Strike up the theme music, please, maestro. It’s time to induct a new crop of people who have quit smoking cigarettes into the Super Stoppers Club (SSC).   

The SSC is an honorary society I created years ago when I was a daily columnist for The Washington Post. To belong, all you have to do is “kick the nic”.   But that’s often easier said than done. So, in our club, we publicize successful quitters with two hopes in mind: One, that the publicity will help them avoid backsliding and two, that their success will inspire other smokers to quit.

First up is Jolene J., of Wheat Ridge CO. She says she quit via two paths: “Nicotine patches and prayer.”

A diagnosis of sepsis provided an extra push. “I was sent home with portable oxygen,” she says. “I decided that I didn’t want to be tethered to an oxygen tank.” So, just like that, she parked a 50-year habit. Well done, Jolene.

Phyllis D., of Windsor WI, also quit for two reasons.

Reason one: She was driving to work one day and heard an ad on the radio for a quit-smoking program . She wrote down the phone number—and started thinking.

Reason two: A friend at work also expressed a desire to quit. So, they enrolled in the cessation program together. Having someone who was going through the same thing at the same time and who could support her during the ups and downs of quitting, did the job for Phyllis—and for her friend, too.

Michael D., of Ogden, UT, is a cold turkey quitter. One day, he just decided that he “enjoyed breathing too much.” He said bye-bye to cigarettes, and hello to better health than he had enjoyed in a long time.

Barney B., of Sacramento CA, knew for years that he was defying the odds. “Both of my parents had heart and cancer issues,” he said. Still, he smoked. But eventually his mentality changed, and he decided he needed to show some concern for his health.

Barney’s method of quitting? “Hypnosis and suggestion,” he says. It  has now been  more than 17 years since he picked up a cigarette. How great is that?   

Finally, Janice F. of Waukesha, WI, used her mother as her reason for quitting, and her Mom used her as well.  “My Mom was a lifelong smoker who just couldn’t quit,” Janice says. “I knew if I finally quit, she would succeed.”

Daughter got there, via cold turkey, and Mom soon followed, via the same method. Alas, Janice’s mother died just five months later. Still, for Janice, the glow of success lingers. Two women relied on their closeness to quit together. Inspiring! 

Applause to all these quitters. All of us who have kicked the habit hope that these stories will persuade others. The time to quit is today!

Inspired to quit? Visit Lung.org/FFS or call 1-800-LUNG-USA to learn more about proven-effective programs to help you quit for good. 

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