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How Quickly We Get Addicted


a personal note from joe
By Joe Eszterhas, Holywood Screenwriter

I’ve been through my share of fights in my life, of course, and in my career. But there is no greater fight than the one I faced after being diagnosed with throat cancer at The Cleveland Clinic. I thought to myself, I can’t do this. I can’t stop smoking.

I started smoking when I was 12 years old, and it was one of the great joys in my life. Nearly 45 years later, my addiction had grown to four packs a day. I never flew from LA to New York without stopping in Chicago or Denver to have a cigarette. The last thing I did each night and the first thing I did each morning was smoke a cigarette. I got up at 4 or 5 in the morning to smoke a cigarette and then went back to sleep. I even got into a food fight on the patio of a fancy Malibu restaurant because someone objected to me smoking. The cops had to be called. I was what you might call a ‘Mad-Dog’ smoker.

It’s been four years since I had three-quarters of my larynx removed, and I am proud to say that I am cancer free. I am even more proud to say that I am smoke free. Over the last two years, hundreds of smokers and former smokers have joined me in my fight against Big Tobacco. And now, The Cleveland Clinic — home of “Join Joe” (www.clevelandclinic.org/joinjoe) — is working to make its campus smoke-free to help you live your life free of this deadly addiction.

I quit smoking by summoning every ounce of will power at my command, by radically changing my lifestyle and by asking God to help me. I didn’t think I could do it, but I did. I know that if I did, so can you.

Joe Eszterhas

 

 

 

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