A Story That Tell You Why You Need to Quit Smoking
Smoking is frowned upon these days, so much that there are constant ads against it, and some Drug Stores have stopped carrying smoking products altogether. While the world is a safer place against second hand smoke these days, it wasn’t always the case. Take yourself back over 50 years ago and not only was the world a different place, but smoking was socially acceptable, and encouraged.
and in schools. There were vending machines where you could buy a pack from, in bars
and movie theaters. Smoking was allowed in most buildings, and was cool with movie stars often smoking themselves. While there may have been a legal age limit to purchasing them later, when they were first introduced it was not illegal to sell to minors or for minors to purchase them.
Set yourself into the mind of a nine-year-old girl back in that time. Here she is surrounded by advertisements on her way to school. She has 7 brothers and sisters, 3 of which are older. One of them is into chewing tobacco and the other two are smoking at age 12 and thirteen, following the footsteps of their parents. Yes, both of her parents are smokers, going through packs often and leaving the out wherever there might be space. It’s easy for her to take a pack and hide behind the house to take a drag and try her first cigarette. While it tastes like trash at first, she keeps at it, so she can be like the rest of her family and blend in. She wants to be liked and she wants to be cool as all the pictures around town show that you are cool when you smoke. However, one day she gets caught by her dad, and her punishment is to smoke an entire pack right in front of him. All that nicotine makes her sick, but it makes her want it more, leading to a lifetime habit of smoking. Nobody knew at the time that there was an addictive effect to the cigarettes or what damage they could cause to people and the environment. (after a few years the walls start to yellow in the house, the smoke damages not only the air but the building itself. Plants barely survive in the house unless they are near a window, and the children get addicted.)
After meeting a man that would become her first husband (who also smokes), they get pregnant with their first child. Since little is still known about nicotine, tobacco, and smoking during pregnancy she smokes the entire time. This causes the baby to be born prematurely and it is difficult to know if the child will survive. He does and she has a second child a couple of years later, although this time she stopped smoking when she was pregnant. Of course, she picks it back up afterwards and continued to smoke her entire life. The first-born child develops poor lungs, either under developed or weak in general. It is determined that the child is allergic to smoke, but not known until he is around eleven years old. Asthma was the prime concern but the child didn’t seem to have breathing problems and played sports well when at school. (This allergy to smoke gets passed on to his children, and is magnified.)
The second son picks up the habits of both parents starting with cigarettes and leading to other drugs. It blossoms from there leading him to a criminal life, although he would change in his later years when he finally wakes up. The first-born son vows to never smoke or do drugs and never did. Growing up in a house where he saw both parents smoke, and watched them slowly deteriate, was enough to deter him. If that wasn’t enough when asked to clean the cars to earn extra money, washing the windows inside the car led to tar filled rags that yellowed quickly. Cleaning the house finds similar conditions on most of the windows, the floors, ceilings and counters. As the mother is constantly encouraged to stop smoking by family and doctors alike, she never does.
Her condition got worse, leading to stomach problems, than heart problems. At the ripe old age of only 54 years old she passes away of a heart attack. She was found by the ambulance waiting for them outside in the driveway and she had collapsed with a cigarette in her hand, never giving up what she loved the most.
This story is based on facts that occurred in my own life, as I am that first-born son. My oldest daughter has such a reaction to smoke that when my mother would kiss her on the cheek, her cheeks would blossom red like a welt. Cleaning the house after my mom passed revealed smoke stained walls in the bedroom with the smoke detector disconnected, burns in the sheets where she would fall asleep with the cigarette in hand and worse. No plants ever survived in our home, and the few pets we had died way to young, or ran away from home. Air was harmed in this story so much that it hurt more than just one life, and while this sounds as an anti-smoking advertisement, it holds much more than that. The leading cause of pollution in most houses is carbon monoxide, and that is one of the things that smoke creates. If you smoke I encourage you to stop, not just for you but for the very air that you are destroying along with all the lives that it effects.
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