Category Archives: marijuana

Pills vs People

A person in my life has been suffering from depression lately, and it’s so hard to watch. I’ve never really been on the other side of this as much as I’ve been lately. I mean, I recognize that my mother was depressed a lot as I was growing up, but I think she did a pretty good job of hiding it from her kids. I’m usually the one lying unresponsive on the couch, watching life through the TV because I just don’t have the energy to get up and do anything. It’s very strange to be observing this behavior instead of engaging in it, and it’s clarified and strengthened my views on depression, pills, our society, and marijuana.

My friend’s (lets call him Darien) doctors have been prescribing him all sorts of pills. At one point, he was up to 9 a day and taking well over the recommended dosage for most of them. Pills to help him sleep, pills to help him wake up, pills for anxiety, pills to make him sick if he drank, pain pills, etc. Pills. Pills. Pills. Darien was supposed to go to AA to handle some drinking issues associated with all this mess, and his shrink usually couldn’t see him regularly at all. Now I’ve never personally gone to AA, but from the stories I’ve been told, I never will. Cause some of these people have PROBLEMS. Like trading their children for alcohol type of problems. Which is a lot different than just people who tend to drink a lot when they’re unhappy and can’t seem to control it. AA is not group therapy. I would probably come out of it feeling more depressed and needing a drink. Now I’m sorry if this feels like I’m trashing AA; I understand that the program has changed countless lives and really does help people. I’m just saying that it’s not for everyone and it’s not for every drinking/substance abuse problem. And it wasn’t helping Darien. So he was basically sitting alone in his house all day except for a few random doctor’s visits and meetings, popping pills and hoping that it would all get better.

Well here’s a huge shocker: it didn’t. That’s because while pills can be helpful tools sometimes in some cases, they are not a solution to everything, and I wish that our society would realize that fact. In most behaviorial medicine, we don’t even know the full extent of what the meds do! Listen really carefully to that next SSRI commercial on TV; you’ll notice the phrase “<insert medicine here> is believed to <insert pretty picture of synaptic gaps, serotonin, etc>.” My medicine is believed to do something? Like if I believe it will work, it will? I know what they’re really saying: we’ve tested this product out on people like you and we’ve observed these consistent changes. That’s awesome, I’m glad that you’ve recognized some of what these chemicals do to my body. What else are you doing to me that you don’t know about? One of Darien’s medications actually caused him to have more anxiety, and it was such a rare side effect that his doctors at the time didn’t link it to the prescription; they simply tried to treat it with more pills. We’re treating pills with more pills. Seriously?! He got a new doctor, who took him off of about half of what he was taking, and he’s feeling better. Still depressed, but better.

So here’s a little medicine that I’ve witnessed firsthand with Darien. Its side effects are happiness, sleepiness, slight paranoia, and hunger. Oh yeah, you know where I’m going with this. Marijuana. Now he’s only smoked thrice since I’ve known him and all three times have been when he feels like his medicine has failed him and he has to calm his shit down. And you know what? It works. He feels calm immediately afterwards, and he is more productive and motivated the next day. None of his prescription medications do that. Unfortunately, after telling his doctors and the program he was attending that his medicine wasn’t working and not getting any serious response from them, he smoked. He felt better. He was helping himself where they were failing him. And they kicked him out of his program. That’s messed up. I mean, I can see things from their perspective too. It was a substance abuse program, and the participants are supposed to stay clean. But it’s not like he’s a regular user or even abuser of pot, and he kept pestering them about how bad he still felt and they did nothing.

Ok, so even though I think that marijuana is far better than pills for anxiety and depression, I think there’s an even better cure: people. One of the worst things about depression is feeling alone. Darien is alone in the house all day, every day, watching TV. Days begin to blend together, all motivation is lost, and time begins to mean absolutely nothing because it just keeps dragging on. Circumstances like that would drive a completely stable person a little crazy, so what effect do you think it has on a person who’s already a little off his rocker? We are mainly social creatures that need to interact with other people. Even introverts need company sometimes. I fully believe that companions or life coaches are one of the best ways to combat depression. In my mind, they’d be sort of like the companions that old people have sometimes. You know, they help them take their meds, buy groceries, get to doctor’s appointments, etc. But depression companions would help the depressed person work towards their goals and keep them motivated. When Darien’s sister was in town, he was the most active I’d seen him in months. He was sleeping on a more regular schedule, getting up and staying up most of the day, and helping around the house. It’s because he had to entertain his sister and do things with her. A companion would serve the same function. They’d make sure that a good combination of diet, exercise, and activity worked to help the person get their life back on track. I realize that this is probably impossible for most people because it would cost a lot more than even prescription meds (which are already ridiculously expensive), but I still think that it would work the best. Ultimately, it’s going to come down to him wanting to get better and finding the motivation to help himself.

