Breaking Habits -from Cigarettes to Sorry's

Updated: Feb 7

Feel an urge.

Rummage in handbag.

Grab a cigarette.

Find the lighter.

Flick it open.

Ignite the flame.

Inhale.

Exhale.

Gesture with cigarette in hand.

Almost without realizing.

As if on autopilot.

Always in certain situations.

Part of who I am.

Harmful?

Yes, but feels so normal...so comforting...so right.


Just over 21 years ago, as we crossed into Y2K, amidst the revelry at a glittering NYE's party in Kingston Jamaica, on the lawns of a beautiful home, I made myself a promise. Throughout the night, I took cigarettes out of a familiar blue and white pack, and lit them with a beautifully crafted lighter I'd managed not to lose for over a decade.


I was a smoker and had been since the summer before University when I was 18. Smoking wasn't yet antisocial ... seemed rather social at the time. But I wasn't a social smoker. I was a worried at the end of the night if only one remained in the pack kind of smoker. It was a noticeable part of who I was back then. In retrospect, my friends and I, who all took up smoking together, likely saw smoking as a passport to the future that awaited us beyond high school. That would have been just as intoxicating as the nicotine. But I digress.



While the world wondered what would happen to the computers when 1999 became 2000, I wandered off to the edge of the party. Feeling reflective, I acknowledged to myself that my smoking habit was ultimately self-destructive. I concluded that I did not want to have a hand in my own destruction. The passport had expired and I was ready for a new one.


I knew what