Take with thee These Smokes

They say the veil is thin this time of year and that means that, Mama you should be back right about now. We've set an altar to our dead and placed upon it your photo. Our oldest son added candy from his Halloween haul and some dog food for the animal spirits who will visit. It's all very sweet, but not the reason I write this.

Mama, this year after your visit from the other world, I need you take back with you my addiction to cigarettes. I can't seem to give them up this time and I need your help here.

It has always been easy for me to regulate and then let go of my smoking in the past but this time I am finding it really hard. I picked it back up with the addition of our 3rd child and then relied on it as a crutch for my anxiety while I was waiting for the breast cancer results.

Frankly I don't smoke THAT much. Maybe 3 cigarettes a day, 5 on a bad day, 1 if I'm trying to reel it in.

I don't smoke a pack or two a day like you did.

But the problem this time is that I can't seem to put it behind me. I married a smoker, started dating him while I was a non-smoker, when I had my addiction under control. I found out he was a smoker once I figured we were going to spend our lives together and I had a hunch it would be a problem for me some day. The some day is now.

ama, this was always your thing. With your stacks of quarters and your marching orders for me to the corner store, with note in hand to buy your brand. Benson & Hedges Lights 100's. And the ash burning long as you drove the car without rolling down the windows

Cigarettes were yours. Nicotine fits were yours.

I made it to my late teens before trying one myself, with Jennifer Walton in a parking lot in Temecula, Marlboro Reds, I don't know why we bought them, maybe cause we were 18 and could do what we wanted by them. But we didn't find them appealing.

Then in my early 20's sitting in the front seat of my Toyota Tercel on a break from my waitressing job, be-moaning some thing about my life, a thought cheered me up. “At least I am not addicted to cigarettes.”

But not long after this, Mom, I met Paul. The roommate/friend/character of Karma who will at one point need my math tutoring skills. Then one evening while working through some algebra together he will get up to have a smoke. I will sit at the table and do whatever a person did with idle time in 1997.

Then when Paul returns, we will hunch back over the math together and I will get a whiff of the smoke on his hands and through some magic of olfactory teleportation, I will suddenly feel very small, very young, very vulnerable, and very much in need of my mother.

This needy feeling will rise up in me the way smoke rises to god and it will hit my brain and I will become conscious of it. I will find the hole inside of me and I will fill it up with cigarettes and a one-sided love affair with Paul. He will show me how to have a nightlife, how to drink, how to party, how to pursue shallow relationships with shallow people. He will be my consistent access to smokes.

Then I will smoke with my girl friends in college and after college. I will learn that it's really only smoker waitresses who every get and take breaks.

I will give it up and then smoke again in easy succession over many years. I will find it easy to regulate, smoking 1 cigarette a day at roughly 2pm for over a year, save a weekend here or there when the booze flows freely and boundaries fly out the door.

But I'm done now. I don't want to smoke anymore and I need you to take it from me.

Now that you are dead and magic and part of the great beyond, I need you to take this addiction back with you.

I really want to live a long and lovely life.

I want control over myself and my actions.

I want to be bigger than this.

Tonight I will roll myself one last cigarette. I will add in lavender and oregano and mullen, fuck I don't know. I will roll it up and I will place it on the altar. I will light it and let it burn but I will not take a drag. I will let it become ash.

I will not smoke cigarettes again.

I will not smoke cigarettes again.

I will not smoke cigarettes again.

So mote it be.

Not my mother's hand, but could be.

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Hey I'mVicki
Standing at the crossroads of 
Divine Intervention &
The province of Dreamers

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