I just really wish that our society viewed depression differently. Doctors overdiagnose people with it all the time and throw pills at them that they don’t need. What people need is to not feel alone with all of their problems in this chaotic and unstable world that we’re in. This is one of the downfalls of being a competitive, dog-eat-dog, capitalist society.

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And I’m stronger because of it…

So July 13th is a pretty important day in my life. Not that I really want it to be and not anything that deserves a celebration. Not that kind of important. Important as in the start of hitting rock bottom. One of the major turning points in my life.

Before July 13, 2007 I was a mess. I was deeply depressed, doing poorly in school, cutting myself off from friends, hardly ever leaving my room, sleeping too much, having one night stands, getting high, and getting fat. I’d made a lot of bad choices, and they were catching up with me. But in the spring and summer of 2007, I had started to pick myself up and dust myself off. I wasn’t doing spectacular or anything, but I was doing better. I spent the summer at home, living with my mother and hanging out with my girlfriends. I hadn’t slept with anyone in six months, and I was very proud of that because I really wanted to end my trend of one night stands. I didn’t want to do it anymore because it only made me more unhappy. I was making better choices. If only I had known.

Going out to the hookah bar with your gal pals seems totally harmless right? And then running into an old guy friend you’d known elementary school through high school is also harmless right? Having him join us, smoke and drink with us, catching up on old times. And then he invited us back to his place for a few more drinks.  … If only I’d never gone. If only WE’D never gone. Because if he hadn’t done it to me, maybe it would’ve been one of my friends. And I hate that thought even more than what he did to me. On July 13th, 2007 I was raped by someone that I thought was a friend. In the week following that, I believe I hit rock bottom. Imagine not being able to shower or change clothes without dissolving into tears because being naked seems so painful and venerable. I cried constantly and refused to leave my mother’s house.

Eventually, slowly, I began to heal. My short creative non-fiction story “Second hand” talks about this healing process and the friend that helped me through it. A lot of people helped me through it actually. And writing that piece especially helped me through it.

On July 13, 2008 I tried to plan the most super fun day that I could think of to keep my mind off of what had happened only a year ago. It backfired. The day didn’t live up to my expectations, my friends all cancelled, and I ended up crying in my room most of the day. July 13th, 2009, I was at a summer publishing program with no one that I knew (in fact it was only the third or fourth day of the program). And you don’t wanna start off something like that by going “Hey! Guess what terrible thing happened to me!” So I sat quietly in class, ate lunch alone, and generally avoided people all day. There were definitely some tears that night as I watched the Denver stars, sipping on boxed wine and bottling all my feelings up. edit:hahaha I always forget about Denver for some reason… 2009 is updated/correct now. I probably had a harder time remembering this cause it was sort of my routine behavior in Denver. I know, I’m such an emo when I wanna be.

But July 13, 2010, I went to work, I worked out, I had dinner with my roommate, and I ate cake. I had no expectations for the day. I just wanted to be normal. And for the most part, it was and I was. Beth and I had a long talk that evening about the past and how every single tiny little choice affects us. What if we had gotten a table inside the hookah bar and not out on the patio? Would we have run into that bastard then? Would fate have found another way to put him on my path? Or would that just mean that it would happen to someone else and not to me? Every choice has a great impact on our lives whether we realize it or not.

It has taken me three years, but I’m finally able to say that I wouldn’t change it. It was the most horrible thing that’s ever happened to me in my entire life. But it made me who I am today. And the person that I am today is so much stronger, understanding, selfless, and more compassionate than who I was before. Rock bottom didn’t erase all of my character flaws–I’m certainly not perfect, although there was a time that I’d tell lie after lie to make you think so–but it did smooth out a lot of my rough edges. It’s like Tyler Durden said: “It’s only after you’ve lost everything that you’re free to do anything.” And it’s so true.

