Breathe Easy. It's really that Easy.

Disclaimer: I have partnered with Breathe Easy Maine.  All opinions expressed in my post are my own.   

Several years ago, well, 12 years, 6 months and 8 days ago, my life changed forever and left a gaping whole in my heart. My mom died from small cell lung cancer. The type of cancer one gets from years of smoking and damaging their body. As a child, I feared that day would come.  I hated thinking about it... losing my mom to smoking. I would push those thoughts down way deep with hopes that my greatest fears would never come true.

Only 3 months before my mom died.

Then it came, September 15th. My dad called me at work to let me know that they had been to a doctor and that the pneumonia the doctors thought she had was actually lung cancer.  The doctor had given her three to six months to live.  In actuality, she died less than a month after diagnosis.

My mom and dad welcoming the only grandchild she would meet.

Smoking tore apart my family. It stole my mom, my son's grandmother, the grandmother my daughter would never meet, my husband's mother-in-law. It stole my dad's best friend, the woman he was supposed to spend the rest of his life with. It shredded my relationship with my sister.

Those she left behind my sister, dad, and myself.
As you can tell, I'm still rather bitter about what smoking did to my family... and rightfully so.  What's even worse is that it continues to tear apart families.  It continues to hurt people and their loved ones over and over again. Smoking even impacts your pets.  They love their owners unconditionally, and in return, when you smoke in the home, their lungs are exposed to the harmful chemicals and impacts of secondhand smoke.

Secondhand smoke impacts more than you know. Kids are exposed to secondhand smoke in their homes and cars. It makes me angry to see children in cars with adults who are smoking. This is illegal in the State of Maine. Yet it is challenging to enforce. The best way to enforce this law is for the adults in charge to make the vow to have their cars and homes smoke-free zones. If the adults must smoke, I completely understand addiction, then please have the impacts of the nicotine affect themselves and not their loved ones, children, and pets.

We have taken the pledge to have a smoke-free home. We actually made this pledge years ago. Our entire property is considered a smoke-free zone. I do not want any kind of secondhand smoke impacting my kids, pets, or family. A great way to show your commitment to a smoke-free home that is to take the Breathe Easy Maine Smoke-Free Homes Pledge.

Above I spoke about my mom smoking for all those years. I love my mom very much. I know she didn't mean to do any harm to me as a child. However, I strongly feel that her smoking had a lot to do with my asthma. It has taken me many years to learn how to manage it, but I have. Asthma doesn't go away.  It sticks around with you forever. It can improve, but it doesn't really go away. Asthma can definitely get worse and it can cause death. I don't think people who smoke are really intending for the people around them taking in their secondhand smoke to die, but it is a definite possibility.

So, please, if you smoke, or know of someone who does smoke, please take the pledge
to make your home a smoke-free zone and encourage others to do the same. Think
about your loved ones.


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