I started smoking cigarettes when I was 15 years old. My mother had always smoked and I thought it was cool (what an idiot I was). By the time I went to uni in London at the age of eighteen, I was smoking ten a day. By the time I was in my mid-twenties, I was smoking over a pack a day. The day before I married my husband I had decided that I would simply quit smoking as we wanted to try for a baby. I had also started to notice it was affecting my health: I had a persistent cough, my chest was often tight and I was paranoid about getting lung cancer. I had really good intentions; having always told myself that I could give up at any time I genuinely didn’t think it would be too hard. I was so naive.I stocked myself up with Nicorette (gum and patches) from Boots and had visions of myself being fit and a non-smoker in no time. I lasted exactly two days into our honeymoon before I gave up. Over the next five years or so I continued to smoke. I had periods where I tried desperately hard to give up but I always went back to smoking. To my eternal shame, I even smoked occasional cigarettes when I was pregnant with my daughter. I honestly didn’t think that anything would make me quit. I just wasn’t strong enough. There was always a reason to smoke a cigarette; ‘I’ve had a bad day’, ‘I’m very stressed because of work / the baby / whatever’. It was selfish and awful but I just couldn’t stop. My husband had only ever been a social smoker and just didn’t understand why I was unable to kick the habit. One year and four months ago I bought, on a whim, a pack of ‘e-lights’ at the counter of the newsagent on the King’s Rd. I was on my way to the Royal Brompton to have a chest X-Ray due to my persistent coughing, and I didn’t want to have a cigarette because I knew the consultant would give me hell. I intended to use them before the appointment. After my consultation, I threw my cigarettes in the bin as I left the hospital and have been smoke-free – except for half of one which I had on New Year’s Eve in Spain and immediately regretted as it was so foul – ever since. I firmly believe that, had I not bought that pack of e-lights that day, I would be very ill now. NOTHING ELSE WORKED. Other nicotine replacements, such as gum, patches, etc, do not address the primary thing smokers need; the physical ‘throat hit’ as you inhale. Electronic cigarettes do this. They also allow smokers to still socialise with smoking friends, as you can just pull out an e-light in the pub if people decide to go otu to smoke. After a while, you can’t even tell the difference any more. I will always be ashamed of the fact that, ultimately, it was fear for my own health that caused me to quit smoking cigarettes, and that I couldn’t do it for my daughter. I will have to live with that but what I don’t have to live with, thanks to E-Lights, is a desperate life of coughing, wheezing and heart palpitations. I owe my life to E Cigarettes.