I was going to post this reflection on the third anniversary, but I was doing other things and trying to be normal. But I’m doing it now. Because I need to. Because I’m better. Because I’m stronger. And because I took myself out on a solo date–something I’ve never had the guts to do before. Yep, two weekends ago, right before my black anniversary, I took just me onesie out to a movie. Completely alone. And I wasn’t self conscious, and I actually had a good time. Yes, I saw Eclipse and bought a 12 pack of beer because I’m one classy broad like that 😉

Happy anniversary. I’m so proud of you

Second-hand

 

You sat there in your car and the rain softly tinkled on the windshield as you just looked at me. There was sadness in your eyes, but not the kind that somehow holds an indirect judgment, just a sadness that expressed your understanding that this was yet another painful battle scar in my long history of war and grief. I lit a cigarette, nervous about how you’d react, wondering if I should have even told you. I exhaled and watched the smoke disperse along the contours of the windshield, giving you time. But when you spoke, your words shocked me.

“I already knew. I guessed.”

I averted my eyes from yours and took another drag so that I wouldn’t have to fill the silence. You already knew. Were the changes that obvious? Did I really physically flinch every single time someone said it in jest during a conversation? I thought that I only flinched in my head. On bad days though I know I’ve snapped out the line, “Don’t joke about that.” You already knew. I let out the breath and the smoke that I didn’t even realize I was holding before turning back to you. You slowly reached for my hand, and I passed you the cigarette, knowing that’s what you wanted, and for a brief instant our rings mirrored each other. Yours said “Dream” and mine said “Live,” and when you gave it to me as a birthday present, you specifically gave me “Live” to remind me that no matter how hard things get, you wanted me to live. We shared everything: cigarettes, rings, clothes, secrets, dreams, coffee, everything. Of course I had to share this with you. You were the only person who had any chance of understanding.

I met you our freshman year because we both hung out with the same upperclassmen, and we were their pet freshman; they nicknamed us “TwinBots.” That was back when your hair was still long and I didn’t dye mine black. Spring revealed that we had a crush on the same guy, and you started dating him. I distanced myself from you; you didn’t need me. I let a boy come between us. I watched the angry tears slide down your face as you tried to get some sort of emotion out of me, some sort of explanation as to why I felt no remorse for kissing your boyfriend. I tried my hardest to make myself a stone, not to flinch, not to care, because caring hurt, and I was hurt. You didn’t hate me for the kiss. You hated me because of what I said to you.

“I don’t care.”

My right cheek stung worse than it ever had as I staggered backward and put my hand over the red imprint of your own. I didn’t speak to you for a year. I hated you, you hated me.

But somehow, maybe seeing the worst side of a person allows you to fully accept her. I apologized, you apologized. But we thought that our trust couldn’t ever be healed to what it was before. We weren’t TwinBots anymore. We were different. You had no idea how different though.

When we started to hang out again, you knew something had changed. I was quieter, more studious, less social. Somehow you knew that the girl who you’d known as selfish and self-sufficient was no longer taking care of herself. I slept maybe three hours a night tops. I barely ate. I’d lost fifteen pounds in two months. You always knew exactly where to find me in the library, with a sandwich in one hand and a huge thermos of coffee perfect for sharing in the other. You began to take care of me while I remained closed and distant from pretty much everyone. What encouraged this behavior is still beyond me. You tried to bring me out of my awkward new shell. When I realized how much I needed you, I couldn’t bear the thought of telling you what had happened. You’d already seen me at my worst once. I didn’t want you to see me at my weakest as well. But somehow, you already knew. And now you’re beginning to understand.

I argue with myself about this every time I tell you something more. This isn’t your burden to bear, it’s mine. Should I be telling you? Why should you have to think about it everyday like I do? What is this doing to you? Everyone realizes that it’s traumatic for me, the victim, but what few people think about is how it affects you, my friend. There are others who understand what you’re going through—people like you, who have a friend like me. Even I don’t understand how all of it affects you. But as you observe me, notice how I react, learn what triggers the flashbacks, and experience the best ways to calm me afterwards, you begin to grasp what it has done to me and what it’s still doing to me. And as I realize that every day you get better at soothing me, knowing how to protect me, learning more details, I begin to see what it’s done to you too.

