Yes Yes Yes Yes for Medical Marijuana!

So tomorrow is election day, which means we in Florida will FINALLY get to see if the medical marijuana initiative passes. Sadly, there’s been a push of scare tactics and money thrown by a gambler wanting this initiative to fail (so he can try and move a casino to Florida) … and sadly, a lot of folks still seem to live in the prohibition era, where they drink the stupid Kool-Aid that faux news (aka Fox “News”) pushes out, that stupid propaganda. Marijuana is a gateway drug! Caregivers will be drug pushers! My teenager will get a script for pot and I’ll never know! And this one … A coworker will get high and I’ll end up testing positive for drug use. Huh? What? Did I read that right?

Yes, you did.

Are some of us really that dense? That, forgive me for saying this, stupid? I guess so.

Okay, so how about this? Every person on heroin has had alcohol before, so alcohol MUST be a gateway drug, so how about we take away your beloved booze? A caregiver is just that, if you want to vote no for compassionate care giving, go ahead. Just pray karma doesn’t get you. Your teenager? Already gets pot, and without a script! As for the coworker’s cannabis use getting making you fail a drug test? Can’t do anything for that other than say try again.

I don’t need to preach to anyone on here about how this PLANT would do wonders for this pill-popping society. It’s the other side, but sadly, they’ll never read this. They wouldn’t care anyway.

Bah humbug!

Why do I live in Florida again? Because one day I hope we get it RIGHT for once! Please, please, please, vote YES YES YES YES! #voteyeson2

Advertisements

Dear Doctor

Dear Doctor,

I’m going to come clean with you. Actually, I’ve tried to be clean, because I know I’m going to have to submit to a urine test. So I’m going to be totally honest with you and pray this doesn’t backfire on me. When I do that urine test, I’m pretty sure there’s going to be a positive result for THC in my metabolites. But I can assure you that I have not used marijuana in over three weeks. I’ve been trying to be clean in order to get my prescription for hydrocodone. So I’ve had to do without both my pills for most of the past month, and the marijuana.

Since I’ve come clean, I have suffered the pain tremendously. I didn’t realize just how much a part that marijuana played in making me feel less pain. See, there’s never a day that I’m pain free. When I take one of the hydrocodones by itself, yes, the pain is a little less intense, but perhaps I’m not taking a large enough dose. After all, you do have me on the lowest dosage. But when I took a pill and used marijuana, I actually felt almost “normal.” What’s normal? Well, I mean what it must feel like to be a person who doesn’t suffer from intense pain. All the time. All the blasted time. So when I stopped using marijuana, and had to mete out those pills, there were days I could barely function.

I have become very frustrated. I started a blog about my pain. I wrote a manifesto, which actually started that blog. I found out there are hundreds of people just like me, suffering from chronic pain, unable to obtain the pain relief we so desperately want. What we desperately need. We just want pain relief and respect. I started sharing my story, and I’ve become somewhat of an activist. I think that marijuana should be legalized, particularly for medicinal purposes. I learned that this plant has been used close to 5,000 years to help ease medical maladies. It’s been proven to help with so many things. I know it helps me. How?

After I stopped marijuana, the insomnia kicked in. Doctor, you know that in my case of having fibromyalgia, that’s the worst thing that can happen to me. I usually can’t fall asleep until after 3:30 a.m. I’m working on a huge deadline at work, and it’s awful hard to focus and concentrate when I’m in a mental fog because of lack of sleep. This is the worst part, because the lack of sleep also makes me irritable, depressed, and angry. I’m angry because I’m in a situation where I cannot get pain relief, although I know it’s out there. I’m afraid when you get back that positive test result, you’re going to either cut off my medication, or refuse to see me anymore.

But you have helped me. You’re the first doctor willing to treat me for my condition. You’re the first one to write a pain prescription for me. You haven’t treated me like a drug addict. You’re the one that told me about the release Tramadol, so instead of popping four pills a day and going on a yo-yo of pain, I’m taking only the one in the morning. That helped somewhat. And the Lyrica you prescribed, that does help, too. But when I reach the late afternoon (even when I did use marijuana), the pain creeps back in. Maybe I need a higher dosage of the hydrocodone and/or the Lyrica.

