For-Profit

Hello dear reader(s)!

Watch any sports lately?  How about a cooking show?  See any commercials?  Were any of them for alcohol?

In a few minutes, I am probably going to have a special (cannabis infused) brownie.  (Tomorrow I have shit to do, or else I might tomorrow too.)  Part of it will be for my chemotherapy-induced neuropathy pain that is acting up.  Part of it will be to help my anxiety that is so strong this month.  Part of it will be to give me the appetite I need to eat dinner tonight.  Part of it will be because it seems to (seems to because I have no actual studies that show causation) keep my blood counts a bit higher than they are when I have not had any in a while.  Part of it will be to try to prevent some of the nightmares I get this month from coming tonight.

But part of it?  Part of it will just be to help me relax a bit.

And yet, on the federal level, this is a crime.  Jeffy-boy and company do not care for it one bit.  That’s fine, they don’t have to have any.  More for us.

Why is this a problem?

Do you know what I have never seen?  I have never seen a person under the influence of marijuana (and only marijuana) hit their spouse.  I have never seen a person under the influence of marijuana start a bar fight.  I have never seen a person under the influence of marijuana think they are invincible and can drive one hundred miles per hour even though they are too drunk to stand.  And most importantly, I have never seen a person turn yellow and die a slow, horrible death from liver failure because of marijuana.

Guess what I’ve seen from people under the influence of legal, advertised alcohol?

I use cannabis for pain.  I use it to help me relax.  I use it for many reasons.  Because of that, I don’t feel like I need many prescription drugs I would have no problems getting legally.  I had a prescription for heavy opioids before I started realizing the full benefits of cannabis.  You will never catch me at a park with a needle in my arm.  You will never catch me with a brown bag over a bottle.  I have something much safer that is so much more effective with fewer side-effects.

I think it is hilarious that the supposed free-market loving Republicans are against legalizing marijuana.   Taking money from the alcohol lobby and the pharmaceutical lobby to keep it illegal in order to protect the inferior products that are marketed and pushed to us like all the processed crappy food was when I was growing up.

And let’s talk about that food.  Remember when people thought butter was horrible, and margarine was the healthy way to go?  Or the “Low Fat” food was a good thing?  Or avocados were bad because they were fatty fruits?

We are living in an age of capitalism out of control.  When the need for more money puts a large number of people, even entire societies at risk, maybe there needs to be a different way.

It’s no secret that I have considered myself a Democratic Socialist long before I knew who Bernie Sanders was.  But as I see the horrible things companies are doing with our food, our medicine, our healthcare, and housing all in the name of profit, I am digging in even more than ever.  I wonder how these fucking pieces of shit sleep at night.  Maybe on all those dangerous drugs they bribe your doctor into prescribing.

I am not anti-medicine.  I do not believe cannabis cures most things.  I do, based on my own experiences and the studies that have been able to be conducted, believe that it treats and can help prevent many things.  And I am certain that it is only being kept illegal at the federal level in order to protect the profits of industries that trade off of inferior substances.

I choose not to participate.  I will do my own research, and I will try what I choose.  And if something works better for me, that’s what I will do.

I will not eat the artificial everything plus preservatives if I can find fresh and real.  I will not take the synthetic, physically addictive, mildly effective, side-effect prone pill if I know my natural medicine would do a better job of treating the condition.

My life is not for the profit of others.

Fuck Anxiety

Hello dear reader(s)!

Last night after midnight (I guess that makes it early morning), I made the mistake of reading my “On This Day” feed from Facebook.  Today in my history is a very bad day.  No matter who I love now, or how much, the fact remains that two years ago today, I walked with the person I loved into the hospital and she never walked out.  So I couldn’t sleep last night after that.  Today, I am totally fucked up.

On top of that, I am not the only one in the house with bad anxiety.  So, yeah.

I am very happy I have reentered the blog-type-thinging world.  It is a coping mechanism.  Coping mechanisms are vital to get through this bullshit.

One of the big issues I have with anxiety though, is that I feel very unmotivated to ever even begin doing any of the things that help me to cope.  Once I force myself, I feel better, but I really have to force it.

People who know me, know I have been through a lot.  A multi-year long battle against my body is really no fun at all.  I have been hospitalized so much that I could fake being a doctor.  I still have so many issues years after the cancer is gone.

And yet, I think the toll it (and everything else) has taken on my mind is far worse.  I am not certain that 100% of the fatigue I feel so often is purely due to the damage from the treatment and all the complications.  I am beginning to believe a lot of it is purely due to the damage it has caused my mind.

I like cannabis for my anxiety, but I do not like being high ALL the time, so I use it sparingly.  It was made recreational legal (at the state level, fuck you Jeffyboy!) here and so I occasionally enjoy an edible for it.  I am very anti-driving under any type of influence though, and so even if I didn’t mind being high all of the time, I couldn’t use it every time I felt it would help.  I’ve tried the CBD stuff with no success.  There has to be some THC in it to help me.