I think of it as a scab. It was a wound. Poisonous. But I’ve worked hard to heal it and turn it into a tough, impervious scab. I pick at it, hurting myself on my own terms. I make it bleed just a little bit, enough to deal with and bear, and then I let it scab up again. Hopefully, all the picking will create a thick layer of scar tissue. I mostly pick at it by myself, feeling safer by myself than with another person.

Whenever I’ve told people, the first reaction to cross their faces is horror, then the sympathetic look, and the hug. They think it helps. But in all honesty, I hate that look more than anything else. It makes me feel weak, like they think I’m a victim, someone fragile and delicate, about to break at any moment. I’m done being weak. I’m done being sad and hurt and broken. I am angry. And I want them to be angry too, but they don’t know that. They just look at me like I’m suddenly a different person, and they think that a hug will help. I can’t blame them, because they don’t understand. They’ll never really understand either, because I don’t tell them all the details. I can’t tell the details, can’t give them all the information they want. It hurts too much. I can’t relive in words what I have to relive everyday in my head. I don’t want them to see me pick at it. But sometimes I do it around you.

The first time was when I actually had to tell you, sit in your car as the light rain fell, and wait for your reaction. But you already knew, somehow. I should have known. You’re my best friend, you know me better than any other person. Of course you already knew. But you were only aware of the occurrence. You still had no idea of the effect.

I’m not quite the same person anymore, and things that never used to bother me do now. I don’t usually volunteer details very often, but I know that I have to explain my behavior to you sometimes. Like when you were tickling me and I couldn’t breathe and begged you to stop and then started crying when you didn’t. I couldn’t breathe and you kept laughing and tickling. We were stoned out of our minds and pretending that we were little girls at a slumber party complete with movies, pillow fights, and tickling. But you didn’t stop and something in my head clicked on and suddenly the panic was keeping me from breathing instead of the laughter. I think I pushed you. I don’t remember. I just remember curling in on myself and crying, and then looking up at you. Your eyes looked as if I’d slapped you—hurt because you knew that somehow you’d unintentionally hurt me. I explained a little more, picked at my scab just enough for you to see the poison lurking beneath the surface. “But I’m your best friend. You know I’d never hurt you. Doesn’t that matter?”

I felt so guilty for making you feel like I didn’t trust you. But the truth is that it doesn’t matter. After panic sets in, rational thought completely disappears. You’re no longer my best friend tickling me in good nature; you’re a person that didn’t stop when I told you to. I’d told you bits and pieces before, making very small picks around the edges, but this was the first time you’d seen blood. That’s because it wasn’t just me telling you, you’d seen it too. You’d seen the tears and how I immediately curled into the tightest ball possible, trying to close in on myself and disappear. I deal with it slowly, in tiny pieces, releasing the poison little by little until one day, it will hopefully leave my system forever and I’ll have a clean, fresh, pink scar instead of this crusted, infected scab. But when other people pick at it, they don’t gently chip away at the edges like I do. They usually rip away a sizable chunk. And that’s when I completely lose it.

We went to our usual Friday night party together, but this night was different because every single person there was completely out of weed. Except for me. Taking advantage of the monopoly that I was suddenly in control of, I made it into a game. If people wanted to smoke my weed, they had to flirt with me. I got the best compliments and kisses, dances and lame pick-up lines. I was in heaven. I sat down in my designated green chair to pack yet another bowl to keep my confidence flying high, when he sauntered up to me and sat on my lap. I remember feeling uncomfortable for the first time that evening.

“Hey baby, you know I’m gonna get the green hit off that bowl, right?” He was far too close to me. “Cause you know, all these other fools ain’t got nothin’ on me. I’ll give you the best time you ever had.” He leaned in closer.

He was just joking with me, of course; that’s how it usually happens. Comedy turns into tragedy. He didn’t know the memories that he was digging up by trapping my body under his, leaning very close to me, trying to intimidate me. I’d known him and partied with him every Friday night for the past two semesters; I knew he would never hurt me, but that didn’t stop my fear from starting. He was only rising to the challenge, completely unaware of my rising level of panic. I tried to laugh it off, because if I didn’t think about it, didn’t make the connection, maybe I could fight it off. I was so much stronger than I used to be, I had healed so much. I was stronger than this. I looked at you and saw you watching me very carefully as well, measuring my reactions to determine my mental state. I told him that he’d proven his point and to please get the fuck off me. But the joke wasn’t over yet, he still felt he had something to prove, and he leaned in to brush his lips against my ear while cupping the back of my neck with his hand, stopping any chance I had of dodging him.

