Good for you! When I was first was diagnosed I smoked also for many years. I quit when I was hospitalized for about a year and half. It felt like I was never going to get over that flare. One around last January I started to smoke one here and there (don't try this) and I noticed my bowels were better and I actually started to feel better. Well in my eyes this can't be bad. Well it is almost a year since I went back and I am sorry I did. I still at times have bad days, fatigue and I still get diarrhea and stomach pains and nausea but no where near like I did. I want to try and quit again but am scared. I am trying to talk myself into it again for January. I did tell my GI doc and he did say "When I quit again I will flare". Great. Interesting he said when. It seems to be a trend with UC'ers.
I certainly wouldn't suggest going back. I commend you. Keep up the good work.