Filipino soldiers are always bombarded with so many stress-inducing activities and often resulted to vicious skagging. By the way, “Skag” is a Filipino soldier’s term for cigarette. If you research this word in any search engine like Google, you will find out that a Skag or Scag is a slang term for heroin or any illegal drugs. Here in the Philippines, it is a popular PMA cadet’s lingo used in the Academy. Eventually, this term was adopted by their fellow Filipino soldiers. Anyway, I’m really clueless how this word originated and used in PMA. Find out sir!
To Skag or not to Skag
When I was a cadet, I learned skagging when I was still a plebe or fouthclassman. I was so curious how it feels like to skag dahil madalas nakikita ko mga upperclassman na mahilig mag skag. Most of the time, I was ordered to produce skags for them. Shabby ba? No sir! When I was tempted to skag, I always remembered what Papang told me about my Lolo Enteng who died young because of lung cancer. To cut the story short, no amount ang sinabi ng tatay ko at natuto ako mag skag. When I finally joined the Philippine Army, it became my addiction. I feel like skag is my way of getting out of stressful situations. I can’t get rid of skagging 24/7. I could consume almost two packs a day especially when I’m in combat operations. However, I also planned to quit but I failed countless times. As usual, I went back to my old bad habit. Then one day, while I was lying in my hammock, I felt a sudden excruciating pain at my upper back. Naisip ko kagad ang sinabi ng erpat ko and I finally decided to quit.
Reasons to Quit
If you still don’t have a child, then you must quit earlier. Smoking can cause impotence. Now, that’s really scary! Masarap mag skag but remember, it will kill you slowly and painfully. If you plan to quit, the earlier, the better! If you want to be around with your grandchildren, then stop it. You’ll have fewer wrinkles and your fingers won’t be stained by nicotine anymore. Look at those brown fingers and imagine how your lungs look like. It’s really terrible. Also, during physical fitness test, you’ll surely improve. Alam kong mahirap huminto mag skag, just think of the positive outcome if you’ll quit. We can’t avoid stress but we can shift to other activities rather than skagging.
Effective Ways to Quit Skagging
First, you should have motivation. In my case, my motivation is my father’s advice. I don’t want to end up like my grandfather. When I felt this pain at my back, I was totally motivated to quit. It’s now or never. Secondly, avoid fellow soldier who skags a lot and always offer you a stick. He can be very generous but the temptation to smoke is high so you must avoid him. Mahirap lang kung buddy mo yung addict sa skag. Good luck sa’yo. Thirdly, spend more time with your fellow soldiers who don’t smoke. Ask them why they are not smoking and hear their stories. It can be inspiring. Fourthly, if there are socials (party) in the unit, avoid drinking too much alcohol. Actually, this is my weakest link. If you’re drunk, then there’s a big probability that you’re going to smoke again. Lastly, take one day at a time and reward yourself for surviving each day.
To sum up everything, we can attain our freedom from skag if we really want to. There’s no such thing as hindi kaya. It’s up to you. Live longer or die young. It’s your choice.