Tell me a little bit about how you were first introduced to cannabis therapy:
My sister turned me on to it, I was thirteen years old at a Grateful Dead concert. She’d talked to me about it before. Since then I’ve always been aware of the benefits, effects, etc. of cannabis. When all this medical/legal stuff started to come out, I was on top of it.
In fact, I was one of the first patients at High Mountain Health! I’ve had a card since the program began in AZ.
In what specific ways has cannabis therapy improved your health and wellbeing?
I had a brain aneurysm in 2007, the aneurysm also induced a stroke. The doctors said I had a 3% chance to live. I also have had a bad ankle for most of my life. I got severely injured in a car accident when I was 16.
After my aneurysm, they eventually discovered I also had bone spurs, which explained some of the pain I had been dealing with on a daily basis. I had to undergo bone spur surgery and they gave me perkiest for the pain. For those who don’t know, perkiest makes you feel strange and high. I didn’t like it.
While I was recovering from surgery, I had an accident at home that ultimately put me back in the hospital for surgery. I was on perkiest and hanging a mirror…I lost my balance and fell off a latter. It was awful. At the hospital, we came to find out that I had completely shattered my ankle. With another surgery, they fused all that (my shattered heel and bad ankle) together. Although it helped with the pain, I wanted to get off the perkiest and was able to do so only with the aid of cannabis edibles.
Like the majority of AZMMJ patients, I live with chronic pain and use cannabis to cope.
The altitude and weather effect it too. I don’t smoke during the day because I don’t want anything to impair me while I work. That being said, medicating is something I look forward to at the end of every day. Although I’m never completely pain-free, my version of pain-free is a 2/10.
What would you tell someone who is skeptical about cannabis therapy?
I’d tell them not to have an opinion on something you simply don’t know about. You can’t have an opinion on something unless you’ve tried it.
My advice: get educated. Get as much information about it as possible. Never stop expanding your knowledge.
What are some misconceptions about cannabis that you have encountered in your experience?
I haven’t really encountered misconceptions because I ask lots of questions. This goes back to getting educated about your subject. It’s like putting a Biology professor in front of an English class!
What other ways do you stay happy and healthy?
I do IV vitamin therapy w/ Dr. Gowey. She creates custom vitamin blends depending on what my symptoms are so my body gets what it needs. They give me energy, help keep me from getting sick and helps me maintain a positive psyche to cope with the pain. Cognitive care is one of the most important forms of care you can give yourself.
Remember doctors can’t do it all, we have to work with them to fully help ourselves. With cannabis, I’ve shown doctors how strong I can be.
What is a specific quality that you love about yourself?
Normally I’m a happy person. It’s hard to be happy when you’re in pain. I like to share joy with others help people look and feel good.
Anything else you would like to include about your relationship with cannabis and/or HMH?
Lately, I’ve been waking up crying from my pain, it gets worse in the weather and flares up from other things sometimes too. Thank god for KAYA.
I’ve never been treated rudely at High Mountain Health, I’ve only ever felt kindness and love.
The staff is educated and very kind. They answer all my questions medically and professionally. They are very good at explaining things– they let patients know what options will help treat their condition(s).
Truly I love everyone who works here.
I want to thank each and every one of you for doing what you do every day.