I’d like to sleep again, but I don’t want to take Ambien, Xanax, or any other prescription. I know that marijuana is my natural sleep aid. I’d rather do something natural than add to my ever-growing medicine cabinet.

Another thing marijuana helps me with is my appetite. Most of the time now I’m nauseated, and I have absolutely no appetite. It’s hard for me to eat. And I like food! I like to cook! And bake! But now I barely have the energy, and I’m in too much pain to really want to do anything. I’ve already lost eight pounds. Not that that’s a bad thing, because I could be thinner. My point is, I’m not trying to lose weight. It’s coming off because I barely eat. Have you ever been able to eat when you’re nauseated?

I want to have an appetite again, but I don’t want another prescription. I’d rather use my natural remedy, the marijuana plant.

I’m wondering where you stand on medical marijuana, especially because we have that on the ballot this November election here in Florida. How do you feel about marijuana use? Do you know what cannabis cures? Do you support the initiative? If so, will you help me obtain medical marijuana? Because if recent polls indicate anything, and because of the dialogs I’ve had with other folks here, the initiative should pass overwhelmingly. I really do want to know how you feel about this issue. After all, you’re the one and only doctor willing to treat my pain right now. My primary doctor referred me to you because she knew you could help me, and she herself is fearful of the DEA.

Because I haven’t had many conversations with you, I hope you understand my hesitation in talking to you earlier. Sometimes I wish I could have gone in and talked to you, to get your advice, to know what’s going to happen after I take that drug test. You currently are my lifeline to living a life with lessened pain. I know it’s never going to go away, but it IS treatable. It can be more bearable.

So Doctor, when the lab notifies you that there’s THC in my system, please, please, please believe me and my words. I give you my honest word that I have not touched, nor looked, at marijuana for over three weeks. I don’t want to wait any longer to find out what happens. There’s a good chance you’re not going to write me any new prescriptions because of that THC. Because of the DEA. I know they’ve made it more difficult for you to treat us chronic pain patients. But I do plead with you that you treat me with compassion, and that you do not withhold my pain relief. I hope you’re willing to TREAT me, like you have in the past. After all, I’ve shown absolutely NO signs of drug abuse, you even have that written in my records. This was going to be, I believe, only the third prescription in six months (now it’s seven), that I was going to pick up. I have not abused my pills. And I’m not an abuser just because I used marijuana.

I did what I could to survive with my pain. It’s with me always. It will be with me until the day I die. I can live with that if I can have lessened pain. Please help me doctor. HELP me. Understand me. Believe me.

I have not used marijuana in weeks. I desperately need that pain prescription. I want to feel “normal” again. Do you understand?

There, I came clean. And I tried my best to be clean.

Thank you,
Your Patient

What’s Wrong with Feeling Good?

Let’s say that you’re having to take blood pressure medicine – every day for the rest of your life – to treat your high blood pressure, and your medicine runs out. Instead of the pharmacy automatically notifying your doctor that you need a new script, you have to personally pick up your new prescription at the doctor’s office. (Only you can pick it up.) When you arrive, you are notified that you must go to the lab, pee in a cup, and then come back for your prescription. So you go back and you’re told that you cannot have your blood pressure medicine. Why? Because you had something in your system. Perhaps it was a double patty cheeseburger with bacon. Perhaps it was THC. So now you don’t have any blood pressure medicine. What does that mean? You could have a stroke and die. Is that right? Of course not. It probably seems ridiculous to you. It should seem ridiculous, because it is. We could take the same situation and apply it to cholesterol medicine, or any medicine that you rely on to keep yourself alive.

Having fibromyalgia and suffering from chronic pain shouldn’t be treated any differently than prescribing medication for your high blood pressure; yet we are subjected to random drug tests in order to receive our prescriptions for pain medication.