Pharmaceuticals for anxiety are a fucking joke.  I’ve been on Ativan and Clonazepam and they both make me feel like fucking zombie (all the impairment of cannabis, without the pleasant feeling) and are highly addictive and can kill you if you run out.  That knowledge does not exactly help one’s anxiety.

“Hey, guess what, anxious person?  The doctor who refills your medication is on a fucking vacation and you can’t get a refill because the DEA has decided that drugs are bad, Mm’Kay?  So, too bad, so sad if the withdrawals kill you.”

So I don’t use that pharmaceutical poison.  It isn’t that effective, and the side effects are prohibitively awful.  In other words, like a lot of my conditions, I just have to deal.

I take no medicine for my neuropathy (although the cannabis can help with that too) because the medicine for it is worse than the pain.  Being in constant pain isn’t good for anxiety either.  But knowing that most legal medicines are actually rather terrible and pushed on us like candy causes a little anxiety too.

It is no wonder people drink themselves to death.  There is no really effective way to just stop the wheels is our head from spinning without some kind of substance.  Pharmaceuticals are dangerous and ineffective.  Alcohol is also very, very dangerous and causes severe rebound anxiety.  Cannabis is pretty effective, but is not federally legal (and therefore not as widely available), and comes with a ridiculous stigma associated with it.  It also causes some intoxication and sometimes you just don’t want to be intoxicated.  Out of all the substances, I will choose cannabis, but I wish there was some way just to cure this fucking head disease.  I have tried therapy, and while I have learned some techniques to manage it better, it sure as hell doesn’t make it go away.

In the meantime, I will just cope the best I can, like I always do.

 

 

 

 

Belonging

Hello dear reader(s)!

I don’t belong in this society.  I don’t fit in.  I am an outsider who doesn’t go out of my way to be different.  I am not rebelling against anything, even though I have issues with plenty.  I am not attempting to be a nonconformist.  I don’t dress the way I do as a statement.  I do not have my one tattoo (and wish I could have more) in an attempt to stand out.  I didn’t shave my head for so long as a statement of anything other than I liked how it looked on me, and it was easier and cheaper than going to a salon.  Oh yeah, and because it kept my head cool and less sweaty when I was drumming.

I just can’t seem to make myself go along with the world that exists on the surface.  I am so fed up with the vapidness.  The materialism for the sake of materialism.  The ever-increasing belief that life is a competition.  The belief that enjoying this life is a sin.  I am fed up with those who would rather live vicariously through celebrities or athletes, than try to live their own lives to the fullest.  I am sick of those who would kill in the name of a god who would make them bow to him.  I am sick of those who would rather kneel to the divine than use that power to empower themselves.  I am sick of those who would persecute others for not believing in the divine at all.  And I am sick of those who would persecute people for hoping to believe in something larger than themselves.

People are living for a future they may never see.  I know that it is wise to plan ahead, but how much do you really want to sacrifice for a day that is not guaranteed?  I’ve always believed people should live more for today than they do, but it took almost dying for me to really begin to put it in practice.  I still fight myself on it occasionally, because my anxiety likes to step in, but for the most part, I am not going to miss out on something for a day that may never come.  When I was in the hospital, being told I had no chance and should call palliative care, I wasn’t afraid of dying.  I was afraid of dying having not experienced so many things I wanted to experience because of fears of the future.   I was afraid of dying and leaving people behind who may not have known how much they meant to me.  Death comes for us all.

People are indoctrinated, from the earliest age, to believe that this life isn’t the one where we are to experience joy.  This life is simply work to prepare us for the next one.  What should be comforting, is actually a tool used to enslave us.  Even those who reject this indoctrination, struggle with the remnants and cultural forces it creates.  What better to way make suffering acceptable?   What better way to keep in people in line?

I’ve been reflecting this morning on growing up.  From the blatant lies and right-wing propaganda forced upon us by police officers in the D.A.R.E. program, to the white supremacist lies taught to us in history class.  I’ve been thinking about the mandatory attendance policies that affected academic grades of students who aced the final exams of classes they hardly ever showed up for, yet limited their ability to move ahead to something more challenging.  I’ve been thinking of the bell system and lining up for everything.  I have been thinking about all of the ways in which we have been brainwashed into our decline as consumer drones for corporate masters.  I’ve been thinking of dress codes to stifle our expression, as well as the ones designed to deflect personal responsibility from controlling our sexual urges.

The concept of school should be to teach children to think, and to learn for themselves.  Instead, I lived in a system that taught us to go along, no matter how wrong those in positions of authority may be.  I reflect on that, and realize it is no wonder that so many people were not terrified of a fascist figure winning the Presidency.  Of course not; they have been taught to submit to those who claim power for all their lives.

Luckily, I had a bit of influence at home to help me learn to think critically.  I had parents who did not blindly follow authority just because those in the positions managed to attain it.

