Returning to cannabis

Published Jan 25, 2019 04:38 p.m. ET

What you should know if you’re thinking about marijuana use after a long break

 It’s the early 1980’s, and after a year of taking a lot of prescription drugs for pain, including Tylenol’s and muscle relaxers, antidepressants and sleeping pills, I finally felt brave enough to disclose to my primary care physician the reason I wasn’t asking for a refill on any of my prescriptions.  I was nervous at the time because I never knew how he would respond but, I went for it, it was because I had discovered marijuana and felt like it had helped more than all the prescriptions I had been taking. Which I knew had been affecting my bowels as I had become constipated, my liver and kidneys were also being put at risk not to mention the long list of other side effects that could result from the medication. My physician's response was, if it's working for you keep doing it, I just can’t give you a prescription for it. That didn’t matter; there was then and still is today, always somewhere to get weed. The difference today is he could write me a prescription for it.

But today unlike back then you better be prepared to pay bit more. Back in the day, you could purchase a nickel or dime bag which, was measured by fingers against the bag, one finger ($5) or two fingers ($10). That same amount today would likely cost you fifty to 60 dollars.

The plants grown today are not the same as what you smoked back in high school either, it’s a whole new ball game.  Customized strains are specific for different effects or medical purposes. The THC content today is also much higher than what it was. Back in high school, we likely smoked, as we put it back then, to catch a buzz, today with a better understanding of the advantages to consuming cannabis, and its numerous uses, it must make you wonder if we had been helping ourselves incognito all along. Had the stigma not been attached to it and we had understood that we have an endocannabinoid system, as do all plants and animals, we may have been able to help a lot more people from suffering. I can say that the stigma that was previously and still is to some degree attached to partaking of the herbal medicine has been a distinct disadvantage to society in general.

There is still a lot of new and upcoming information that will change the way we look at marijuana, whether we are using it recreationally or for medical purposes. Now that it’s legal here in Canada, we can look forward to more acceptance, understanding, and more compassion for the medical marijuana patient.  Perhaps because of the legalization of this drug, we can help with other conditions such as the current opioid crisis.

 Therefore, today unlike years ago we have an opportunity to discover how truthfully healing this plant medicine can be. There were many different native cultures that used it for healing purposes and now moving forward so can we.

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