Cookies and Cigarettes

Yesterday my mom and sister and I baked Christmas cookies!  I absolutely LOVE Christmas and I think baking cookies is a warm hug of christmas spirit!  We made mexican wedding cookies (snowballs), peanut butter blossoms, butter cookies, and my sister’s famous chocolate chip cookies.  It was a blast and made much easier with the awesometastic stand mixer mom and dad got me for christmas last year.  We’ve decided this year to have a christmas brunch and then just graze on cookies, summer sausage, cheese logs, and truffles for the rest of the day instead of making a dinner.  I’m going to try a sausage brunch casserole this year!  I love to cook and bake when I can be creative.  “Making dinner” isn’t near as fun as Cooking, kwim?

Ok, cigarettes.  I have to admit I’m posting this conundrum in part to get peoples’ opinions but also because I know my cousin (Hi, CJ!) reads this blog and I’m hoping she can understand my reasoning and pass it on to the family.  I grew up in a smoke filled house.  My dad smoked like 2 packs a day.  Everyone I knew smoked cigarettes, we got “smoking section” at restaurants and, besides being in school, I was generally surrounded by cigarette smoke.  I understand that lots of people grew up this way and we all survived, right?  So this leaves people with little compassion sometimes for people who don’t want to be around second hand smoke.  But think about how things are these days.  There is no such thing as smoking sections and restaurants, there aren’t smoking sections at work anymore.  Even my friends that smoke (tsk tsk) don’t do it in the house.  If you don’t smoke these days the closest you get to second hand smoke is that smelly coworker that thinks the perfume is masking the stink (dude, it is SO not).

Second hand smoke definitely gives me a contact headache.  Even if no one is smoking in a “smoking” house the smell is so thick that a headache is an assurance.  My husband’s father died of lung cancer before he was 40.  There is alot of other types of cancer in DH’s family and he is rightly feeling that he is “high risk” and wanting to avoid carcinogens.  I have always just “handled” the smoke since it is only a few times a year at family functions.  Then we got pregnant.  Second hand smoke is very bad for a fetus obviously.  And I certainly don’t want it in my newborn’s lungs.  But, do I want it anymore in my 3 or 4 year old’s lungs?  Probably not.  

So here is my problem.  Some of my family get togethers are going to be smoking events (luckily we rent a hall for Thanksgiving and have lots of outdoor activities in the summer).  One of those is Christmas Eve.  I LOVE christmas eve.  I love to see all my cousins and aunts and uncles!  But I really just can’t justify exposing my baby to the second hand smoke.  And I KNOW how DH feels about it.  He feels absolutely no way!  I don’t have any wind in my sails to argue with him.  I personally miss my family and I worry about my daughter not getting to participate in christmas eve activities too.  😦  But I have to make a decision and we really can’t justify that exposure to her nor am I going to argue with my husband about his very real fear of cancer.  And, of course, I don’t expect anyone else to change their plans for my (minority) opinion.  We used to have christmas eve out at a restaurant and that was great.  I could also offer my house next year, which I’m thinking about.  Of course, they’ll know why I’m doing it and probably won’t be happy.  I asked my parents to be honest with why I’m not there.  I don’t really want to lie about it.  But I don’t want anyone to think I’m doing it in a snotty way either.  I’m not trying to be “high and mighty” – it is just a personal decision not to be around second hand smoke.  We have friends whose homes we don’t go to either.  We go out with them but not to their house.  

I guess that’s the story.  I just want my family to know that I miss them a christmas and my decision is not a comment on their choices.


6 thoughts on “Cookies and Cigarettes

  1. Having a smoke-free home, after 30 years of yellow walls and ashes everywhere, is a wonderful thing. Not smoking or being addicted to the activity is like freedom. By the way – I have lots of ash trays if anyone wants them. I don’t blame anyone for not wanting their kids around it. I think it definitely adversely effected my kids health.


