The biggest thing that still affects me today (almost 5 years since my last cigarette) is my dreams about smoking. My experience during those dreams are exactly the same.
I smoke, and then:
1. I think about how I have to reset my counter to day 0 (I keep track of how many days it’s been since my last cigarette). I feel a great sense of loss like I’ve completely wasted all the effort I put into quitting.
2. I panic because I have no idea how to explain this to myself or to the people who have supported me all this while.
3. I feel guilty. I feel like I’ve betrayed myself and the people around me.
4. I wake up, the feelings linger for up to a few hours. I have to constantly remind myself that I didn’t actually smoke, and that I have nothing to worry about, then I eventually snap out of it.
The frequency of these dreams have gone from 5 times a week (in the first month or so) to once every couple of months (now) but the emotions I experience are still as strong.