Day One

Today is our quit date, and it couldn’t have come at a better time.  After a weekend of too much eating, drinking, and smoking, our lungs and throats are thrashed, our bellies distended, and we are finally prepared for some good, thorough cleansing of mind and body.  I suppose I’ll start to feel the physical effects by this evening, but at the moment it’s a relief to know that I won’t be smoking tonight even if I want to.

This Thanksgiving was possibly the best I’ve ever spent. We joined Cleveland at the Dear Compound in Junction for a half-week of vacation.  The house sits alongside the river, craggy old pecan trees and cacti dotting the expansive lawn to the slope leading down to the water.  There is a hammock, space for a bonfire, and chairs set out in the spots that are best for sitting.  We enjoyed a feast of unparalleled proportions with 34 other guests, played along the river, cracked and ate the tiny native pecans, picked up rocks and bits of sun-bleached bone, watched birds and learned names of plants, drank wine, played music, and enjoyed good company.

The house itself is practically a museum of Americana, handcrafted artifacts. Duck buoys, walnut cups, hollowed antler serving cups, depression glass, roll-top desks, porcupine quill boxes.  Stuffed pheasant, tapestry, majolica, handmade quilts, rag dolls, cut glass, cozies and dishes and holders and decanters, sitters and stuffers and toppers and thousands of other what-nots and hoozits.  Gracious matriarch of the Dear family, Nol, gave me a bag of vintage buttons to help with my Christmas sewing project, and we were sent home with a fryer and more food than we could fit in the fridge.

Saturday evening when we arrived back in Austin was spent at the grocery store buying provisions for Tyson’s birthday party, and I was up late trying to finish cooking all the food.  It was a good birthday Sunday.  There was a generous spread of hot wings, cupcakes, German potato salad, black-eyed peas, shoe-peg corn salad, pumpkin tamales, and more.  We stuffed ourselves once again and smoked with abandon on our last day.  Geoff, Ben, and Robert joined us for games and helped with leftovers.  We smoked our last cigarette before we went to bed.

Today is recovery, in so many ways.

I’ll do my best to continue to update throughout the quitting process.  In the several hours since I started this post, a headache has started to set in.  I’m trying to remember and be still and calm through the physical changes because I know this three days will be the hardest physically, and following that I should be ok.  The majority of my friends have already grown up and stopped smoking by now, so I’m not feeling as though I’ll feel particularly pressured or motivated to start again, though there is still a small part of me that enjoys smoking.  I guess when you take anything out of your life that’s been a part of you for many years you’re bound to feel a sense of loss, or maybe just space where that thing used to live in your routine.  C’est la vie.

Onward and upward.


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