Saturday, May 15, 2010

The best way to quit smoking is to never start

For the past seven years I have been visiting Mrs. Smith's health education classes at Coachella Valley High School as a guest speaker. It's one of the most important talks I do and one of the most rewarding. Mrs. Smith handed me an envelope full of letters from students that attended my last talk. Each thanked me for for talking to them and listed what they learned that was most important to them. Several letters touched me.

I have a brother who smokes and his (wife is) having a baby. We have both tried to tell him to stop but he doesn't listen. One thing I learned (from) your presentation is how to talk to some who smokes and you want them to stop. It seemed like my brother understood what I was trying to tell him and it surprised me because he didn't get mad at all when I told him that maybe him not having enough money came from his smoking habit. Ana
I will stop smoking from now on because I learned that the younger you are to pick up smoking the greater chances I will continue smoking when I am older. Paola
One thing I learned is that smoking causes more damage than I thought. I knew that by smoking you can get lung cancer but I know now that you can cause more damage to yourself. One thing that I will do is try to make sure my little brother and sister don't grow up smoking. Mariana
I learned about that it may not seem like much but little by little smoking does it's effect on the body. Also it could be expensive. Jose.
Other letters just suprised me:
I will not smoke because it's not healthy for me and I won't smoke because I still want to talk and not burp. Eric
( When talking about cancer of the voicebox, I tell them that in the past if your voicebox was removed, you learned how to speak again by sucking in air and burping it up to talk.)
One thing I learned was that there are 30% of cancer's caused by smoking, and that if you get cancer in your lips they can take them off and put fake one's on. Deisy
( I tell the story of Peck who had lip cancer. He was given new lips by a plastic surgeon but he had to be careful not to drool when drinking since his lips were numb-like having novacaine from a dentist. Peck also told me that it took all the fun out of kissing).

Every day I speak to smokers struggling to quit and each one will say the easiest way to quit smoking is to never start. Someday I hope I'm out of business and the next generation will not have to struggle with a nicotine addiction like me and so many other smokers.

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