Many years ago, I quit smoking. Looking back, its my mindset that is so interesting to me. I wanted to quit, yet I also didn’t want to quit. This fence sitting (with conflicting desires), was what made quitting so difficult, and the idea so unappealing.
I didn’t like the smelling of cigarette smoke. I didn’t like the amount of money I was spending on it. I was worried about future health issues.
I liked the stress relief. I enjoyed the fact that many times a day I had a cigarette and all I thought about at the time – was the cigarette. I liked the feeling of the warm smoke being inhaled. I liked blowing smoke rings. I liked the idea that some of my best ideas came through networking or just thinking, while out in the smoking area.
Then one day, as I was fence-sitting, enjoying my cigarette and contemplating quitting (yes, all smokers do know that it is bad for them and that they SHOULD quit), I came back in side, and my 3 or 4 year old son asked me if I would quit smoking. He didn’t tell me he didn’t want me to die, there was no attempt at emotional black mail (and for those of you without kids – yes… 3 and 4 year olds DO know how to use emotional blackmail.) He simply asked me if I would quit smoking. That was the straw that broke the camels back.. It pushed me over to the “quit” side of the fence.
This fence is familiar to me. It seems I have spent quite a while on a similar fence, regarding health and exercise. I want to be in good shape. I want to be comfortable going to the beach/pool with no shirt. I want to be able to run 15 or 20 miles whenever I want. I want to be a good example to my kids that health/exercise is important.
I want to be able to sleep in. I want to be able to lounge on my couch, or outside in the nice weather. I want to know I don’t have to worry about fitting 3 hours into my schedule on Saturday morning. I want to have my nights/weekends to spend time with my family.
This fence sitting gets uncomfortable after a while, but it is where I find myself as I turn 39. I haven’t had “that push” that I had with quitting smoking, but I have attempted to force myself to the “healthy side” regardless. But the shiny couch calls to me… My comfy pillow calls to me.
Not this year. Even without that “push” – this year, I am going to do it. And you get to read about it.