As I mentioned before, everyone smoked in my family. I started smoking at age 18, which means that I fought my environment, but when I started, I became a real addict.
I quit smoking twice. The first time was during a trip in Egypt, that I took with my friend Liliane. I remember going to an Egyptian doctor when I started coughing my lungs out. For three solid days, I was just too sick to even think of smoking and I was clever enough to quit for the first time. It wasn’t difficult at all then.
The second time was just awful. I think it was in June 1975 and I experienced all kinds of withdrawal symptoms. I should certainly have waited for the end of the schoolyear, because years later, I met a former pupil of mine and as I am hopeless at faces and didn’t recognise her, she reminded me of the time when she was my pupil by saying
I’m sure you’ll remember when I tell you that it was the year when you quit smoking!
And she was right, I did remember! I must have been in a foul mood for HER to remember.
Years later, in 1984, I was pregnant with my daughter Julie and pretty scared at the idea of giving birth.
And I had a dream:
I was starting to experience labour pains and my husband drove me to hospital. When I got there, they took me to a birthing room and made me lie down. The pains were so bad that I told Roland I just couldn’t take it.
Please go and buy me a pack of cigarettes.
And there, in dreamland, off he went for the cigarettes.
I lit one, and it was the best cigarette ever! It was one of these incredibly real dreams. I could feel myself inhaling the smoke. And it felt so good. And no nurse around to stop me! 😉
Nine years without a cigarette, and I was still dreaming about it. I’ll never touch one again. I know I’d go back to addiction straight away.