Real Stories of Relief

Do you have a Real Story of Relief through the use of cannabis?  Send it to contactus [at] inharmonywellness [dot] org and we will anonymously post it here…

Listen to what our patients have to say:

Hey guys! Thought I’d share:

I haven’t always used cannabis. Actually, growing up, I despised the
plant. I was taught that it was a bad thing, that it kills brain cells,
that smoking one joint is the equivalent to an entire pack of cigarettes
worth of lung damage. I was taught this, and I accepted it. As a kid, if
you question or argue, you are disobedient, so we rarely questioned
anything; Perfect for the educators. This mindset of mine continued
throughout my teens and into my twenties. I never touched a “drug”
in my life until I finally started learning about Medicinal Cannabis
instead of blindly avoiding Marijuana.

What changed my point of view? Well, there are a few variables,
but I can really narrow it down to one thing
that really altered my perception of Cannabis. A billboard on Sante Fe
drive that read, “Marijuana: It’s like alcohol, but without the
violence or hangover.” This was advertising promoting Amendment 44 in
Denver Colorado, aiming to make Cannabis legal for adults, as long as
you posses under one ounce. Now this billboard didn’t make me go buy
some weed and spark up a big bowl, but it did finally make me take a
step back, and re-think a few things. Maybe cannabis isn’t what they
have told me it was. This was about 2006, and it still took a few years
before I started using cannabis, but this is when my curious research
started.

Fast forward to 2008.  As I’m working hard at my new design job
building trade show booths, a wild 300lb piece of wall got away from me
and landed square on my foot, crushing 3 metatarsals. Ouch. This was the
first time in my life I have ever broken a bone. Numerous bicycle
crashes, skiing accidents, soccer injuries, but never a broken bone.
This injury was a little disheartening to me. I just got back into
running and my times were improving as well as being an avid cyclist,
where I rode most days. Luckily for me, all I really needed was a cast
and some time to heal.

My Doctor, knowing what an active person I was, decided to make a recommendation. He noted the pain that not only
the healing will bring, but also the physical therapy after. He also
knew that I am not a fan of opiate pain killers, or any prescription
pain killers at that. He handed me a little stack of paper work for
registration for a Medical Marijuana card. We talked about it, and he
answered all my questions, and stamped out the misinformation that has
been force fed to me my entire life. I got registered, and started on my
path to recovery.

Cannabis helped more than anything I could have ever imagined, and my
foot was just the tip of the iceberg.  Yes it definitely helped with
pain management of my broken bones. It also helped deal with the 6 weeks
of down time as well. I do not typically divulge this about myself, but
I have suffered from depression and severe anxiety my entire life. I
also have a bit of a short fuse, which I have been known for. Not
exactly what I like my reputation to reflect.  6 weeks on a couch for
someone that typically has a steady flow of endorphins from exercise can
be pretty damaging, mentally. This is where cannabis really, positively
changed my life.

What I noticed was when I used cannabis more regularly to manage pain,
other things started changing as well. I was no longer as anxious. It
felt nice. I could actually relax and focus on work. Not only that, but
I was much more patient, calm, and collected.  To be clear, I am not
speaking about when I was actually under the influence of cannabis, but
when I was sober and working. Cannabis has helped me in so many ways
that I never thought a plant that is supposed to be so evil could. I now
use cannabis every day, and I can truly say, I am a happy person,
getting happier every day, and all without prescription mood
enhancers/anti-depressants.

If I can credit a specific attribute of cannabis, it is that it helps
the user take a step back from any situation. At least, this is what it
has done for me. I take the time to see both sides to make better
decisions in my life; not only in my personal life, but work life as
well. I feel I’m actually on a path of positivity, rather than a path
of angst and resentment that I was falling into. Cannabis has helped me
grow into a whole person, and has even helped me become more open to the
world. It baffles me to this day why we are taught that such a positive,
life changing plant is classified in the same realms of methamphetamine.
The help this plant provides is not a secret and the information from
studies are pouring in more and more every day. Hopefully they will set
Cannabis free in the very near future so others can experience the
wonderful effects without fear of prosecution.
TL – Colorado

Arthritis and Inflammation

My grandmother loved Jazz.  Listening, playing and being a part of the Jazz culture was her joy.  Sadly as she aged the ravages of time took their toll, and with debilitating arthritis, scoliosis and severe pain it became more difficult for her to enjoy.  Her “Arthur” as she called it transformed her once elegant and nimble hands into claws; her knuckles swollen like mushrooms, could barely tap along with the beat, let alone glide across the piano keys as they once had.  Her condition made it easier to stay at home and limited our adventures to our once a month “dates,” where I would pick her up and take her to the big hotel downtown for a jazz concert.  One fateful day as we were driving to the concert, my grandmother asked me, “Do you kids use ‘Tea’?”  I had no idea what she meant, and after pointing out a popular coffee shop she laughed and ran off a few more terms and finally exclaimed, “Reefers! Do you kids today use Reefers?”  I was shocked and worried that I might not have aired out my vehicle enough and she was prompting me into an admission.  After assuring me she wasn’t trying to trick me, my grandmother relayed stories of her experiences with cannabis before shows, and how it used to help her and her band mates relax and helped them, “really connect to the music.”

