I just wanted to say THANK YOU SO MUCH for all of your kind thoughts and prayers. They mean so much to me. I wasn't sure whether or not I should start talking about what is going on with my health or not. I'm glad that this is helping raise awareness for others.
For those that wonder how long I smoked- I started smoking casually when I was 15 and it increased as I got older. My mom had just passed away and I started hanging out with some not so nice people who were into smoking and drinking.. so yeah. I am 33 years old and have probably smoked a little less than half my life.
I always smoked lights or ultra lights. Like that really makes any kind of difference. They all contain nicotine. I tried to quit several times and would start back up again. I really really loved imported cigarettes from India. The cloves, the vanilla flavored ones just tasted sooo good.
I finally quit for good last year in Febuary. I used the patch the whole time and found other things to do with my hands like doing embroidery or crocheting. I also keep tons of sprees (my candy of choice) and pistachios to snack on.
Is it hard to quit? Oh God yes!! For me it is like trying not to eat when you are hungry. You just crave it that bad! It can be done. It sucks at first, really really sucks. But find the way that works for you and just do it.
I never in a million years would think that I would be out of breathe at 33. I had just thought it was taking longer for my lungs to come back from smoking. Guess what, your lungs never really recover from smoking.
This past Thursday I had to go into to see my general practitioner. I couldn't get in to see this new pulmonologist until Monday and I really didn't feel like going to the ER again. She tested my O2 level after walking around the office. It was at 84!! Normal O2 levels are 98-100. This was after I had only walked, just casually walked 4 laps.
She gave me a rescue inhaler and ordered an overnight O2 test. This is where they hook you up to a O2 sat machine. They put a little clippy thing on your index finger while you sleep to see how your oxygen level are while you sleep. Lucky for me, they had a medical supply company bring out a machine to me and they picked it up in the morning.
She also ordered some blood work to see if I have a genetic disorder that would cause me to develop this lung condition at such a young age.
I won't know any of the results until I go see this new pulmonologist tomorrow. And I get to do some more tests tomorrow.
I have to say that the rescue inhaler has helped me more than the Advair. I get immediate results from it. And you have bad days and good days. Yesterday was really good. I only had to use the rescue inhaler twice. Today, my chest feels a little tighter and I'm more short of breathe. But I think that might be because I am nervous for the doctor visit tomorrow.
I know for some people quitting smoking seems completely hopeless. You can do it though. I promise as bad as it is to quit, you can do it. There is light at the end of the tunnel. You won't always have the horrible withdrawl. If you can get through the first week, you can make it a month and then after a month 6 months.
It can be done. And what does it hurt to at least try.