The imaginary situation I described? That’s exactly what we with chronic pain have to do. And that’s just not right. What happens to me when I don’t have any pain medication? Well, I’ve had to mete out about ten pills over the last three weeks, which means I’ve gone days without any pain relief. It’s been a terrible, excrutiating time for me. I’m now suffering a fibromyalgia flare because of no pain medication, and no marijuana, which acted as my natural sleep aid. Now I have insomnia and cannot get to sleep.

Remember, marijuana is a natural plant, which has been on our planet Earth for thousands and thousands of years. Who knows, maybe millions. And for over 4,000 years marijuana was used as a therapeutic medicine for all types of ailments. So I’ve got a double whammy right now – I cannot use marijuana in order to pass a drug test. I’ve been marijuana free for 18 days now and still test positive for THC, which makes me even angrier because I HAVEN’T USED MARIJUANA but I’ll test positive for it. And then I’ll be denied any further pain medication. I had to sign a drug contract! Do you have to sign a contract for medicine that you take daily? Of course not! So how is this the slightest bit fair?

That’s not all. Without that marijuana as my natural sleep aid, I cannot get to sleep at night. This is probably the worst side effect, and the absolute worse scenario for a fibromyalgia sufferer. We never reach that deep, deep stage of sleep, so our muscles never relax. Last night, I got less than four hours of sleep. The night before was about the same. Imagine this happening every night. Today I can barely function. I cannot just call out of work because I’m tired. I have very important work to do, but my head is full of “fog.” This is what it feels like on a “fibro flare.” Your ENTIRE BODY screams at you, and the pressure points and in my case, neck and shoulders, scream in agony CONSTANTLY. There isn’t one moment that I am pain free. And I might just face the situation where I run out of pills (I have ONLY TWO), and if I don’t pass that drug test, I don’t get my prescription, which means I suffer even more.

Marijuana is a plant. It is natural. It grows wild. It’s just like any other plant. But it’s therapeutic. It’s ALREADY been proven – thousands and thousands of years ago – that it IS therapeutic. So why in the heck aren’t we using it now? Why can’t I use it to help me sleep, to help my appetite (which I have none now), to help lower my blood pressure, to ensure that I don’t develop glaucoma like my mother and grandmother, it helps fight cancer (which my dad and other grandmother died from), it helps ease my pain, and so what if it makes me feel good?

What’s wrong with feeling good? Why is marijuana illegal? Because it makes us feel good. Again, I ask, what’s wrong if I want to feel good from using a plant?

Why do folks drink alcohol? Because it makes them feel good. But that’s legal. Why do folks smoke cigarettes, one of the most proven addicting substances? Because it makes them feel good. But that’s legal too. Why do folks drink coffee? Because it helps stimulate them. It makes you feel good. But that’s legal. But yet you cannot use marijuana, which isn’t addictive, nor is it debilitating like alcohol. But it makes you feel good.

It’s high time we got the truth out about marijuana. It’s a plant, it’s natural, and there’s absolutely no reason why a person shouldn’t be allowed to feel good.

And it’s a downright shame to make me suffer even more because I used a natural plant to help relieve my chronic pain. Gosh, I’m angry.

And I’m going to spread the truth.

Please help. Share this post – and any other blog post – that talks about this subject. Join me on twitter, @chronic_pain. You wouldn’t believe the number of people who feel the same way.

If you want change, you have to BE the change. Let’s make our voices HEARD!

IMG_0794

Spread the Truth, Not Scare Tactics

Yesterday I suffered from a fibromyalgia flare, where suddenly I had lost all energy, felt like I was going to pass out, and my entire being screamed in agony. The only thing that helped was sleep. Because I’m down to a measly few pills, I have to mete them out carefully. I knew if yesterday was bad, there would be another day it would be worse. Remember, I’ve been suffering from this for well over 20 years. I know what to expect, unfortunately.

So I did without any pain relief. (And cried several times, although crying doesn’t make the situation any better, it just makes it worse.) So today I’m using that sadness and frustration and turning it into the proverbial “squeaky wheel.” Alas, I’m still testing positive for THC although it’s been several weeks I even used marijuana. This wouldn’t be an issue if medical marijuana was legal in Florida.