That day I first shared cannabis with my grandmother, she mocked my pipe as being too complicated and told me stories of “stix” what they used to call joints.  We enjoyed a fantastic show and on our way out of the venue my grandmother was elated.  After I told her this was the happiest I had seen her for a while she replied, “Normally it’s real hard at those shows, I don’t even hear the music.” As a young man who hadn’t experienced the pulses of pain that makes it difficult to sit for prolonged periods of time I asked, “Well what do you usually hear?”  Her eyes welled up behind her glasses and she replied, “Pain, normally all I hear when we come to these shows is pain. But tonight I heard the music.”  She took a few more steps clutching my arm, stopped and mused, “Do you think it was the reefers?”

Up until that point cannabis had been nothing more than fun to me, I didn’t enjoy the effects of alcohol and while others in my circle experimented with more dangerous drugs I liked the sense of control I could maintain with cannabis.  I stared back into my grandmother’s twinkling eyes and knew that something was different with her.  When I got home I jumped on the internet and began looking into the many testimonials of people using cannabis for pain relief and anti-inflammation.  Cannabis had been used for ages for these conditions!  After relaying the information to my grandmother, she remembered her grandmother using cannabis for her menstrual cramps.  As my grandmother’s health deteriorated and I became more experienced, I began making a glycerin tincture for her that she would always carry with her in a honey-bear bottle.  She had that bottle next to her at the hospital after her stroke and on her night stand when she passed away.

Later in my life as the ravages of time and mainly football started to take their toll on my joints, I too turned to cannabis as a safer alternative to the NSAIDs and other pharmaceutical poisons that were offered to me.  Now I use topical salves to battle my bouts of “Arthur” and happily think back to that fateful night and my grandmother’s eyes shining back at me.  “Do you think it was the reefers?” dances in my ears.

Daniel Mathews IHW

Sativa or Indica?

I’m a type one diabetic, have been for almost ten years. That’s the insulin dependent, check your sugars a million times daily, don’t think about eating sugar, type of diabetes. These are the obvious things about the disease.
What they don’t tell you during indoctrination is if you don’t take care of all the above mentioned things with complete detail is that the neuropathy (the death of your nerves in all of your body’s systems), or retinopathy (blood vessels in your eyes burst causing blindness) and gastroparesis (severe nausea and vomiting until the stomach eventually quits) will take over your life and diminish the quality of life almost to the point to point where you just want to give it all up.  I’m not whining, but ALL of this is very painful.  I’ve been on as much as 280 mg.’s of oxycodone a day to help deal with the pain.
About two years ago I started smoking MMJ.  Almost immediately I noticed that the MMJ helped with the anxiety and depression due to the diabetes, and in turn the pain levels came down.  That’s about the time that the dispensary that I was going to took a little more interest in my case. They taught me the difference between sativa and indica strains.  What I learned in regard to pain management is that the sativa helped, not so much with the direct relief of the neuropathy, but the emotional issues instead like the depression and anxiety, and in turn the indica strains DID help with the physical pain.  Learning to use both strains as needed has brought a quality of life that I thought had been long gone, not to mention I have cut my need for opiate relief by a third.  I am no longer on oral oxycodone but only a small transdermal patch that I replace every three days, NO MORE PAIN PILLS!!!!
So in ending I have to say that if you find that your NOT getting the relief that you expected from your MMJ, talk to your friends at your local dispensary to see if combining strains in a pain management regiment will help you better – don’t do it alone.
I say use both, ADIOS and SMOKE-EM IF YA GOT-EM!!!

S. S.
MMJ USER COLORADO

A Bad Back?

I was 18 years old the first time I injured my lower back.  It seems all the jobs I held in those days (over 30 years ago) could have had the job description of “carrying heavy stuff.”  The first time it happened, I was in agony.  So like any wise 18 year old, I worked through it by “carrying heavy stuff.”  I re-injured it many times over the years and pretty much walk around in pain all the time these days.
Most of the time the pain is tolerable.  If I exercise, stretch and keep the weight off, I do alright.  The problems arise when I re-injure myself to the extent that the pain is not tolerable.  My lower back muscles go into spasm, the nerves get pinched, pain shoots down my leg – not fun.  The mainstream doctor’s want to prescribe one of a variety of narcotic pain killers, in addition to a muscle relaxant. This is where the problem starts.  I won’t take narcotics, period.  Plus, the muscle relaxant also relaxes the rest of my body and my brain to the extent that I can’t function.
Enter Medical Marijuana.  Cannabis, in small doses, helps manage the pain and serves as a relaxant to help loosen up the muscles locked up around my L4 vertebra.  It also allows me to go on with my day, in some cases with a heightened sense of awareness.
I don’t smoke all the time, in fact, I haven’t had to use medical cannabis for over 8 months.  I’ve been lucky.  To me it’s medicine and like any medicine, it’s nice to know it’s there if I need it…

J.W.
Fort Collins

 

 

 

 

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