4 Years

Cathy ZielskeCZ Life101 Comments


I  haven't smoked one single cigarette in 4 whole years as of today. Not a one.

If anyone out there thinks they just can't quit, you have to believe that you can. If an obsessive-compulsive nicotine addict like me can, I truly believe it's possible for anyone.

Now if I could just get over my love of white bread.

Cathy Zielske4 Years

101 Comments on “4 Years”

  1. #2
    Madeline St Onge

    Congratulations Cathy. I have quit too, about a year and a half now and it isn’t easy. Keep up the good work
    White bread is very easy to get over. πŸ™‚

  2. #5

    That’s huge, Cathy! Congratulations. As for the white bread, I’m write there with you, especially with some really good butter!

  3. #8

    Cathy, I wish I could convince my son to quit….but I guess he has to want it himself. I can only keep hoping and I know it must be an extremely hard thing to do. CONGRATULATIONS on 4 years! I’m so proud of you.

  4. #9
    Laura H.

    That’s so awesome Cathy! Congratulations on your 4 year anniversary. Also, tulips are my favorite. πŸ™‚

  5. #12

    Huge Congrats! My husband kicked the habit 3 years ago and I’m so proud of him!

    When I was pregnant, I craved white bread and ate it constantly. Then I had a dream I gave birth to loaf of Wonderbread. WHOA.

  6. #13

    What an accomplishment, Cathy. I’m so proud of you! I don’t smoke but it sure would be hard for me to give up my tea (hot or cold) so I know quitting smoking would be terribly difficult. Good for you!

  7. #14

    I remember the day you quit. I was cheering you on, fingers crossed and the whole bit. Congratulations on staying smoke-free! What an amazing accomplishment and an awesome gift to yourself and to your family! πŸ™‚

  8. #15

    Congratulations! Four years is a huge achievement and I’m sure you’ll not go back! I’m trying to quit bread full stop! I have a yeast intolerance and I need to do it but it’s hard! Good luck and keep up the good work!

  9. #18
    Donna U

    I know exactly how you feel. It was the hardest thing I ever did was to finally quit. I was still carrying around the gum at 18 months, then one day I just forgot that I didn’t have the gum with me, and that was when I knew I was going to be OK

  10. #21
    Sue in Grapevine

    I’m so proud of you!
    Both my parents were heavy smokers; only quitting for life-threatening conditions. But that was too late – I lost my father when I was 12 & my mother when I was 35. Your children will have your zany, loving self in their lives for a lot longer because you were able to conquer the most tenacious addiction. Heroin addicts say it was easier to get off that than to quit smoking.
    To life!

  11. #22

    That is so awesome Cathy! I have never developed that habit, but I have other bad habits – like sugar. Five months ago I gave up all candy. It really is like an addiciton for me. I can’t just have a handful of M&Ms. I have to eat the whole bag. I think it must be somewhat like a nicotine addiction and I am really empathetic toward that. I am working toward giving up all sugar and so far so good. My hat’s off to ya! Way to go. It’s inspiring – really…

  12. #23
    Mary Kay

    Yay, you! As for the bread, do you like sourdough? It has less of an effect on blood sugar that plain white (or even than wheat), so it doesn’t throw off your energy or metabolisim as much.

  13. #24

    CONGRATS! Must be something in the air in March, a friend of mine just celebrated two years smoke free yesterday – your lungs thank you too!

  14. #26
    Dawn Keckley

    So many congrats to you! My Dad quit a couple of decades ago, but my mom only after she had serious lung issues. She now has only one lung and is on oxygen almost all the time. A simple cold sent her into the hospital b/c of her pulmonary hypertension (one lung doing the work of two).

  15. #27

    Congrats to you. I too know habits–just not this one. A dear friend gives it up for pregnancy and then goes right back. Wish she could give it up for good, but as I said. . .I totally understand habits.

  16. #29
    cindy johnston

    It’s HUGE to give up the nicotine! Congrats to you! I myself gave it up over 8 years ago and it wasn’t easy but I am still so crazy happy I did! Still….every now and then I want one! ugh…why? I think they’re awful but I still miss that ‘feeling’ every now and then but then I realize no way am I ever going back to that habit! NEVER! πŸ˜€

  17. #30

    yeah for you! This August it will be 13 years for me – I don’t think I will ever forget the exact date either!

  18. #31
    Cindy Andrews

    Hi Cathy!

    We have something in common – I smoked my last cigarette March 17, 1994 – what is it about St. Patrick’s Day?!

    Congratulations on your anniversary!

  19. #32
    Pam K

    Congratulations! My dad quit smoking when he retired and wanted to watch my sons during the day. Hit home how much he truly loves my little ones. So proud of him. He had smoked since he was a child on the farm rolling his own cigs. That put him at about fifty years of smoking. WOW! Truly inspirational!

  20. #39
    Ana F.

    I lost 2 people in my family due to smoking (heart attack and lung cancer). And I always think that they could be here now if they had never smoked. So, I’m happy for you but specially happy for your kids! Congratulations!

  21. #40

    Congratulations Cathy! I have never smoked but I have been through addiction with my family. I know how much kids can be affected by the example their parents set for them. Good for you for quitting!

  22. #43

    Good for you!! You are doing a wonderful thing not only for yourself, but for the people who love you!!!! Keep up the good work!

  23. #44

    Cathy, WOW, what a superb anniversary to celebrate. We all have our own drugs (mine is chocolate), but smoking is the toughest and cruelest of all. The fact that it is still somewhat socially acceptable makes it tougher to quit. What a great lesson of persistence to your family (and by that I mean those to whom you are actually related and those of us who wish we were!)

  24. #45

    I almost don’t want to comment because I will be #45 and you’re 44 so who am I to bump you from your birthday number of quotes? How’s that for fuzzy logic? =)

    CONGRATULATIONS!!! You rock.