R.I.P.

My heart instantly tried to hammer its way out of my chest to punch him off me as a flood of memories broke free of their carefully constructed confinements, drowning my reason and rationality. I was trapped. I couldn’t move. He was too close. I still tried to fight it, tried to lock the memories back where they belonged, tried to block the panic, but I wasn’t strong enough. Never strong enough. The poison won, and then he was shoving my face into a pillow to muffle my sobs, whispering things like, “Yeah baby, moan for me.” His hand was rough against the back of my neck, scruffing me like an animal, forcing me to stay still, convincing himself that my constant crying meant that I liked it. My struggling made him think that I wanted to play rough, so he gave it to me rough. He scratched all down my back, dragging his dirty fingernails over my flesh while constantly babbling, “Yeah, you like that.” I had given up. I didn’t fight. I had said no. Multiple times. It hadn’t mattered. So I gave up, sobbing and wishing that it would be over soon.

It all returned to me in less than half of one of my frantic heartbeats and I looked at you immediately. That moment is like a picture burned into my memory. When I looked at you, the present came back immediately, emphasizing the fact that the past few seconds of my life had not been at the party. You were standing there in your blue dress with the black belt buckled fashionably around your waist. People were moving and dancing in the background, but you were absolutely still, watching me, and I saw myself and my panic reflected in your eyes, mirrored like the matching rings on our left hands.

I have no idea what you saw in my eyes when you looked back at me. Pain? Terror? My silent scream for you to save me? Doesn’t matter what you saw there because you already knew. And with more force than I knew you had, more speed than I thought you were capable of, you freed me, pulled him off of me, allowed me to escape and break down where not so many eyes could find me.

I fled from the living room, up the stairs, and into the first doorway I encountered. You found me in the upstairs bathroom with the noise of the party below and only my panicked breathing echoing in the pitch black bathroom as I pressed myself as close to the cold tiled wall to the immediate right of the door as I could, only vaguely aware that the sharp object digging into my back was the light switch. You came in just as the sobs started and I slowly slipped down the tile and pooled onto the floor. You didn’t say anything. You didn’t touch me. You just let me cry it out until my senses returned and locked the memories back in their cage where they belonged. And then you were ready for me as I flung myself into your arms, needing the hug that you’d desperately wanted to give me this entire time, crying and apologizing for my flashback. You wiped my tears away, fixed my make-up, and gave me an alibi. Few people had even noticed my rapid escape, so none of it really mattered anyway.

But it did matter to me. You couldn’t save, weren’t there to save, me from him. But you could and did, frequently, save me from myself.

I guess it must be hard for you to be my friend now. Being my friend used to mean that we shared cigarettes, rings, clothes, secrets, dreams, coffee, everything. Unfortunately for you, I guess that being my best friend now means we really do share everything. Being my friend now means you’ve witnessed a flashback, watched the panic seize and take hold of my brain, locking out all logical thought and reason, ripping me from the present, forcing the past on me again and again. Being my friend now means knowing what to do for me when I can’t do anything for myself, knowing that you must watch in silence, knowing you can’t touch me because you already know how that only makes the panic worse, knowing that you can’t do anything but wait it out until it runs its course so that you can be there as soon as I regain control of my own thoughts and actions.

We used to be so similar that people called us TwinBots. But we fell apart and were somehow strong enough to patch ourselves together again. My ring reminds me every day to live. You have helped me do that day by day. Your ring reminds you to dream. Because you have to do that for both of us now. When we sit in your room and smoke while doing homework, my eye is always drawn to the James Dean poster. “Dream as if you’ll live forever. Live as if you’ll die today.”  So I live, and you dream, and we both smoke. I often wonder how our freshman selves would react if they could see us now, slowly killing ourselves while still trying to make each day count. Being my friend then was about grand adventures and our shared belief that life was just beginning with so much to look forward to. Being my friend now means that you‘ve had to experience my second-hand trauma. They say that second-hand smoke can kill.

You’ve told me before that you think about what you’d do to him if you ever got the chance. You’ve smoked cigarettes on your roof, imagined sitting on him and putting out each smoldering stick of cancer on his chest until a large R burned angry and red in his flesh. I have to live with it every single day. I remember it every single day. I bear the scab as proof and someday I’ll bear the scar. Just another scar next to several others. All lined up nice and neat and dealt with for one hour every week. I bear the badge of the victim whether I want to or not. You want to brand his crime into his chest to remind him of it every single day of his life, so that he can never forget the violence he inflicted upon another human being. A human being he had been friends with since second grade, had dated in middle school.

