It finally occurred to me that the rage issues I thought I was having on Chantix were actually withdrawal symptoms.
I used it to quit smoking for 9 months last year with no problems, but the day after my quit date, I ended up in the hospital for like 9 days with pneumonia. If I was having any major withdrawals then, I would have attributed it to just feeling like crap in general and the pervasive fear I have of being in hospitals or dealing with doctors.
And apparently, knowing what it was was enough. I've been back on it, haven't had a cigarette in 11 days now, and this week is going much better than last week as far as the wanna-gouge-out-my-own-eyes thing goes.
I had to think about what the drug actually DOES. All it does is turn off the nicotine receptors in your brain. It never stopped me from wanting or physically needing nicotine, it just made it pointless to use it because I wasn't getting anything from it anymore. It's a lot like quitting cold-turkey, but it's easier to stay stopped when I know smoking a cigarette won't work anymore.
And I was on Chantix because I've had adverse reactions to every other method of NRT. The gum and lozenges just make me nauseous, but the patches left round, red, raised blistery sores that took WEEKS to heal, and left scars on my back and sides. Some lasted a couple of months.
I think I was just relieved to know that what I was feeling was natural. It wasn't anxiety or some personal defect. I wasn't going crazy, I was just jonesing. I think I'm more anxious overall than I was before I quit, but I've gone over 48 hours without an asthma attack, and that's something completely new in my world.
And Patchouli, if you're reading this, I just want to say thanks. I've really gotten a lot out of some of your responses, but was never able to let you know, so here we go. Thanks 😀