How can a plant be illegal? And furthermore, how can the drug test for marijuana be legal if it’s not accurate? Because it certainly isn’t. Even if you test positive today, it doesn’t mean you’ve used marijuana recently! Or even within the last several weeks!

It’s just not right, and making a chronic pain user pee in a cup in order to obtain medically-needed prescriptions is just downright wrong. Stop treating us like drug addicts and treat us like patients. That means TREAT us, don’t just dope us up on whatever the latest pharmaceutical company is pushing on you, to push on us.

Currently, my real frustration is with the politicians and wanna-be second-term governors or even president, that spout out untruths about marijuana and what would happen if marijuana was legalized for medical use. A recent Reuters poll shows that 88% of Floridians support legalization of medical marijuana while only 10% oppose it. Like Eric Shapiro asked, “Should the 10% dictate policy?” It seems like only the politicians have these extremely outdated views (for example, Jeb Bush recently used scare tactics in Florida, urging against medical marijuana because it would ruin tourism and businesses in Florida). Hmmmm. How’s that recreational pot working out in Colorado?

Six months after the legalization of marijuana, Colorado’s tax revenue skyrocketed as crime fell. In the first four months, marijuana sales were more than $202 million, about a third of them recreational. Taxes from recreational sales were almost $11 million.

That is $213 million dollars in the first four months! From a plant! That is natural! And costs nothing to grow! Tourism has gone up, crime has gone down, new businesses are open, and the sky has not fallen. Nor will it. And now Colorado has $213 million dollars it didn’t have before. Imagine the good that can do. And how about tourism?

Colorado store owners Chuck Reynolds and Lee Olesen said they had recorded visitors from all 50 states since opening in April. There regular customers? Senior citizens and veterans who didn’t sign up for medical marijuana cards for fear of losing their federal health benefits. … “I think it should be legal everywhere,” said Mike, a former National Transportation Safety Board employee.

There’s real incentives – proven incentives – to legalize and tax marijuana. Since the debate in Florida is for medical marijuana, I’ll continue to spread the truth about the benefits of a natural plant called, “cannabis,” a.k.a. “marijuana.” Let’s check out the following graphic. Therapeutic uses listed are for gliomas, alzheimers, fibromyalgia, dystonia, hepatitis C, diabetes, osteoporosis, MRSA, multiple sclerosis, ALS, chronic pain, tourette’s syndrome, HIV, hypertension, sleep apnea, GI disorders, incontinence, and rheumatoid arthritis. Our ancestors figured this out thousands of years ago. So why again is this plant illegal?

Herbal Benefits of Medical Marijuana

This isn’t a comprehensive list of what all marijuana can treat, but I can personally attest that it DOES help with fibromyalgia, it DOES help with chronic pain, it DOES help with hypertension, and one that isn’t listed, it’s a natural sleep aid. Since I stopped using marijuana, I have suffered more pain, a fibromyalgia flare (that I hadn’t had in three months because of the combination of pain medication and marijuana), and I have terrible insomnia. I can no longer fall asleep soon after I go to bed. Sometimes it’s after 3:00 a.m. before I fall asleep. Do you know what that does to a person with fibromyalgia? It turns me into a walking zombie.

I’m not a drug addict. But I’m treated like one, and that’s just not fair. But that’s another post, and that one will be about hypocrisy at its worst.

Meanwhile, I want to thank everyone who has joined this blog, all of you that have commented, given me hope, and provided me facts about the medications I’m currently taking. And the comment from namenews, “Keep Rocking, Activist!” made my day. It’s people like you who keep me going.

It’s people like us that make change. So help me be the change. Help me be the squeaky wheel!

The Injustice! Is This Legal?

med mar

If a cop pulled me over, he/she must have reasonable suspicion to search my vehicle; I would have had to act in some way to justify the search. Same as with my house. The police just cannot show up and search my house without proving to a judge that they have reasonable suspicion of wrongdoing on my part. But how is it right that I must submit to a drug test for my doctor in order to receive any pain pill worth a darn (yep, meaning a scheduled narcotic drug) when there is absolutely no reasonable suspicion that I have been doing anything wrong?

