Saturday, April 2, 2011

>Effects of Smoking - You Are NOT Just Hurting Yourself

>I am not a smoker. I have never smoked nor do I ever intend to smoke. However, I have been exposed to the effects of smoking most of my life.
Smoking can cause more than physical damage. My mother smoked, my husbands mother and father smoked. They are all dead.

My husbands mother died of throat and lung cancer and his father died of emphysema and lung cancer. My mother, well let me tell you a short story. My mother was so excited, she was going to be 60, the legal age to retire and receive social security. She came to visit and said the most peculiar thing. I use the word peculiar because that is a nice way of saying stupidest. We were talking and she says, "Honey, I never realized that smoking could damage your heart. I knew it could damage your lungs, but I never realized it could damage your heart."

I had tried to get my mother to quit smoking since I was old enough to know what smoking did to you. I was in grammar school and I was in health class and the teacher showed us a pink healthy lung and a lung of someone who had been smoking. I was so upset. The smoking lung was black and shrivelled and just, yuck. From that point on, I was terrified. I wanted my mother to quit and I was ready to do anything. So, I came home from school, took all my mother's cigarettes and matches, and hid them under my bed. Needless to say, she was not happy. However, the funniest thing happened. When I finally reluctantly told her where I hid them, she yelled at me (not what you think). She said, "Do you know how dangerous it is for you to have matches under your bed? What if you started a fire?" She said nothing about the cigarettes.

Many many times I tried later on in life to get her to quit. I cried, begged, and pleaded with her but she just would not or could not do it. Finally, when I was older and she had grandchildren, she tried to quit. She actually tried a few times. No use, she just could not do it.

I saw my mother in June and she was gone in September. She had so many plans for her retirement. She was going to spend more time with the family. She and my step-father had plans. She and I were going to go away together, mother/daughter trips. Now, those plans are gone, forever. I really miss her.

The reason I am sharing this story with you is because I am absolutely sure that there is someone in your life that you are hurting by smoking and exposing to the effects of smoking.
I do not mean second hand smoke. Yes, that is bad too, but I mean by smoking and shortening your life and the time you can spend with your loved ones. Smoking does not only hurt you. Think about it!! Quit !

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