Do You Feel Guilty When You Smoke?

To have a parent walk into our school and say, “You know Kelli, I am usually a very conservative individual but when it comes to a mom leaving with a cigarette hanging from her mouth and her child in the backseat, I am not!” moves me to write this blog.

 
Isn’t it wonderful to know when your baby is growing inside of your womb, you are presented a clean slate with his/her genes, a new heart, a new set of lungs, etc. What you eat and drink affects them while you are pregnant. How much sleep/rest you get will affect the unborn child. The entire environment of which you live, work and play will have an effect on your growing fetus. The air of which you breathe, whether it’s inside of your home, outside, inside of another facility (of which you don’t have more control on the pollutants), etc. will have an impact on your fetus while you are pregnant or your child in the backseat of your car. Whether you choose to light up inside of a closed vehicle, the windows wide open, or before you transport your child, the smoke will make a lasting impact on the clean lungs your child began its young life with. Upper respiratory issues will last longer with a child who is exposed to smoke as opposed to a child who isn’t. Some will even develop asthma, chronic coughs and possibly lung cancer later because of the second hand smoke exposure. Parenthood is a gift.

 
I am here to say, with my family I watched my dad take his last breath as he lay dying in the hospital from lung cancer. The man took up smoking when he was 13 years old when filtered cigarettes were not cool. To see him in his dying days gasp for air was heart-wrenching. We were all very close to my dad and he meant the world to us. My children will tell you what they saw in my dad’s suffering in his dying days, made a significant impact on whether they will take up smoking themselves. I’m certain your children all look up to you as well. Ask yourself, while being selfish in a smoking habit; is it worth it to my beautiful baby?

 
I am pleading with you to participate in this habit away from your children, not in an enclosed environment or in front of them, but so they can choose whether or not they would like to scar their lungs and future.