All I Have To Do Is Change, Duh!

By the end of the month all of us – well, all of us on Social Security Disability – are struggling. I check my account to make sure I still have that $0.49 to keep my spirits high. No matter what, I will not spend that $0.49.

Smoking has got to be the most expensive thing I do. I do not go the the movies. I do not have a car, so I don’t have to buy gas, or pay for insurance or repairs. I’m single (I don’t think I need to elaborate on how beneficial that is to me economically,) with no plan or inclination to change Said Status. My rent is very low….


Smoking is the most expensive thing in my life.

A few days before the First of the Month hits tens-of-millions of digitally controlled Direct Deposit Accounts across the country, and everyone living at the Y-Haven building in East Cleveland is asking everyone else for a cigarette.

Smoking is disgusting. A disgusting addiction! – And I love it! That is the terrible thing about it. And stress, of course, is a terrible thing. Even more terrible is the poor coping skills we (me) Addicts & Alcoholics developed over the years dealing with stress. Stress causes more flicks from the Bics than any other thing I can think of, lighting the ends of the Coffin Nails, just hearing the “click-click-click” noise from the lighters elevates a primordial sense in knowing everything is going to be Okay.

You just have to get that darn cigarette lit.

There is more than just stress keeping me from kicking probably the most useless addiction in the History of Unhealthy Habits. It is more than being physically dependent on the Nicotine to stop the headaches & insomnia & many other discomforts accompanying withdrawal.

There is more to it than dropping the Rebel, tough guy mystique I always associated with smoking…

In all honesty, the terrible, frustrating truth is I I don’t know what to do with myself. It can be a quick-fix excuse to get away from people when I don’t know what to say or do. And smoking always united us – The Smokers – to one another. You know how many tens-of-thousands, if not a hundred-thousand conversations I have had with people standing outside of buildings!

But I don’t know what to do with myself.

All through my life, starting in my early teens, I have been addicted to something. Something had to be popped, smoked, drank or snorted to stop my hands from darting-around & shaking & motioning away at nothing in the air; stop my leg from bouncing up & down to slow down… to speed up… to stop the scatalogical savagery pervading my internal compositions.

Through all my past experimentations & medications & complications, cigarettes were always there to – literally – stink things up all the more.

Cigarettes were my TRUE Gateway Drug.

I’m not sure which one I tried first: Cigarette? or Beer?

Not that it matters when it all started. At what age. All of it has been a composition of consistent negativity.




Coffee & Cigarettes. Two core indulgences I’ve kept. The really gross one I have been actively trying to STOP. Little-by-little, with little-to-little success, I have managed to cut-back on smoking throughout the year (during the beginning of Spring,) pick it back up, and now I’ve returned to the Cut Back.

I will not even attempt to kick coffee. Self Punishment should have limitations!


Pills. Pills. Pills.

When I was younger, living in beautiful Missoula, MT, it was pills, pills, pills, pills, pills.

Even now: pills, pills, pills, pills, pills, pills, pills. Only now it is for different reasons… kinda.

Every morning & evening is a reminder of how very sick I must be to require such chemical assistance.

And I want to expand it even further! – With supplemental pills, pills, pills, pills, pills, pills, pills.

(What’s comical, for me, anyway, is having an Wish List dedicated to Protein Power Shakes, vitamins, Fish & 1250 mg Black Seed oil soft-gel capsules, and Nutrient bars.)

According to the American non-profit organization, Hazelden Foundation, a “substance use disorder is the use of mood-altering drugs that interferes with or has a negative effect on a person’s life.”

I really want some substance use order. Don’t construe that, now. Let me explain.

Putting a good deal of faith in Medications & Health Benefit Products, exercising & managing a healthy diet (all these things are “mood altering”) is just another way for me to escape.

Escape how I can’t help BEING (Dissociative & Uncomfortable) without some kind of assistance.

What changed in me this year was embracing a simple solution – a “Duh!” type moment of clarity painfully hitting me when it was so obvious what I needed to do: CHANGE!

You can keep putting substances in your body, like you like to do. And it will make you feel good! Just change unhealthy drug & alcohol intake into pragmatic indulgence.

Two things have been rattling around my mind for awhile. First one is something a famous journalist once said: “Anything worth doing is worth doing in Excess.” & “Too much of a good thing is impossible,” which I believe was printed on one of the plaques my Grandma Kemble had.

I hope both statements will apply to my imperative transformation.

I think it will.

I believe that it is!

The past ten months have been hard. But they have not been without wonder. The next few years are going to be consistently hard. Anything crucially transformative must be hard.

Nothing would change if it wasn’t.

And I have to change!


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