  25. #47
    Shana Dumblond

    Four years! Way to go.
    It has been over ten years for me. I still find sometimes that I crave just one…but then I take a deep breath and remember that when I smoked, I couldn’t do that.
    And I can relate to the white bread thing…but for me, it’s white rice.

  26. #49
    Christine H

    Hurray for you! That is one vice I never picked up. But that white bread addiction…..well, let’s just say I couldn’t be your sponsor at the 12 step program for white bread junkies.

  27. #51

    Congratulations! That is something to be really proud of!

    I can’t believe it has been 4 years. feels like yesterday.

  28. #53

    Girl, If you can figure out the white bread thing – let me know! I like whole wheat for breakfast, maybe a sandwich, but at night with dinner – white for me! Biscuits, bisquick angel muffins, french bread, crusty ciabatta, garlic bread (ina garten’s way and pioneer woman’s way) YUMM-OLA!

  29. #55
    Chubby Housewife

    you rock. That is AWESOME….I’ve never smoked but my mom did. She quit when she turned 60. I know she added YEARS to her life. She’s still kickin’ at 75….I wish the same for you…

  30. #56

    Awesome! I’ve read that quitting smoking is harder to do than quitting heroin! And I believe it! Nicotine should be outlawed!

  31. #57

    Congratulations, Cathy! I’ve heard nicotine is the hardest thing to get over. I wish I could shake my love of Diet Coke.

    You are awesome!!

  32. #58
    Kim in Cambridge, UK

    Hi Cathy,
    Congratulations on being a four-year non-smoker. You are such an inspiration.

    Now if I can only follow your lead…

  33. #60
    Paulette Sarsfield

    Congratulations Cathy!!! it’s been 12 years for me and it has to be one of my single most empowering accomplishments… I can’t tell you HOW MANY TIMES I thank myself for finally doing it…. now, if I could just give up the sugar (wink wink!) Happy day!

  34. #63

    When I hurt my wrist they asked the “when did you quit” question and I couldn’t believe it was 17 years ago. I now am working on the white bread by using sour-dough and cibatta breads. My DH is into Dave’s Killer Bread, but I’m just not there yet. One bite at a time, and my elephant of poor choices will be eaten. Tea and not smoking, more good choices that you have made. Good work on your part. Those elephants can be tough.

  35. #64
    Kathy Passmore


    I quit 2 years, 3 months, and 7 days ago. I was so hard core I couldn’t even NOT smoke in my house. I tried at least 10 times to quit before. When I finally did, it wasn’t that hard, because I was finally ready — thanks to Dr. Oz’s Quit Smoking Plan featured on Oprah, and Zyban and the Patch. Couldn’t have done it without all three.

  36. #66

    Have you ever tried making your own bread with half white and half HARD WHITE WHEAT? hard white wheat is more like regular flour and in fact my family doesn’t like it when I make bread without it now.
    p.s. my version of making bread is having my bread maker mix the dough and then I roll it out and put it in pans. I only do one raising of the dough.

  37. #68

    Way to go, Cathy! Your lungs and your family will thank you for kicking and staying off this poison long-term!

  38. #71

    My 25th anniversary will be this summer.
    I look forward to reading about your 25th right here!
    – Lee

  39. #73
    C@rol W


    From a lifelong non-smoker, I wholeheartedly thank you and so does my nose and lungs and clothes.

    Congrats! and keep up the excellent work.

  40. #74

    Congratulations!!! Oh, my, I’ve been reading your blog since before you quit.

    You are an inspiration to all those smokers out there who think they can’t quit. WTG, girl!

  41. #78

    COngratulations! That is awesome. My husband is trying to quit too — it is hard, as you know. If you figure out a way to get over white bread let me know — I need help in that area too! Congrats!

  42. #82

    Congratulations! I’m really glad that you care enough about yourself, and your family to make the commitment to quit. Right now, in fact, my dad, who smoked for almost 50 years is dealing with an infection in his lungs that has just about killed him. The smoking has completely ruined his lungs and he is battling to get over this. He looks like an 80 year old man and he is only 65. Sadly, he will probably not live to see 70. Smoking is just something that I never quite understood. I have never smoked, and am now dealing with my father, so please for yourself, and your children, please stay smoke free! Go You!

  43. #85

    Way to go! I can’t say I understand because I have never smoked. But I can only imagine how hard it would be to completely give up something that was a part of your life and routine!

    CONGRATS! Your body thanks you! πŸ™‚

  44. #86

    Have you tried White Wheat? I love it and it has lots of fiber. Not as good as whole grain- but it is a good step.

  45. #89


    Today I ordered the book Smoke Free In 30 Days from Amazon. I borrowed it from the library a few weeks ago and now I think I’m ready to quit. Fingers crossed.

    How was it for you? I’m nervous and scared.

  46. #93

    Congrats! Wish my hubby would follow your fine example. He is still a nicotine slave. πŸ™

    I am in love with your tulip picture πŸ™‚

  47. #94

    70 days ago I chucked in the habit!! So 4 years is HUGE!!! CONGRATULATIONS. And with the money I have saved I just bought both of your books πŸ™‚

  48. #100
    Noell Hyman

    Congratulations on your four clean years, Cathy! That’s so awesome.

    As for that white bread, it’s sorta like cigarettes. You need to find something else that you’ll enjoy instead. I happen to like garlic-stuffed green olives as my healthy snack indulgence. Yum. πŸ™‚

  49. #101
    Noell Hyman

    Okay, I’m a dork. I don’t know why I assumed your white bread consumption was for snacking and not sandwich-eating, or toast. I guess olives aren’t really a good substitute when you want something to spread jam on, are they?

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