When I think about the numerous mistakes I’ve made I sometimes wonder what would have happened if I had made a different choice. Looking back and figuring out what the mistakes were is a simple matter, but changing the consequences does not always mean that a more beneficial outcome would have resulted.
While playing with my granddaughter in the town center in Rockville yesterday I got into a conversation with someone who showed a bit of wonder at the fact that I was able to quit smoking. Smoking jumps out as one of the stupidest things I ever did (I smoked for eight and a half years, through high school, college, and a bit thereafter).
I had tried to quit several times without success but when the price of cigarettes jumped to 60 cents a pack affordability became a real problem. At the time I was only able to find a 20 hour a week job making minimum wage, which was $1.65 per hour at the time, so doing the math shows that I was really having problems making ends meet.
Quitting was the hardest thing I ever did and after I had not smoked for two weeks I knew that I finally had the habit licked, as I continually told myself that if I ever smoked another cigarette then the previous two weeks would have been for naught.
Obviously, never having started would have been the smart thing and if I were to go back then that would be the case. However, knowing at the time that I had done something that so many others had tried and failed gave me a real sense of accomplishment, and I felt that if I could do that then I could do many other things, a feeling that I had never experienced to that extent in the past.
This print is part of the Braddock Equivalents project and was made on Strathmore Bristol Smooth paper with handmade silver gelatin emulsion (AZO formula).