Thursday, January 15, 2009

Tobacco-Paying the Ultimate Price

Eleven years ago my mother died.

I am not sure when she started smoking. She might have picked it up from dad, and they got married in 1940. In the early 60's Dad applied his incredibly honed discipline that framed his successful law practice and his very organized personal life and decided to quit. It stuck. My mother was not so fortunate.

In 1985, a year after my father passed away, my mother decided to quit. It was hard, and it was a wee bit trying to be around her. Then, unfortunately she developed shingles. She decided that this was a sign from the Lord that the stress level in her life was too high and He was allowing her to go back to smoking. (huh?) Through the years she dealt with many bouts of pneumonia, and in December, 1998, was in the hospital again. After two weeks of no response to treatment, the doctors ordered a CAT scan. Lungs full of cancer. She was gone in five days.

She would have been 94 tomorrow. She might have died from something else if not cancer, but I do know that the health and even societal compromises experienced by a smoker make for a high price to pay.

1 comment:

  1. I'm so sorry your mother passed that way. I'm sure it was very hard. I've not lost a parent so far.

    My granny decided to quit smoking after 50+ years about 6 months ago. Set them down, cold turkey, no problems. When I found out she quit I told her how excited I was and she said, "Well, I could have quit anytime I wanted; I just hadn't wanted to and now was the time". OK Granny!

    But really, she's never been grouchy and says she hasn't craved them since.