Post Traumatic Stress Disorder is often characterized as being a “symptom of war,” meaning that primarily soldiers have it. But every person goes through their own battles, and I am no different. I realized I had PTSD when I was 19, but my then-therapist—along with almost every other therapist I had up to that point and many after—just wanted to feed me more pharmaceutical drugs instead of addressing the problem through actually talking, which is what I was in therapy for. I eventually found my salvation through the proper use of cannabis. I didn’t get a medical card until recently, after a month of sobriety resulting in my worst neuroses bubbling to the surface.
For those who are unaware of what it actually feels like to have PTSD, for me, it feels like my head is a beehive being hit with a flaming baseball bat. Anyone around me is subject to a sobbing distrust and screaming rage that my mind tells me is their fault. The anxiety is unforgiving, freezing my body—it tells me everyone hates me, everyone I have ever loved wants nothing to do with me because I'm so broken. It says if I move, I'll die, so maybe I should go ahead and move and get it over with. There are more symptoms but I think you get the idea.
Shortly after my most recent realization—at the suggestion of our resident cannabis connoisseur, Joshua Lee—I went to meet with the professionals at R. Greenleaf on the Westside to get some help. After being diagnosed, I expected my card to come in 60-90 days, but I received it after just a month. Since then, I've sampled various strains and intake methods to see what is right for me, and I've found that I prefer sativa and CBD, though different situations call for different strains.
I ran out of sativa over the weekend, so I headed on over to PurLife in Midtown and restocked. I asked the ever-friendly staff if they could help me figure out what strain I got at the beginning of December, and lucky for me, they keep that on record. I found out it was the sativa-dominant strain Blue Dream (THC: 20.5%, CBD: 0.04%), but they only had it available in pre-rolled joints so I happily purchased one for $9. I decided to grab my favorite CBD edible, Medi-Crackers (CBD: 5mg/cracker, $12/2.9 oz bag), from R. Greenleaf while I was in the neighborhood.
I particularly like Blue Dream because it’s a very mellow high. I’m still functional, but it enhances my mood and eases my anxiety. I've read that people with bad anxiety generally don’t do well with sativas, but I really like Blue Dream because it completely relaxes me without draining my energy. It’s an excellent pre- or post-work de-stressor. When I got back home around 5:30pm, I grabbed my favorite lighter and smoked a quarter of it, but didn't feel anything. The fruity smell drifted across my face as I inhaled another quarter of the joint and started to feel that smoldering bliss of Blue Dream. I remember the taste from my first try of this strain being purely sweet, but now wrapped in this paper, it was a little less flavorful but still tasty and effective. My body and mind relaxed enough for me to read, exercise, make dinner, pack a lunch for the next day and clean my house all before 10pm with no anxiety or buzzing in my mind.
I prefer to save the Medi-Crackers for stressful days so I can stay calm while working. Using one cracker per hour usually keeps me functional without any of the stress, anxiety or sleepiness that often accompanies the use of sativa and indica strains. On one of my busiest days at work, I decided to make it easier on myself by popping the cheese-flavored crackers (cooked in cannabutter, so it still smells like cannabis) once every one and a half to two hours. I got all of my work done and then some, all the while staying perfectly calm and collected.
Overall as well as on a quotidian basis—from work capabilities to social relationships to personal peace of mind—medical cannabis has had a major beneficial impact on my life. So, dear readers, I look forward to spreading the knowledge and exploring the options Burque provides for medical cannabis patients.