Nicotine Dreams

I … am a smoker. Or was, given the patterns of late. It’s been a few years since I began my long divorce with cigarettes.

Regardless, I’ll always be an active addict. It’s a crutch, and one of the first things that come to mind in the moments between fall and rise. There isn’t a time when I feel heavy-chested, and am consumed by the thought of inhaling something heavier.

There have been a few times in the past years that the urge overtook my ability to internally deny it. The most recent of them, is what spurred on the desire to write this thought stream down.

I was angry. Fell into a well, and felt unwell. Sadness was strangling my intentions. I stormed out. Or left gracefully. I’d put money on the former. My chest hurt. It was difficult to breathe. My skin felt warm. To which the breeze lost it’s battle against. Cool though, it was. The sun had gone, which saved the pinch between my eyes from growing, though the streetlights and neon didn’t help.

I was nervous. Rushing almost. Gliding. There were butterflies in my stomach. Why? I am well versed with the taste of tobacco. Have I been off it so long, that my body’s craving becomes nostalgia?

Every moment of it felt bad. Like a lucid dream of exponential self-hate. At each simple road crossing along the path I had an argumentative, but brief, conversation with myself. None of which successfully allowed my body the right motivation to just stop plucking that match from his platform of friends, striking him on the back of the flap, and sucking him in through years of regressed adoration in the form of a paper-tube filled with tobacco, and god knows what else.

Look back, I feel the nausea was deserved. Why did I relapse? Why can’t I be one who breaks the stigma of lifelong smoking habits? Am I so empty in the assurances I need to feel like I’m capable of coming down from an escalated experience on my own?

One thing that can’t be explained to those who’ve never smoked is the elation. The way your body feels as you exhale. At this point in my life, having not smoked a real cigarette in over a year, it’s no longer a dire need for the nicotine. That’s just a dream my blood wakes from in a chilled moist coating. It’s the mentality. A savior. My savior. If I can just have one, I’ll feel better. My hands cease shaking, my lungs feel heavy again, my muscles relax.

Simply the memory of how good it felt compelled me to weaken the strength I’ve grown. In the weeks since this incident, it’s happened more.

So I cry at thoughts two-fold. Have I undone any progress I made riding my cycle of these safety harnesses that harmed more than healed? Am I more fragile, or weaker in spirit than I believed I was for the moments I could passionately say I was rid of it?

Maybe burying this part of me is symphonic in sound, or profound in the death of a desire, but I struggle with the realization that a comfort can be a killer, or that leaving it behind might cause me to feel less stable.

Oh savior, save me.

Originally published at on April 10, 2016.

WYATT FOSSETT is a Writer residing in Vancouver, Canada. Known for high-octain cocktails of real life expression, fanciful works of fiction, and a history in Journalism.

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