I had to deliver an oxygen unit and a hospital bed this morning. I stepped inside the elderly couple's home and it reeked of cigarette smoke. Gross, I thought almost instinctively. Adorning the dingy walls was pictures of a military man, most likely Army, and he looked so young and dapper -- so virile and fit. The man that faced me in the bedroom looked like the shell of that once proud man. He looked defeated and forlorn. But he was still smoking.
"Emphysema," The man told me as I was putting together the bed.
My beforehand desire for a cigarillo faded away. I put together the bed and showed the elderly fellow how to use the oxygen unit.
"Don't smoke while using the unit," I told the man. "It will blow up!"
As I was leaving his wife gave me a ten dollar tip. "Thank you, ma'am," I told her. I was overjoyed to get the money.
It has been years since I've even entertained stopping smoking, but wanted to today. It was hours later when I finally lit up a cigarillo knowing my fate would be similar to that elderly gentleman who could barely breathe without help. Will I quit? A few more deliveries like today and I just may.