21 February 2008

Missing Picture

If you are the sort of person who notices that sort of thing, you'll have noticed that the sign which has proudly topped the list of "things down the left hand column" of this blog has gone.
I gave up smoking for Lent. I was 50 last year and decided then that, after 35 years, smoking would have to stop.
I worked out my own "how to": I had to as a bit of mild research showed that anything to do with the NHS would involve lots of sessions talking to people, and sharing. The thought of lots of people like me telling each other what they were going through would be enough to turn me back towards tobacco!
Why am I telling you this now? Well: partly because I want as many people as possible to pray for me that I persevere and offer this up for the three intentions I have dedicated it to; partly because the more people I tell, the more embarrassing it would be if I slip up and have to confess to being a failure; partly because it takes away the excuse to be curt or grumpy (because I'm offering it up); and partly because I want to share an insight that this has given me: that Lent is really something to be enjoyed. Giving something up for ever, rather than for six and a half weeks, hard though it is, has given me - pathetic though this might sound! - an insight into eternity that I have never known before.
So please pray for me, and for my three intentions, but think about and thank God for Lent.


Mulier Fortis said...

Prayers as always, Ttony! And good luck!

fr paul harrison said...

I have never smoked - honest! I will keep you in my prayers and ask for the gift of perseverance.

fr paul harrison

Anagnostis said...

May I add to your discomfort? I am an ex-smoker (or a smoker who no longer smokes) having chucked it during a bout of 'flu in the last week of 1999, after twenty years on pipes and untipped Gauloises, and a further five or so on British fags (concealable in 10 packs in blazer pockets).

I loved smoking - everything about it - and even today I gaze with sick longing over the newsagent's shoulder at those packets, like the images of lost loved ones. I still have smoking dreams. Only the thought of my children learning to call some other man "Daddy" keeps me on the straight and narrow (having lost my first wife to lung cancer).

Several years ago an eminent surgeon, and a fellow Scot, was the guest on Desert Island Discs. He spoke with feeling of having chucked it in the sixties, when it first began to fall into great disfavour amongst his profession. "Was it difficult?" asked Sue. "In thirty years" he groaned (one has to imagine the Scots accent) "not an hour has passed when I haven't craved a cigarette".

What a meritorious enterprise. I shall pray for you.

Ttony said...

Thanks Fr Paul (dressed properly to say Mass properly, I see) and Mac. Prayers really help.

Dear Moretben: thank you for welcoming me to the rest of my life! At least I still have wine and caviare.

Pastor in Monte said...

God bless: I shall certainly keep you in my prayers at the office today.
I've never smoked, but kicking the habit sounds like a beast.

Anonymous said...

Ace Moker
backslider: could you have give up something politicalkly correct fro Estaer? have to set you up with SMEAR (smokers expostulating against runnagates)