Sometimes I smoked those angry cigarettes with you, enjoying the feel of the smoke burn through my lungs, so close to my heart, and I was happy that someone else understood.  That someone else felt angry with me instead of feeling sorry for me. That someone else understood why I didn’t report it for the past’s sake, but realized my burning desire for closure, for pain, for revenge. So even though I still don’t know if it’s right to let you help me carry this burden, I chain-smoke those angry cigarettes with you and let my anger loose. But I still worry about you.

Second-hand smoke can kill.

What does second-hand rape do to you?

Reefer Madness!!!

Mary Jane, Oh Mary Jane

When it comes to marijuana, it’s only okay to joke about it. But tell someone you used to hit the reefer in college, and WOAH! Suddenly you’re a hoodlum that fuels the drug cartels and gang violence. Well I’m here as a past user and connoisseur to stick up for this leafy little plant.

I’ll start my case off by stating that, yes, I am a PAST user. I’ve come to realize that you can get in a LOT more trouble for it after college, and it’s just not worth jeopardizing my career and future for a few hits now and again. So I’m sticking to my logic and not using again until this herb is legal. And yes, I would be using it medically and not for recreational purposes.

I have suffered from depression since childhood and have been on anti-depressants since I was fourteen. And every few years, my doctors and shrinks would have to mess with which brand I was taking or up the dosage because the drugs kept losing their effect. I would have at least one depression cycle a year. And when I say depression cycle, I don’t mean that I was sad for a few days a year. I mean that it would screw with my entire life, usually through my sleep cycle. Sometimes I’d have severe insomnia which was the case my freshman year of college when I watched PBS specials all night long in an attempt to fall asleep [and I now know SO many stupid random facts on soooo many topics because of it]. Other times, I’d sleep up to 18 hours a day like sophomore year when I nearly failed a few classes just because I missed so many of them. My depression is debilitating, and you can’t imagine what it’s like unless you’ve experienced it. It dips below the point of suicide to where I don’t even want to commit suicide because that takes effort and I’d probably just screw it up anyway. I’m the huge germ-a-phoebe and I spent three hours lying on the FLOOR OF MY DORM’S BATHROOM because I just didn’t see the point of getting up. I was content to lay there until I died. Therapy, anti-depressants, and light-box therapy could never control the extremes of my depression and mostly turned the world gray without any highs [pardon the pun] to balance out the lows that I was still experiencing.

So now that we’ve covered that I do indeed suffer from depression, I shall make my next statement. In the three years that I used cannabis, I’ve had no depression cycles. I’ve experienced my bad days or my bad weeks like any other person, but I haven’t had a problem with my weight or my sleep cycles which are the two biggest measurable indicators of my depression. That has been a blessing that I cannot even begin to describe. I believe that the cannabis is the reason.

But enough about me personally. Let’s get down to some business. [None of this was actually researched during the time that this post was created. These are all facts and knowledge that I’ve gained over three years of regular use. If I wanted to write a scholarly paper or submit to a medical journal, I’d do research and cite sources, but this is just a blog meant to bring a little enlightenment to those who don’t know much on the subject. I deeply apologize if something is a tad bit off. ] Cannabis was first made illegal in the early 17th century in Jamestown Colony, VA. Why? Because hemp was a competitor with the South’s booming cotton industry. And cannabis is one of those miraculous plants that can grow just about anywhere, including the north. In an attempt to rid cotton of its competition, Southern politicians slapped a Hispanic name on it and used propaganda to spread the word that marijuana was used by blacks and Mexicans and caused insanity, criminality, and death. I love F.D.R, but he’s the one that first crafted a national law making cannabis possession illegal via an unpayable tax on the drug. And the propaganda has stuck all these years. Well it’s time to break that!

