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No stepping around my bad habit

It's easy to quit smoking, the old saying goes. I've done it plenty of times.

I picked up the habit just a few years ago, a byproduct of where I was spending my free time. But when I got married last year, I decided to quit. And I did, for a few weeks. And I picked it up again. And I quit again. And I "secretly" kept

Turns out I wasn't kidding anyone. That smell? Yeah, kids smell it too. And they may be polite about it to your face, but they find it disgusting.

The other day we were walking into a restaurant and saw a woman sitting out front, smoking a cigarette. It was downright scary. Her skin was actually gray. I don't know what caused it, but the girls and I looked at each other and knew that the cigarette she was smoking couldn't have helped.

"Remember what you just saw if you ever think of taking up smoking," I said when we were far enough away from the smoker.

"I know," Pax said. "Lucky thing you stopped."

Ouch. She knew. I had kidded myself into thinking that the girls didn't know I had been smoking every day. Just stop in the early afternoon, and by the time you get home, no one will be the wiser, I thought. The girls weren't that dumb, thank you very much.

I really have stopped smoking. Haven't had a cigarette at all since July 11. They say you take it one day at a time, and that's true at first. But after a while, you do stop thinking about it. I don't remember what was "fun" about smoking, but I do know what's fun about being a husband, being a stepfather, anticipating biological fatherhood. To blow that away for the "pleasure" of a puff of smoke? Not me. Not anymore. Too much to live for.

Categories: Health (111), Rafael Olmeda (59), Step-parenting (59)


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About the authors
Gretchen Day-Bryant has a son in high school and a daughter in middle school. She’s lived to tell about the struggles of juggling little kids and work.
Joy Oglesby has a preschooler...
Cindy Kent Fort Lauderdale mother of three. Her kids span in ages from teenager to 20s.
Rafael Olmeda and his wife welcomed their first son in Feb. 2009, and he's helping raise two teenage stepdaughters.
Lois Solomonlives with her husband and three daughters.
Georgia East is the parent of a five-year-old girl, who came into the world weighing 1 pound, 13 ounces.
Brittany Wallman is the mother of Creed, 15, and Lily, 7, and is married to a journalist, Bob Norman. She covers Broward County government, which is filled with almost as much drama as the Norman household. Almost.
Chris Tiedje is the Social Media Coordinator and the father of a 7-year-old girl, and two boys ages 4 and 3.
Kyara Lomer Camarena has a 2-year-old son, Copelan, and a brand new baby.

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