I have been a patient for over six months and I was going to pick up only my third prescription for Hydrocodone, you know, that whopping five milligrams of pain relief. (insert huge sarcasm here) That meant I made sixty pills last for six months. As a matter of fact, in each of the doctor’s notes, it says that I show “no signs of drug abuse.”

So you tell me – I’ve done nothing wrong, exhibited no bad behavior, but in order to pick up that prescription, I must now pee in a cup to prove I haven’t been using other drugs. Like I said in my first post (THE MANIFESTO), that’s a problem for me because I have been using marijuana for many, many years to help my pain. Remember, I suffer from fibromyalgia, and for the last 20 years, I’ve never been prescribed narcotics. I had to do whatever I could so I can function as a normal human being and not end up in the bed suffering from pain each and every day of my life. So yes, I used marijuana. Big deal.

I quit using marijuana weeks ago just so I could pass this stupid, unjustified, unreasonable test. I am angry because although I have a few pills left, they’re the only ones I can take to relieve my pain. They will run out within a week. I go without some days because I know there will come a day – soon – that I hurt so, so, so bad, that I have to mete out these pills.

So although I haven’t USED marijuana is weeks, I’ve taken ten at-home tests so far and each one has resulted in a positive result. I haven’t even LOOKED at marijuana, much less used it. I feel really sorry for anybody having to submit to these tests. They don’t actually prove that you’ve been using marijuana recently, only that THC remains in your fat cells for a long period of time. Considering I’ve used marijuana for how long? I may never test negative! So how is this test correct? How is it legal? I haven’t been using marijuana, and I haven’t been abusing my pain meds, but I am GUILTY until proven innocent. That goes against the grain of what America is supposed to be. It just doesn’t make sense. And it makes me angry as hell.

Why marijuana is illegal is because of a series of misinformation spread by those that wanted to benefit from the sale of alcohol – way back around the Depression. Suddenly, marijuana became a bad, bad thing, even though it had been used for thousands of years to treat medical maladies. Suddenly marijuana users became seedy criminals.

That’s the farthest thing from the truth. I am about as far from being a criminal as you can get.

So anybody, tell me, how is this random drug test legal? How is this justified?

Oh yeah, those pharmaceutical companies (who lobby Congress and donate tons of money … think about that …) don’t want to lose any money. Keep on pumping us up with non-narcotic remedies and make a fortune, instead of us being able to grow a naturally-growing plant and use it for free.

I’m mad as hell. And you should be too. Maybe the United States isn’t such a free country after all. Next thing you know, maybe we’ll have random searches in our houses to get rid of that “evil weed.” Be careful, America, what you wish for. It might just come true.

Signed, from a non-marijuana user testing positive,
Your Activist to Make Marijuana Legal Once Again

P.S. Thank you @thcterry for the wonderful graphic that explains all the wonderful uses of marijuana!

Wanted: God – The Cannabis Chronicles

Wanted-for-the-production-and-distribution-of-illegal-plants-god

I try to imagine a bottle of booze growing off of a plant in the woods, but I just cannot see it. Why? Because booze doesn’t grow. But cannabis does. Let’s continue learning about marijuana’s many benefits, and how for over 4,000 years, this naturally growing plant was used to treat medical conditions.

I believe that many people today aren’t even aware of the truth about pot, they just believe the many untruths that were spread in the early 1900’s in the United States. For example, the Bureau of Narcotics Commission Henry Anslinger said that it was “a public enemy seeking to destroy the community …”

Hmmm. Let’s think about that for a moment. I, for one, volunteer regularly in my community. Come to think of it, most of the volunteers I work with also use marijuana. Nope, we are not out to destroy society, we’re trying to make it better.

Now let’s jump all the way back to 1213 BC. That was 3227 years ago. This time the Egyptians learned the value of this naturally growing plant. Cannabis pollen was found on the mummy of Ramesses II, and ancient Egypt prescriptions for cannabis included treatment for the eyes (glaucoma), inflammation, as well as other treatments. My mother and grandmother suffered from glaucoma, and along with regular checkups (and administration of $80 eye drops each night), my mother’s ophthalmologist told her to drink wine or smoke marijuana to keep the eye pressure down.

