James’ Vaping Success Story

Last week we sent out a call to our customers via the blog asking them to share their vaping success stories. A few hours later, we were overwhelmed by the number of people who took the time to send in their personal narratives on how the freedom to vape has improved their lives.

Without further ado, this is James’ story:

My is James. I am 44 years old and the father of two beautiful children, James who is 15, and Arieonna who is13. I would like to take this opportunity to tell you my personal Vaping story.

I started smoking cigarettes early in high school, as a way to rebel and gain independence. Back in the late 80′s, there wasn’t nearly as much negativity towards tobacco as there is today, and therefore it wasn’t considered a ‘big deal’ for me to smoke. In fact, there were still smoking patios at the high schools where kids went for their cigarette breaks! I enjoyed smoking very much, and had no thoughts of quitting throughout my teenage years and into my early twenties. I was not experiencing any negative effects of smoking, and still remained active in sports.

It was in my mid twenties when I really started thinking about quitting smoking. I had heard all of the data on smoking and cancer, emphysema, etc, and as the warnings on the cigarette packs grew, so did the negative stigma surrounding cigarettes. With more and more places going smoke free – restaurants, malls, and even bars – I wanted to be free from the burden of going outside every hour for my fix. I still enjoyed cigarettes, but was now starting to wake up on occasion with a sore throat, and cough little yummy yellow phlegm in the mornings. I tried to quit cold turkey a number of times throughout my 20′s, but was never successful for more than a few days. I tried the patch, which made me itchy and moody, but didn’t work at all. I lasted one day and all I could think about was a cigarette. I tried nicotine gum, which tasted terrible, gave me heartburn, and lasted me about 2 days before returning to cigarettes. The price of smoking had been going up since I started, from just $2.50 a pack to $6-$7 a pack, and it seemed every few months the government was issuing some additional surcharge on cigarettes just to drive the price up more.

I finally tried Zyban, a prescription drug that had a slightly higher success rate then patches or gums. I lasted a long time with the Zyban, going several months without a cigarette. The only problem was that the drug was causing me to not be able to eat –not a bad thing as I could lose a few pounds — but I literately would go into a restaurant starving, take two bites of my food, and feel sick to my stomach. I had to stop Zyban, but I actually started smoking again.

When I entered my thirties, I could really start to feel the effects of twenty seven years of smoking on my body. I would wake up every morning with a buildup of phlegm that would need to be coughed up before I could start my day. Most evenings I would get a tightening in my chest, and a sharp pinch when I inhaled deeply. I was easily winded, often needing to catch my breath just walking up from my basement to my kitchen. I had an aggressive smokers cough that made me sound like I had bronchitis all the time. I was also spending nearly $10 per pack of cigarettes, and smoking around a pack a day. I felt I just had to find a way to stop smoking before it was too late.

In late 2009 I saw an ad for an electronic cigarette on a website. I had seen e-cigarettes before a few years back, but the kits were several hundred dollars, which I just couldn’t justify spending at the time. I did some research, and found someone selling e-cigarettes in my town locally, and picked up my very first IPV Mini 2. Unlike some people’s success stories, my moving from traditional tobacco smoking to Vaping was not an instant or immediate result. I continued to smoke, but would vape as well. I slowly (and unconsciously) over the next few weeks started vaping more often, and smoking cigarettes less.

One day, about two weeks after getting my IPV Mini 2 a strange thing started happening. I actually started preferring the taste and feeling of vaping, over my cigarettes. I actually started disliking the taste in my mouth when I had a cigarette. When I woke up in the morning, reaching for my vaporizer was the first thing on my mind, instead of going out for my morning cigarette. I decided about three weeks after getting my vap that the next day, when I woke up, I was simply going to go as long as I could without a cigarette, using only my IPV Mini 2. Well I lasted through the day without any problems, and the next day the same thing, and the next.

After just a few days being cigarette free, I really started noticing the terrible smell of cigarettes when I would be with someone who was smoking. My jacket still smelled like old cigarettes, so I washed everything I had. I found I could wash my hands in the morning, and they would smell like soap for hours! I would put on cologne, and I could smell it all day. The first physical thing I noticed was that I was coughing less and less throughout the day, and that the pinching feeling in my lungs had stopped. I still got out of breath fairly easily, but could definitely feel an improvement in my breathing and lungs. I found I slept better, and overall just felt so incredibly free all the time. I could vape anywhere. I remember going to my parents house on a Sunday for lunch and pulling out my Vapor, and puffing a big vape. My mom’s jaw dropped. After explaining to her how it works, she was very excited and supportive of it. Of everyone in my life, my mother was always the one nagging me to quit. Her father passed away from lung cancer when I was just a little boy, and she had always hated cigarettes and smoking.

It has now been One year smoke free, and I have absolutely no desire to smoke traditional cigarettes. I am so happy to be free from the burden of cigarettes in my life. Not having to have smoke breaks every hour, and not walking around stinking all day has been a huge plus for me. Feeling more energy and vitality as my body continues to heal itself from years of abuse. Words just can’t describe the appreciation I have for Vap Mods nor how incredibly happy I am that I found them.


We would like to sincerely thank James for offering such a heartfelt story about what vaping means to him. 

Vape on!


Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of Mt Baker Vapor.

  • Carl Ramer says:

    Like James, I smoked for a long time. My love affair with tobacco started at age 10 with a few “snitched” cigarettes from the batch that I had to roll for my mother every week. When the coach in high school sent us out for a one mile cross country run, I stopped half way for a smoke. Finally at around age 31, I decided to quit and take up jogging. Both were successful and that lasted for three years until I was sent to a nuclear warhead site in the military. The stress of knowing that one screwup a quarter mile away could generate a bright flash that would end it all was too great. My choices were alcohol, drugs or back to tobacco. Since the military frowns on drinking on duty and doesn’t like stoned people near nukes, tobacco won. The love affair with tobacco resumed, encompassing pipes, cigars and cigarettes from every country we visited. Finally my wife came down with lung cancer and we were both told by her doctor to get off the smoke. Because she was diagnosed so early, she’s now cured but will be monitored regularly. But the shock of the “C” word led us to asking her oncologist about vaping. His response was that was an excellent idea. So after long lives as smokers, there are two 73 year old vapers dwelling in the midst of what many believe to be a younger person’s hobby. Tell your smoking friends to try vaping for three days and they, too, will be free of the nasty master called tobacco.

    • Kenny Spotz says:


      Thank you for the fascinating story. I can’t imagine the pressure of working with nukes and can completely understand the drive to smoke in that situation. So glad to hear that you and your wife are living free from tobacco with vaping. Many people seem to think this is a young person’s hobby, but there is an amazingly diverse set of people using this new technology to better their life. Vape on!

  • James says:

    I would like too personally Thank Mt Baker Vapes for posting my story! You guys are great and I truly appreciate everything you all do for the vaping community. Keep up the good work and I look forward too seeing more products from you all!

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