Because I enjoy it. End of post – or at least it ought to be. If you subtract the “evils of nicotine” from the argument, accept that nicotine isn’t doing me much harm and further accept that ecigs aren’t doing me anywhere near the harm that tobacco was, then my enjoyment of vaping should be a good enough argument. I enjoy it more than I enjoyed smoking. Firstly you have to accept that I’m not vaping to relieve withdrawal, and I didn’t smoke to relieve withdrawal either. I smoked because I enjoyed it. The caveat to smoking was the knowledge that I was damaging my health, and possibly (although I question the science) damaging the health of people and animals around me. It was certainly not a pleasant environment to inflict on others. I smoked because without nicotine I had long term problems that I couldn’t resolve. After 5 years of not smoking, both the physical and psychological dependence on smoking could surely be said to have gone. Health benefits should have been apparent by that time. If I got nothing more from smoking than the relief of withdrawal from nicotine, then I would have been able to stay off cigarettes permanently.
Nicotine patches and gum did not work for me. So a reasonably constant background nicotine level was obviously not my answer either. The pleasure that I was getting from smoking was not something that I could recreate with NRT. As vaping does work I have to look at how the nicotine was delivered. When I smoked I could vary the amount of nicotine I was getting, I could inhale different amounts in different ways for either a stimulant, or a relaxant effect. If that were the only thing, then surely the inhalator’s effect would do the same. It doesn’t, because it only allows a uniform fixed dosage, and that can’t be changed with mood or need for ad-lib use. At least I think that’s the case from my experience. It also tastes foul and doesn’t feel good in the hand or in the mouth, it is a medicine which is designed to be used to relieve withdrawal, not a consumer product from which I can gain enjoyment.
There’s the difference, in a nutshell. Smoking was something I enjoyed, because I enjoyed the benefits I got from it. These days that statement is the ultimate in non politically correct statements. I didn’t like the smell of stale smoke, but I loved fresh smoke. I didn’t much like the taste after that first beautifully flavoured drag of each ciggy, but that rich, mellow first drag made up for it. What I liked most was how it made me feel. Just like a nice warm mug of rich creamy hot chocolate, with a nip of something naughty in it, fresh cream and marshmallows floating on top. Undoubtedly bad for me, but a sinful delight, with sensual relaxation as the goal. Am I painting the experience in too bright a palette? No. I’m not. I loved to smoke. I hated being told not to smoke, as much as you’d hate being told your wicked secret delight was being banned “for your own good.”
For me vaping works because it replaces everything about the cigarettes I loved. I have the perceived benefits of nicotine use. One of these days I will switch down to zero nicotine, whether temporarily or permanently, and blog the experience. I’ll do it to see whether the perceived nicotine benefits are real or in my head. I can tell you now though, that my daily routine now has 45 minutes of me saying things like this where it used to be 15:
I put this down to building back up my nicotine levels. I don’t vape as soon as I wake up. I’m not desperate for it in order to perform normal parts of life like grunting at people helping me with working out which part of my body is my head. The first cigarette of my day was sacred. Nothing happened until after I had smoked that cigarette, sitting in my office on the reclining chair with a bucket of black coffee and the sacred first fag. The world could have been ending round me and I would not have cared. I was too brain fogged to function. Since I started vaping I can make it to dressed and sitting in the living room before coffee and vape. I’m still at Neanderthal communication levels until after vaping, but no one dies getting me downstairs. The thing is that a vape will stop this. It might take longer than a cigarette took to get there, but I will be human again. Without a vape, I really would want to smoke. Every day. It doesn’t ease. Five years is long enough to feel like that, thank you.
Vaping tastes good. Lots of flavours to switch things up with, from fruit, to deserts, to sweets. My taste buds love me. This is part of what makes vaping better than smoking for me, and no I wouldn’t have made it past day three of switching to vaping without those flavours. I love to vape the different flavours and I use four different flavours most days – what those flavours are vary themselves from day to day. Yes, I love strawberry and cherry flavours, bubblegum (which is a fruit flavour) and peach, passion fruit and jelly sweets; I don’t eat them because they’re full of sugar and everyone tells me that responsible adults limit their sugar intake. I’d rather have the sweets than the fruits any day, but I’ll take it without calories in a vape. And why not, I enjoy it! The main thing that makes vaping work for me is that it directly replaces the pleasure I got from smoking, in a way that medicinal products never could. So yes, I’m a non smoker because I want to be a non smoker; I’m a vaper because I enjoy it.
Please Support the NNA so that their voice for vapers can be heard loud and clear. Add your name as a supporter and then find the Paypal donate button on the right of the main page. Follow @NNAlliance on Twitter.
Medical professionals please see M.O.V.E and add your voice.