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Great American Smokeout Feature Blog: Quitting Is A Life Changer!


ekq740 QFriends resized 600Meet Peggy. She is a nicotine addict. Today Peggy celebrates over 1241 days of being smoke-free. She is also the first place winner of QuitNet’s Great American Smokeout: Picture Your Quit contest and the inspiration behind this weeks’ Qblog.

After 20+ years of smoking, Peggy tells us, “The changes to life seem to evolve like quitting…I tend to embrace more of life now instead of hiding with a sickerette.”

Peggy found QuitNet in 2007.  But it wasn’t until 2009 that she felt ready to quit. She joined the Chantix Users club—one of many clubs on QuitNet— and has made friends for life. In fact, the winning contest photo she submitted depicts her “QFriends” from the Chantix Users Club whom she met during a 3D meeting in Chicago. She explains, “We have grown close; this quitting journey had led us to exploration and discovery of ourselves, with each other.”

And it’s been quite a journey. On July 7, 2009, after over 20 years of smoking, Peggy turned to Chantix and the support of QuitNet, and turned away from cigarettes. She attributes being able to stay quit due to the education and shared experiences on QuitNet. She felt a bond with other Q members which kept her accountable to her quit.  Shared stories, shared interests, shared laughter and shared tears brought Peggy closer to the Q. She learned a lot about her fellow Q members; she also learned a lot about herself.

While she holds onto many memories, she recalls a pivotal moment in her quit, when the advice of another fellow Q member kept her from almost losing a 6 month quit. She had just found out one of her close Q buddies had relapsed. And this advice was just what she needed to hear to stay on guard:

“Peggy, be careful if it was a close bud to you. For some reason when someone slips it can open a door to other buds to do the same. It happens a lot so please be careful, Peggy.”

Peggy considers herself privileged to have had her hand held and, in turn, has held the hands of others through difficult times. Ultimately, the accountability she felt for keeping her quit for her Q buddies shifted to keeping the quit for herself.

An important part of her quit day is the Morning Pledge. Each morning, she repeats these powerful words, “I pledge not to smoke today and offer my hand in friendship and support to the next." She still reads the list of pledgers and looks for newbies and other folks who may need an extra hand that day. There is nothing like the power of the pledge.

Congratulations to Peggy on her quit and her win! Keep the quit and keep on being an inspiration to others!





Way to Go Peggy! And thanks for paying it forward to so many of us! An inspiration indeed! 
Posted @ Friday, November 30, 2012 11:46 AM by Oregon Joan
You're famous! So glad to share part of this journey with you, Peggy. But could you photoshop about 20 pounds off my pic up there? hehe 
Congratulations. You do so much for the CUC, I'm glad to see you being recognized! 
KTQ and DFS!
Posted @ Friday, November 30, 2012 12:25 PM by CarlyKicksButts
Peggy, congrats, I was 3 weeks quit and caved, I am going to try again. My son thinks I'm nuts, I lost my mom to lung cancer, however, she did not smoke. Also, lost my good friend 4 months later, multiple types of cancer. It is so addict ing it's sickening. I know I need to quit, oh, also my son is in med school, 3rd year, so you can image what I hear everyday, he lives with me! I almost lost my little sister to cancer also, she quit and is on me constantly to stop. I need to really make a no excuse decision to stop for good, I need advice, I've tried the patch and ziban and Wellbutrin and smokes with the all it's a wonder I didn't have a heart attach.
Posted @ Saturday, December 01, 2012 9:31 AM by Rose
Congratulations, what an awesome journey you have traveled! Wishing you tranquility, laughter & love on each new path you find your self walking on in this adventure called life. Smiles, Barb
Posted @ Saturday, December 01, 2012 5:11 PM by barb - barbwire11
Thanks Barb, Carlykicksbutt and Oregonjoan!  
Rose -- as said so many times on the Q, the secret to quitting smoking is to NOT smoke. You must fight through each crave, one at a time, learn from each crave for the next. It gets easier, it is worth it.  
You say it is not wonder you didn't have a heart attack from the meds etc. The number one killer in the US is heart disease. Smoking is a leading cause of heart disease. You probably won't have a heart attack from the meds, but from smoking. Quit Smoking. It is the best I advice I have without knowing you. Best always, Peggy
Posted @ Sunday, December 02, 2012 8:21 AM by zachpeg12
WTG! I have to say that a more deserving Q member could not have been picked over sweet Peggy!! She was such a big inspiration to me when I first quit..holding my hand, laughing with me and encouraging me whenever I needed her. Congratulations on your quit and your smokefree life! KTQ my friend. 
Posted @ Sunday, December 02, 2012 3:36 PM by Minnie
Yeah! Peg-you always were a winner! Congratulations-I'm so happy we have shared this trip! 
Posted @ Wednesday, December 05, 2012 5:27 AM by orthorn
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