Last week I renewed my medical marijuana card. It got me thinking about how much my life has improved since first receiving my card in the mail last March. Sure, in some places, (and with some people), there is still a stigma. We millennials all remember D.A.R.E, where we were told that if we smoked pot it would lead us directly to shooting up behind a dumpster. What utter bullshit.
The sad part about it is that cannabis helps people, tremendously. It was never the “gateway drug” that we were told it was. It treats more ailments than any synthetic drug ever produced and it treats without causing additional ailments, (unlike most pharmaceuticals).
How It Was Going Before Medical Cannabis:
Flashback to somewhere between 2017-2018: I had been prescribed a high dose of Xanax for my generalized anxiety disorder, panic attacks, and severe insomnia. I was also taking something comparable to Buspar, (although I cannot recall the name). To get to that point, I had been given a ton of different drugs – Ativan, Klonopin, and even Saroquel for sleep, (a drug that I absolutely did NOT need.)
To say that I was a living corpse would be an understatement. I was emotionless, depressed, and tired even on a full night’s sleep. It was seriously no way to live. So, I stopped taking everything and decided I would find another way to deal with it.
Disclaimer: I would NEVER recommend that anybody stop taking medication on their own without the supervision of a doctor.
Now, I’m not going to lie and say that I’d never tried marijuana before. I had, probably more than most. But, what I was having versus what the medical marijuana industry can provide are two very different things.
A Whole New World
I was able to provide my medical records to Veriheal in Pennsylvania and after a quick Zoom call, my card was on its way! It arrived pretty quickly and I was eager to check the menu at the dispensary near me to view my options. I was blown away. Everything I thought I knew about cannabis was promptly flipped on its head and tossed around. I knew that one of the experts at the dispensary was going to speak with me on my first visit and I was happy because strangely, I did have a lot of questions.
The woman who I spoke with was super informative and introduced me to a lot of new terms: Terpenes, THCA, CBDA, THCV. All I’d known about, (and it turns out I didn’t know as much as I thought I did) was the difference between Indica strains and Sativa strains. But, all of these elements play a role when it comes to how you’re going to feel.
There were also more ways to enjoy cannabis than I knew. Instead of dry leaf and vapes being the only way, there are also tinctures, edibles, topicals, and concentrates. I was overwhelmed, in a good way for once.
So, I’ve been trying new strains, writing down percentages, and figuring out what works for me at what time of the day for particular ailments. And, it changed my daily life for the better.
6 Ways that Medical Cannabis Transformed My Daily Life
1. I Can Actually Relax & Go to Sleep
Insomnia is awful and if you have it, you know how much it can make day-to-day life miserable. A lack of sleep, or sleep deprivation equates to a lack of focus AKA brain fog, weakened immunity, higher blood pressure, increased risk of diabetes, weight gain, increased risk of heart disease, and low sex drive. All of that not only sucks but it can be dangerous as well as you’re much more likely to have an accident when you aren’t getting enough sleep, particularly while driving.
With medical marijuana, I can finally relax and actually get real sleep. What I mean by real sleep is that I can fall asleep more quickly and actually remain asleep throughout the night. I’ve found that dry leaf via vape works best for me but many people love tinctures and edibles to unwind before bed.
I would also like to point out that I read before bed and the cannabis does not inhibit my ability to read/enjoy and remember what I’m reading.
Real, restful sleep is a complete game-changer.
2. I’m More Productive
I think this is yet another stigma that surrounds cannabis. There is this idea of “potheads” who are couch-bound and never get anything done. While you can certainly have enough of certain Indica strains to put you on your ass and keep you there, with the right amount, it increases productivity in many people! (Sativa strains work best for me).
Check out this really cool article in Fortune about how marijuana actually does boost productivity!
3. I’ve Experienced a HUGE Reduction in Anxiety
Anxiety can be all-controlling. It can limit what you do in your daily life. I’m one of the most anxious people I know. I overthink, I experience panic attacks, hyperventilation – the works. Medical marijuana is the only thing that has ever helped my anxiety without causing a bunch of bad side effects. Point blank.
When I’m overthinking, I have some weed and my mind stops its endless torture about an upcoming decision. I can focus on the task at hand because the MJ stopped those awful intrusive thoughts.
Before I go grocery shopping, (a strange place to become anxious and overwhelmed but it always used to happen to me), I have some cannabis and it’s not so bad. I don’t even become bothered by the inflated prices or idiots who stand directly in the middle of the isles. I’m calm.
If I have to go to an event I really don’t want to attend – I have some weed and I’m present, un-annoyed, and relaxed.
If you struggle with anxiety and you haven’t thought about medical marijuana – consider it. It will change your life.
4. I’m Happier
Because I’m getting sleep, being more productive, and am experiencing less anxiety – I’m happier! I’m also a hell of a lot less irritable than I was before, (with and without other medication). Instead of panicking in a situation, I am able to calmly look at it and come up with a solution without being drowned in anxiety.
There really isn’t a price you can put on happiness so if medical marijuana did nothing but make me happier, that’s still an enormous win.
6. I Feel More Creative More Often
It’s probably not shocking but a lot of medications, particularly those that treat anxiety disorders, can take away that…spark. For me, that was creativity. I thought it was gone forever, even after I stopped taking the medications. It did take some time and a couple of creative exercises, but the creativity did seem to come back, in droves.
On a weekly basis, I am feeling more creative more frequently than ever before and I attribute that to medical marijuana and all the benefits it has. Happier = more creative.
Could Medical Marijuana Help You Too?
Again, I’m no doctor and everything I’ve stated in this article is from my personal experience. However, if you have found that you’re tired of medication that makes you a zombie and want to take a look at other options, medical marijuana is one you should dig deeper into. It may work for you in all the incredible ways it is working for me.
If you do use medical marijuana, are there other benefits that you experience from it? Let me know in the comments!