When I was 16 years old, I took my first drag off a joint. It was 1975, I was walking to high school with friends when we stopped off at a gas station bathroom to partake. I had been failing high school, but it was expected. A test had been done when I was in […]
When I was 16 years old, I took my first drag off a joint. It was 1975, I was walking to high school with friends when we stopped off at a gas station bathroom to partake.
I had been failing high school, but it was expected. A test had been done when I was in elementary school, reporting to my parents that I would have to work harder than most, just to be an average student. That kind of information at such a young age does something to you – lowers your expectations, to say the least.
They didn’t diagnose mental disorders at that time, they didn’t even call them disorders, the term was still illness. But since then I’ve realized I suffer from Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD); with a mild case of Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD); with some anxiety and few phobias thrown in just for fun.
After taking a couple of hits that morning, the bathroom door opened to a crisp beautiful day, in a way I’d never noted prior. Everything seemed enhanced and wonderful. It was an uplifting feeling and I liked it immediately. But I liked it because it worked for me, neurologically – I just didn’t know it at the time. No one did. All anyone knew was it was a bad drug, with visions of your brain as a fried egg in a skillet over a flame.
That day in school was the first time I was able to sit and focus on the work at hand. In English class, an assignment of writing one Haiku poem was given. I knocked off ten without blinking. By the time I was 19, I was a published poet, with my third eye fully opened.
I never really did well in school, couldn’t get through the first semester of community college. I even lied about a college education for years. But, I did have the wherewithal to start my own flower gardening company at 24, leading to writing and producing a local gardening television show. This led me to produce and write for productions in Los Angeles; enjoyed in-house positions in newspapers, and then magazines.
Smoking cannabis has always given me immediate clarity and allowed me to focus on the task at hand. You could say it was my Ritalin in high school, but I’ve never written anything professionally unless I was medicated, as it’s impossible for me to sit and focus otherwise.
It also lifts me up and out of depression, both as a young adult, and now, as a menopausal woman with a double-whammy of hormonal disorders and a combined diagnosis of Thyroid Disease.
Aside from the physical symptoms helped emotionally, the spectrum disorders are the toughest to deal with on a regular basis. Before I realized smoking was medicating, I had the inclination of smoking too much – not fully understanding why.
When I began ingesting for breast cancer five years ago, I realized that if I ingested the plant concentrate it helped more, and the effects lasted longer than when I smoked. If I smoke on top of ingesting, it enhances the effect and I feel better overall for longer periods of time.
In January of 2017 Jerusalem’s Shaare Zedek Medical Center began the process of testing the effects of cannabinoids on 120 autistic children. Israel has led the pack in discovering and studying the benefits cannabinoids, and this study was so popular they had to turn families away – with a lengthy waiting list.
The Autistic Spectrum is wide, with ADD and OCD just two symptoms patients present with, including me. These symptoms are said to be caused by a lack of dopamine to the frontal lobe, where clarity and focus come from.
As reported in Salon.com, in 2015 a study in Germany involving 30 patients with ADD or ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder), found that all cases presented with improved concentration after using “some form of cannabis flower,” with eight patients using Dronabinol – a synthetic THC, typically prescribed for nausea and vomiting.
As studies are compiled, I’ll be content to wake and bake to start my work day, after ingesting for sleep than night prior. If I need a little something more, I’ll take a small amount of tincture during the day. I’ll also do a chamomile concentrate to calm my anxiety, as needed.
I’m fully medicated while writing this piece – and, no, I didn’t smoke the entire joint. Everything in moderation. It’s a matter of knowing.
Be well, know your dose to medicate not recreate. Don’t just get stoned – get educated.
Fine Print: This article is based on my own experiences. Other’s techniques and outcomes may vary.