Cannabis is much less harmful to the body than the legal vices, alcohol and tobacco, are. It is also impossible to overdose on cannabis. PHYSICALLY IMPOSSIBLE. And it’s not physically addictive. Mentally addictive, maybe, but that also depends on the type of person using cannabis. Cannabis is less harmful than alcohol or tobacco is mainly because it doesn’t poison the body and it’s not altered in any way. You pick the buds off the plant, let them dry a bit, and smoke them. No fermenting, no adding rat poison and god only knows what else. It’s pure as God intended it to be. Now I’m not particularly religious [although I am spiritual, but I’ll probably talk about that in another post], but I do believe that cannabis has religious value. It brings the mind to a calm place that’s divine for yoga and meditation. One of my former roommates loved doing Bible study and worshiping while stoned. Despite popular belief, you can get things done while baked. I find logic problems and crosswords to be extremely amusing while enjoying the pleasures of reefer. It takes me a little longer to do, but the answers are still correct when I check them sober. Many of the stereotypes of stoners are actually false, while some remain very VERY true.

False stereotypes:

Stoners are lazy. SO FALSE. Yes, it’s easy to get sucked in to the TV because you’re not as good at multi-tasking when you’re high, but once you set your mind to doing a task, it gets done. Finding the motivation can be tricky, but that’s any college kid. I loved taking walks or bike rides while baked. It feels nice to use your body and appreciate clean air when you’re in a euphoric state.

Stoners don’t get anything done or don’t amount to anything in life. So many musicians and comedians are baked most of the time, and they have crazy busy schedules. I stayed on the dean’s list at an academically challenging school while smoking at least once a day. In fact, about 75% of my university smoked regularly. Some failed out, but they were going to fail whether or not they smoked reefer. Michael Phelps smokes weed, and he’s got how many Olympic gold medals?? And I can almost guarantee that Shaun White lights up. I mean, COME ON! He’s a snowboarder. And isn’t his super secret snowboarder camp in Colorado? [This is just conjecture at this point. Don’t quote me here; I’m trying to be light-hearted and humorous.] They have the BEST bud there. Oh, and in Canada too. Primo weed in the north.

Stoners are stupid or “Duuuuude, where’s my car???” The weed doesn’t make you dumb. It just happens that a lot of dumb people smoke it. A lot of dumb people drink too, and they just get dumber with alcohol. Try talking to a 4.0 Poli-Sci or Philosophy major who tokes. I promise you that they can STILL  kick your ass in logic, even while baked. Moderation also helps. There is a point when everyone just starts to giggle, but that usually takes a lot unless you’ve got some REALLY primo bud.

True Stereotypes:

Stoners say dude a lot. Dude… it’s true. There’s just something about the way it rolls off the tongue. Groovy is a most excellent choice as well.

Stoners get the munchies. You have no idea how good your favorite food really is until you’ve enjoyed it while high. I can’t even describe what’s different, but it is. OOOOooooOOOooh yes it is. Food is glorious.

The facts boil down to this. Marijuana consumption makes you hungry, sleepy, and happy. What is wrong with any of those things???? These are basic survival needs!!! Cannabis calms nausea, alleviates pain, and floods the brain with dopamine. These are all reasons why it’s prescribed to cancer patients. It balances out the side-effects of radiation. It’s not a cure for cancer, but it makes the cures we have a lot more manageable.  Cannabis is also a great cure for menstrual pains. It also makes sexual climax easier for a women while making it harder [no pun intended] for a man, allowing a women to have multiple orgasms before her partner climaxes. This last statement has been thoroughly tested and approved by this blogger.

Here’s what you can get medical marijuana for:

  1. glaucoma
  2. AIDS wasting
  3. neuropathic pain
  4. multiple sclerosis
  5. chemotherapy-induced nausea
  6. movement disorders
  7. asthma
  8. allergies
  9. inflammation
  10. epilepsy
  11. depression
  12. bipolar disorders
  13. anxiety disorders
  14. dependency and withdrawal symptoms
  15. symptoms of anorexia and agitation in Alzheimer’s patients

So there you have it. It hurts the body less than tobacco and alcohol. It heals the body and mind in so many ways. It was initially made illegal because it was a competition to cotton. It’s unaltered.

IT’S JUST A PLANT.

So come on United States government. Cut your people a break and legalize cannabis already. I’d really not like to suffer from depression again. But I will because I wish to be a law-abiding citizen. I’ll still fight for it to be made legal though because I truly feel that the benefits outweigh the dangers of this delightful little plant. For more details watch “Totally Baked: A Pot-U-Mentary.”

[And on a side note, I plan to pick a wedding dress made of a hemp and silk blend weave. Isn’t it pretty?!?!]