Thursday, January 24, 2008

Soapbox

"...your father's lung capacity is 35%, the doctor says that he has got to quit smoking."

This is what I heard during a conversation with my mom. An update on my father's health is nothing new, because I always ask how he's doing. I worry about him, maybe I shouldn't, I know he won't live forever, but I do.

Smoking is something my father has done for as long as I've been alive and then some. I'm 35. I clearly remember a carton of Marlboro Reds on the top of the refrigerator, put there, so the "kids can't get into them." But all you had to do was pull up a chair from the kitchen table and you could into anything on top of the refrigerator. We didn't. We (my brother and I) knew we'd get into serious trouble.

As I got older, a lot of my friends started smoking, to be cool, or whatever, it was the "thing" to do. So, I decided to try it too. Marlboro Lights, and I got caught and I got what was close to the worst spanking of my life, belt and all. And I'll never forget it. I never tried smoking again.

Ironically enough, my brother does smoke, so does my sister, so did my father's mother and father. And so does my father. You would think after all this, my sister, who's 21 and my brother who's soon to be 32, would catch a clue and quit, but no.

I know it's not easy to quit, to just walk away from it. If it was easy, we wouldn't need all these smoking cessation drugs, or anti-smoking programs, etc.

I have friends that smoke, I wish they'd stop. I won't date someone who smokes and I get a lot of flack for that. I've even gotten "what if the woman of your dreams is a smoker?". Then she's not the woman of my dreams. I can't and I won't watch someone that I love kill themselves from the inside out. I'm already doing that.

I'm watching my father die, slowly. And I've watched for years. I've watched a strong, invincible man become a shell of his former self. He gets winded now, has oxygen to sleep, whether for a nap or for the night and has portable oxygen, just in case and yet...he'll continue to smoke. I have a lot of respect for my mother, because they've been married for 36 years and she's stood by him, through thick and thin.

He's trying Chantix,(spelling?) so we shall see if that helps, but at this rate, I feel certain, he'll be lucky to see 70.

So now, I'm stepping off my soapbox, for now. And if this post gave anyone something to think about, it was well worth it.

3 Comments:

Blogger Debbie said...

I'm sorry to hear about your dad. That's terrible.

4:50 AM  
Blogger Dr. Krista said...

and so... I guess we won't be dating. :) Too bad cuz I coulda been the woman of your dreams...

8:29 PM  
Blogger J R Estelle said...

HA, you are the woman of my dreams, now I just need to find a way to move GA closer to CA and be done with it.

9:28 PM  

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