Health humour

I Think I’m Chewing Gum Wrong

Why are there instructions?

So on December 25th I did the impossible, again. I mean, it’s not the first time I’ve done this. I truly just hope it’ll be my last. I gave myself the gift of life and quit smoking.

So why do I say ‘the impossible’? If you’ve ever been a smoker and quit, you’ll understand that statement. It always seems possible until we try to do it, don’t succeed and then cry to ourselves “this is impossible”.


I can’t do this alone

Well, yes of course I can do this alone. Like no one can help me. But I can’t do it cold turkey. Nope. I tried that one too many times and that just ends up being a big fat disaster (read=I didn’t succeed).

I need aids. The last few times I tried to quit I’ve had an ecig but I don’t have one anymore. I threw them all out last time I quit smoking. Part of me is pissed off I tossed them but another part of me is thinking that was a great idea!!

I tried patches once and they just made me itchy and felt yukky.

So here I am today with nicotine gum. Don’t judge. It’s the lesser of all the evils in my opinion. And besides, this is my quit, not yours.

I have gum and it comes with instructions

So when I first opened the box I was shocked to find a booklet on how to use the gum. Huh? Can’t I just chew it?

Apparently not.

You have to ‘chew and park’ it. Then chew again and park it again. Keep doing that until it doesn’t tingle anymore. Tingle? Park? Chew?


This is too confusing for me already. You want me to park my gum in between my cheeks and gums (teeth) and then start it up again when a craving hits? I don’t understand.

I have cravings

One thing you should know about someone who has smoked for over 45 years, almost a pack a day, is this: I’m hard core addicted. Smoking is my life (what an odd thing to say). Like every single fucking thing I do revolves around smoking, when I can smoke, if I can smoke, do I have my filters, do I have a lighter, do I have enough smokes to get me through the night or should I buy more now?

It never ends. Your entire day is planned out with cigarettes in mind. I know, pathetic. But that’s how an addict’s mind works. If you’ve never been an addict you’ll never understand this.

Trying to understand the instructions

I read them a few times. I didn’t know what they meant by tingling and park and chew and wait and what? So I gave these instructions I try.

I chewed the gum for a few minutes and oh it was tingling…mmm. And then I parked it but I’m fairly certain it was a no parking zone because I immediately felt awkward and had to move the gum back into my mouth. To chew. More.

I have cinnamon Nicorettes and they are good. Really good. I don’t wanna park my fucking gum. I wanna chew the shit out of it. I want to chew it until it feels like a piece of rubber in my mouth.

And that’s exactly what I did and tossed the instructions in the garbage. Who reads these things anyway? 🤷‍♀️So to be fair, I did try their method and it didn’t work for me.

Wanna know what works for me? Chewing this little piece of cinnamony heaven until my craving goes away. And it always does.

They work anyway!

Quitting smoking and going through withdrawals is hard enough on its own, never mind having to follow instructions too. We just can’t. We’re freaking out. Don’t you get that?

I read the instructions, I applied them, I hated them, they stressed me out.

But I have to tell you, the gum works. Mine only has 2 mg of nicotine and as soon as I get a craving I pop that little cinnamon wonder into my mouth and the craving goes away. Period. Just like that!

Poof. It’s gone.

Who the fuck needs a booklet of instructions? I sure don’t.

My quit report

I’m happy to report at the time of this writing I’m 8 days into my quit and I feel pretty confident. But I say that every quit. I think I really mean it this time though. I say that too.

I’m almost 60. 58 to be exact and when I look in the mirror I can see what smoking has done to my skin. It’s gross. I know I can’t completely reverse the damage but I surely can make a dent in it.

Not only that, I’m tired of running out of breath when I walk and when I sing I want to sound just like Mariah Carey when I grow up. Or Celine Dion. Or even Christina!

And geezus what’s gonna happen next time I have sex? Have a fucking heart attack? Run out of breath and not be able to ‘finish’?? Eeep!

That would be bad and embarrassing. Hard pass.

So this time, ya, I honestly feel really good about my quit. I’ve been back at the gym for over two months now and I’m ready to take my workout to the next level. I could never do that before as a smoker.

But I’m not a smoker anymore. I’m a quitter (Yay). So whether or not I’m chewing the gum the right way, I know one thing for sure, it works and I’ll chew it the way I want (rebel).

Your turn!

If you put ‘quit smoking’ on your list of things to do this year, honestly, try the gum. Unless you can do it cold turkey. Go you!! I sure as fuck couldn’t.

You could also try ecigs. I mean, babe, you try whatever the hell you have to or want to. Quitting smoking is serious business and it’s not for the faint of heart. It’s hard.

And don’t give up. Ever. One day your quit will stick.

xo iva xo

Self help Guru|Expat|Website: mini self help eBook series here:

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