  2. My DH smokes and it has been a sore spot for me. There were times when I even felt forced to inhale smoke while I was pregnant. I would go outside in 16 degree weather to avoid it. Me, not him. It was depressing at best. I even think it was lucky that we were separated during the first trimester due to moving.

    I had previously had a miscarriage, and back then both my DH and his brother–who lived with us at the time–smoked in the apartment. I tried to talk to him about quitting. At least about his brother quitting since he was just being a bum and I was the only one working at the time. My DH was laid off and his brother is just plain lazy and irresponsible.

    Anyway, one day the discussion went like…
    Him: I smoked around (ex’s name) and our kids were fine.
    Me: Really, and do either of them have asthma?
    Him: Yes, (son’s name).
    Me: Oh yeah, that’s perfectly fine.

    Well, where we moved to, he wasn’t allowed to smoke indoors, so I only had to put up with it briefly unless we were in the car. He smoked in there and I kept the window rolled down and my head facing the wind. Not that that made it okay, but at least I didn’t feel like I was inhaling from a chimney. He now only smokes in the car when we’re not with him.

    It has been a slow process getting him to make these changes. Now he’s trying to quit which should make me happy, but have you been around someone in the detox process? Their misery makes you miserable too. It doesn’t help that he has almost no willpower. This is going to be a long, hard road.

    Anyway, I’m writing a novel now… Yes, honesty is the best policy. It’s not even about whether or not someone’s feelings will be hurt. It’s about the baby. You’re the momma now, so you get to decide what’s best for your angel. If your decision is no smoking, everyone else will have to live with it.


  3. Thanks for sharing your story Lexie. I have to say that the first week my Dad quit smoking he made me cry like 3 times. I couldn’t even stand to be around him because he was so grouchy. I wish you all the best in surviving the quitting phase and kudos to your DH for making a difficult but wonderful decision.


  4. I’m the one you’re waiting for, right? lol
    Listen, I’m not here to pass judgement on you as I hope you don’t with me- I totally respect your decisions and I agree with you. Even myself, being a smoker, can’t handle the smoke clouds that come along with family functions sometimes. I did NOT know that about DH’s father and I was really surprised and sorry when I heard that from your Dad tonight- I had no idea.
    Now, of course I know the effects of cigarettes and secondhand smoke and don’t need to be reminded of it, I do that to myself everyday… It is a hard addiction to break and I really am proud of your Dad for breaking free from it– I hope to do it very soon as well… My doctor plans to prescribe Chantix for me after the New Year.
    The only other comment I can make is this– We all love you and want to be a part of you and your family’s lives but I think maybe you underestimate our family a little bit. No one has a problem going outside to smoke on Thanksgiving and when my kids were babies I made it known that I did not want them exposed to the smoke and people went outside to do so…and no one ever made a big deal out of it. While I may not be as strict as I was when my children were newborn, I try to keep them out of the rooms where people are smoking.
    Tonight, everyone smoked in the basement and Michael had a window upstairs opened but it was not smokey upstairs. I think the key is communication and I think you’d be surprised to find out that no one would have a problem with respecting your request. Keep this in mind for the next family function because we missed you there tonight. You’re not the only one in the family that feels this way either- believe me… Don’t ever feel like you have to apologize or justify your decisions… You’re doing the right thing and I respect you for that. I’ll bring it up if you want me to– you know I have a big mouth.. ha ha
    I hope you have a wonderful Christmas and I WILL see you at the next family function!
    P.S. Good job on the cookies! They’re delicious!! :o)
    Love you!


  5. Just wanted to let you know that we are adamant about smoking around our son, and at my moms house that was also a problem. I told her that Aven would not be exposed to it, (they could come to my house or make other arrangements, etc etc) so she makes all the smokers go outside when there is a get together. I’m sure they all know why, and I am the bitch for it, but I really don’t care. Aven is number 1. I mean if you take a look at the kids with asthma and lung issues a pretty high percentage come from smoking homes. That is a chance I refuse to take. So good for you, stick to it.


I'd love to hear your comments or questions!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s