Once again a kind soul told me I should really stop smoking. “It’s bad for you, you know.” Whoa, wait, what? Are you serious? Smoking is bad for me? Now when did that happen?
Yes, I have a bad habit. We all do. I bet you do too. Mine happens to be relentless sarcasm. But you secretly enjoy that one, at least until you become the target, but ….
Anyway, so yes, I smoke. I know it’s disgusting. I know I have to quit soon, and it’s on my list of things to do. I know it’s unhealthy for me, but for now it’s more unhealthy for you if I DON’T smoke. What can I say, I’m a people person, so I smoke because I care.
People like to share the extensive damage it can possibly do to me in the future if I don’t quit. I say in the future because to the angst-caused by hidden incomprehension and a twinge of frustration of medical professionals everywhere, it is not negatively affecting my health at this time. I know this, we just went through this whole ordeal of figuring out what is. Turns out it’s “most likely” stress. (For the record, the “most likely” designation is one used by medical folks to say, duh, we don’t know, so … suck it up.)
Right now smoking is one of the ways I deal with stress. I don’t drink. I don’t partake in other questionable consumables. And I don’t jog. Smoking to reduce stress is counter-intuitive to those who don’t smoke, and to medical professionals who do, but it’s undeniable to me. That it’s unhealthy is also undeniably true. Science backs it up, I’m not questioning this.
The idea that something will “most likely” harm me in 20 or 40 years is a motivator to consider quitting at some point. What can I say, I’m just an adrenalin junkie. Maybe I should go to rehab for my addiction for that; the thrill of the wait. I just live on the edge, don’t I.
Things that are also dangerous for me that I don’t do include drinking coffee, sky diving, getting tattoos in the early hours of the night before in a dimly lit shop at the harbor area on a Caribbean island, and driving in Italy. Do I get healthy living credits for that? I don’t eat cheesecake, SURELY that gets me a few credits.
That’s not to say I live a completely healthy or safe life. I don’t. We all make mistakes and we all have our quirks that make us, well, us. For instance, it’s been upwards of 30 years since as a child I went face to face with the mean neighbor cat and yelled booga booga booga in it’s face. As any adult might have predicted, the cat tried to grab me by the ears to head butt me for being an idiot but soon remembered it didn’t have opposing thumbs, so he slid down my neck, claws out, ever-so-barely missing major arteries. But that was when I was a young child, not having reached the age of reason, which I believe these days is considered 63, but I’d have to check with Congress, I think they changed that last week, so I should not be judged negatively for a few mistakes in the past that have lingering scars.
I can only try to compensate for the dumb, unhealthy things I do. For the most part, that means not doing other things that I know are unhealthy, a way to “balance the chit” if you will. I also don’t smack the crap out of people who tell me smoking is unhealthy for me as if I’ve never heard that before. There are a number of reasons I don’t do this, only one of which is the cost of cigarettes is so high now that I no longer have a “bail kitty” at my disposal. Another reason is it wouldn’t be fair to them since any injury to the head could cause serious damage in their cases. And at the end of the day, I’m just a nice person. It would be rude … that and I wouldn’t want to drop my smoke.