Why aren’t we using marijuana to treat glaucoma today? Perhaps the pharmaceutical companies want glaucoma patients to continue paying for the $80 prescription of eye drops (and it’s a very small bottle). And yes, my mother had insurance. Instead, we could be using a natural growing plant, such as cannabis. It was proven 3227 years ago to be effective. (And it would be free! After all, raindrops are free!)

Jump to 1000 BC, where we’ll go to India. “Bhang,” a mixture of cannabis and milk, was used as an anesthetic in India. It was also an anti-phlegmatic. During this time, cannabis was began to be used to treat many maladies in India. They, too, learned that marijuana should be used medically.

In 700 BC, the medical use of marijuana was recorded in the Middle East’s Venidad, a volume of ancient Persian religious text, which was written around the 7th century BC. This text mentioned “bhang” and listed cannabis as the “most important of 10,000 medicinal plants.”

In 200 BC, cannabis was used in ancient Greece as a remedy for edema, inflammation, and earaches.

For over a thousand years, humans discovered the benefits of using naturally growing marijuana to treat a variety of medical conditions.

Let’s end this walk through history with a quote from Genesis 1:29, from the Bible:

Then God said, ‘I give you every seed-bearing plant on the face of the whole earth and every tree that has fruit with seed in it. …'”

For God’s sake, it’s a plant. It’s a weed. It’s an herb!

P.S. A thank you to weedlist.com for this absolutely ironic poster! I’m not sure of the creator, but this is where I found this gem. And a huge thank you to medicalmarijuana.procon.org for the fun history lessons.

The Cannabis Timeline – A Walk Through History

I found the best website today that contains a timeline on the history of marijuana and its use for medical treatment. Guess when the earliest use of medical marijuana was recorded. I’ll give you a hint – it was a very, very long time ago. Think it was in the last 100 – 200 years? Ha!

Let’s go back all the way to 2900 BC. That’s not a typo. That’s right, 2900 BC. That’s 4,914 years ago. Wow. (I even used my calculator. ;-0)

I found this very interesting, and wanted to share this with whoever stumbles across this blog or posts. I also want to thank the folks at ProCon.org for researching and publishing the history of cannabis that I’ll share with you.

In 2900 BC, the Chinese Emporer Fu Hsi referenced marijuana as a popular medicine. “Ma” is the Chinese word for Cannabis. He said marijuana was a popular medicine that possessed both yin and yang.

If marijuana was used over 4,914 years ago, why aren’t we using this natural plant to help heal people? It just doesn’t seem right.

Now we’ll jump 200 years to the Chinese Emporer Shen Nung, who was considered the “Father of Chinese medicine.” He discovered marijuana’s healing properties, as well as two other herbal medicines, Ginseng and Ephedra.

It wasn’t until 1500 BC that a written reference to medical marijuana appeared in the Chinese “Pharmacopeia.”

But it’s the following information that really caught my attention: The Book of Exodus referenced holy anointing oil made from cannabis! Yes, that’s right. The holy anointing oil, described in the original Hebrew version in Exodus (30:22-23), apparently contained over six pounds of “kaneh-bosem,” (cannabis), and was extracted into six quarts of olive oil, also containing other fragrant herbs. The anointed were literally drenched in this potent, fragrant mixture.

It’s an herb! It’s a plant. It’s a weed. It’s cannabis.cannabis

I’m not going to share the entire timeline in one post, but you can bet I’ll share other tidbits about the history of marijuana in other posts.

It wasn’t until prohibition time that some folks put a negative spin on marijuana, right here in the United States. Over 4,000 years of use and suddenly this herb, this weed, this plant, this naturally-growing substance, is bad? I think not!

It’s high time we get the facts out, the truth – that marijuana CAN and SHOULD be used to help treat those suffering. Just like me.

Please help spread the word.

And yes, pun intended. 😀