The first time I smoked pot I was thirteen. My friend Jenny invited me to go to the carnival with her and her very cool older sister. We smoked sticky purple buds out of a wooden pipe while riding the Ferris wheel looking out over the city of Anchorage, Alaska. The rocking suspension of the chairs, the slip of chill still present in the summer wind as it blew through our hair, the shine that surrounded everything as I laughed until tears streamed down my cheeks, high above the world, around and around again, is a feeling I haven’t forgotten. It’s a feeling that has proven contrary to the prevailing cultural narrative of cannabis.
After the carnival, we went to Dunkin’ Donuts and devoured our first round of Boston creams while still standing at the register. When we ordered more, the cashier asked if we were going to eat them sitting down or if we would be enjoying this batch standing at the register as well. We cracked up and sat down.
Better doughnuts than those doughnuts, on that particular day, have not been invented.
But, thanks to cannabis legality in some states, better options to consume cannabis, to use it to treat a myriad of medical conditions, enhance overall wellness, relieve pain, alleviate anxiety, enhance creativity, elevate mood, and motivate healthy interactions with the natural world have finally been invented!
Not all of my early experimentation with cannabis were as fun or positive as my first time. I frequently struggled with the prevailing message that weed was harmful to my health and brain, that I was using weed to avoid being a responsible sober person. I quickly learned that my desire to consume cannabis was more indicative of my brokenness than my desire for wholeness.
I frequently consumed too much. Mindful dosing wasn’t really a thing in prohibition and the intoxication mindset is so different than the healing mindset. I had many experiences of anxiety and discomfort. For awhile I quit using it at all because I thought that all cannabis gave me terrible anxiety. Really I was overdosing but had no idea. No way of understanding.
Cannabis prohibition has been so effective. Also so damaging.
Luckily, I am now in the legalized state of Oregon. We are one of the first states to have a truly comprehensive structure for adult use and our cannabis community is populated by passionate professionals. I’ve had the unique opportunity to be on the front lines of the growing movement of cannabis as a wellness product and that paradigm shift has been profound.
I have realized that, not only is cannabis nourishing to our bodies and brains, but that its legalization and regulation would positively, and radically, shift prevailing systemic cultural problems as well such as racism, prison reform, gender equality, healthcare, and ecological sustainability.
We health coaches have been shoving kale down people’s throats for long enough. Kale is mineral rich as all get out, but doesn’t even come close to being the powerhouse of cannabis. It’s my ethical duty as a health advocate to get the word out! Cannabis is the new kale!
I use cannabis daily to manage my own depression, anxiety, and PTSD. I’ve been quietly coaching clients to use cannabis for years. I am finally convinced that using my voice to illuminate the incredible benefits of cannabis for our bodies and our planet is the most powerful thing I can do to help alleviate so much needless suffering.
So I made a little thing. It’s the five most important things you need to know to start using cannabis for health and wellness and it’s yours. For free.
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This is only the beginning, darling. There’s so much beauty to come.
Together we can midwife the death of antiquated ideals, and birth a new cultural climate of equanimity, of abiding joy.
Together we can be free.