t be a hypocrite when she is of an age that she might experiment with drugs – please God she doesn’t but if she does, how can I look her in the eyes and tell her not to go down that road while I am stoned myself?
So I quit, again, and went cold turkey 8 days ago (again, terminology that I find difficult to apply to myself due to all of its connotations). The first two days are the hardest and I felt very wound up and snappy. The most difficult part of quitting is not so much the ‘addiction to the drug’, in my opinion, it’s the addiction to the habit of taking the drug. That after lunch joint that sets you up for a relaxing afternoon, rolling a spliff when you know you are ‘done for the day’ (although that time was becoming increasingly earlier), enjoying a summers evening slightly stoned and mellow…..that’s what is hard about giving up. We are creatures of habit after all so if our habits revolve around a rolling up schedule, it just forms part of our daily routine. So as creatures of habit, we can surely changes those habits and become accustomed to a whole new set of habits instead – something more productive, healthy and more to the point – habits which do not rob me my daughter of my time.