Poof (not puff)! I’m Back!

Bea ArthurSo, I came back yesterday from a few days in Moncton with Mom, the 4’11” wonder who just won’t stop. Although the bandages and pin will only be taken off next Wednesday, it’s pretty clear her surgery was a success. Mind you, my sister did tell me that Mom won’t admit the extent to which the first 48 hours were rocky, but by the time I arrived on Friday afternoon, Mom was making light of constantly being told to sit down and put her feet up. Her attitude: if you don’t use it, you lose it.

I left the apartment around 2:00 on Friday afternoon to go to Moncton. Around 1:15, I sat on the balcony and had a cigarette. Yes, that’s right: a cigarette. You see, when I started the patch on the 3rd, I had about 10 or 11 cigarettes left in a pack, which is considerably less than half what I’d smoke in a day. I didn’t throw them out. I remembered that during my most successful attempt at quitting two years ago, I had some in the apartment. I just couldn’t bear the thought of not having any at home. My Friday cigarette left me with only 2, which I brought with me to Moncton. However, I told myself that only something going REALLY wrong — like having to rush Mom to the hospital or something — would justify having one of those. And since no such calamity occurred, I found myself go through 100 hours without another puff, that is, until I got back to my balcony after checking my e-mail and unpacking. In the last 25 years, I have never gone 100 hours without a single puff, so that fact, coupled with how it’s been 24 hours since yesterday’s smoke (and I’m not going mad for another), lead me to believe that this time might be it!

For the time being, my new addictions are carrot sticks and striped spearmint candies. The latter have been particularly effective, especially after I eat. Yeah, I know that’s like eating refined sugar by the spoonful, but I couldn’t care less right now. Despite all the “bad” stuff I ate while in Moncton, my weight has remained stable. In fact, my last morning there, while still in my pyjamas, I saw myself register in the high 150s on my mom’s delightfully generous scale — the same scale Mom swears I tipped at 194 in February ’04. So the hell with weight concerns right now; I have some manoeuvring room in that respect in reaching my goal of going weedless.

And what about the Nicoderm-induced dreams?

Oh, they’ve been vivid alright! But nothing like those I had two years ago. I think the gayess has to be the one where I was sitting next to (and chatting with) Bea Arthur on a New York City subway…