It has been a blessing and a curse.  On the one hand, I had the pressure to do well in those systems I had already learned were so very flawed.  On the other, I have lived my life to a greater degree than many I know, who always seem to be living for the some day, and under the direction of others.  It has been good, and bad, but it has been real.

However, it has also been a little lonely.  Especially after getting sick, meeting people of similar views hasn’t exactly been easy.  People who truly understand me would be rare enough, let alone now that just meeting any people has become rare.

And yet here I sit, typing into this page, knowing that I belong.  I have a real sense of belonging today.  Not to the society that exists on the surface.  To something much deeper.  That, is an amazing feeling.

Legalize

If you are not 21 or over, please leave this page for now.  Thank you.

Hello dear reader(s)!

And greetings from Washington state, one of the few states in the nation with legal recreational marijuana.  Oh, and one of the best economies in the nation.  A place where the biggest problems facing the people are traffic because the people in charge have decided to make life impossible for cars, while failing to replace those cars with adequate public transportation, and high housing prices because everybody and their brother’s sister’s mother’s father’s cousin’s former high school sweetheart wants to live here.  Is it because of the legal recreational marijuana?  Doubtful.  But that could be part of it.

I am not a major pothead.  Do I use it occasionally?  Yes.  It is a very effective anti-anxiety medication, and much safer than the Ativan I was on for so long.  It is an effective pain-killer.  It is the best anti-nausea medication I have ever used, and it is one hell of an appetite stimulant.  When I was fighting cancer, I went from 220 lbs to 140 lbs.  I was dying, and had no strength to attempt to live.  I could not eat from the GVHD in my throat, my digestive system issues (which still plague me), and the nausea.  Nothing they could give me would touch it.  Nothing.  Medical was legal here at the time.  I asked my doctor if she thought marijuana would help me, and she followed the DEA approved line of bullshit and told me it would be too dangerous and there wasn’t enough evidence that it would help.  (This is before cancer.gov admitted otherwise.)  So, without the card, I broke the law and obtained it illegally.  Trusting my supplier to give me the oil and only the oil in hopes it would help.

I got lucky.  My supplier was a stand-up person and the oil was as advertised (not in actual ads, or course).  And I tried it.  And at first, I got high as fuck and I hated it.  I almost stopped.  But I got hungry.  And the pain was less.  And I could eat again.  And pretty soon, the sharp high I was getting became a calming peaceful sensation.  I started to gain weight.  I started to be able to fight off all that was happening inside of me thanks to my newfound strength from the calories I wouldn’t have been able to take in otherwise.  The treatments actually began to work better, bolstered by a body able to help it fight.  And I started taking less pain meds.  I was on a ton of narcotics there for a while.  I started making a plan to draw off both the narcotics and the Ativan.  I stopped the narcotics cold.  Suffered three weeks of vicious withdrawals with the help of marijuana.  Stopped the Ativan in a safe taper.

Do you know what can happen when you stop Ativan (something they prescribe like candy until they decide you’ve been on it too long)?  You can die.  Do you know what can happen when you suddenly stop marijuana?  Um…not much.  I guess when I have and had an anxiety attack I kinda wished I had some with me.  The horror!!!!

My doctor didn’t want me to use marijuana for a valid reason, however.  With my weakened immune system, smoking marijuana can lead to fungal infections.  Up here, where I could obtain the oil (even if it was illegal without a medical card at the time), not an issue.  I don’t want to smoke anything.

But when I lived down in Reno, and friends had it?  Guess what I did once or twice?  And that fungal infection in my lungs?  It’s possible it could have been from that.  If it was legal there, when my friends were around the bonfire, I would have already been sucking on a candy made from the oil and it would have never happened.

Legalization brings safety.  Legalization brings knowledge of trusted supply.  Legalization brings an end to turf battles between cartels.  Legalization makes a life saving medicine available to all without much risk.  When I used during my cancer fight, I didn’t know what I was getting, but I needed something.  I was willing to try anything.  Anything.

I still use that medication occasionally. But now, I walk down the street, pass the sign waver (really, a sign waver for a store that sells a drug that people are currently in prison for, talk about surreal) and into the store.  I find the candies inside the case that are manufactured in inspected facilities, using marijuana that is only organically grown by state inspected and licensed farms, and then tell the person behind the counter what I would like.  Some people get the pieces of the plant, I get the edibles.  It is all sealed and safe for someone like me.  I pay for my candy, put the tin in my pocket (looks like a tin of breath mints) tip the budtender for handing them to me and working in an industry that is still unnecessarily dangerous due to cowboys from the DEA who still like to occasionally raid the places that provide a legal avenue of supply to something they simply could never stop anyway.  And I walk back down the street and go home.

My organic, vegan medicine comes with warning labels, sealed containers, and a supply more strictly enforced than the peanut butter you obtain from your grocery store.  I get 5 mg of THC in each candy.  (Most people take two, one is fine for me.)  I can choose the strain (I prefer a hybrid.)

Everything negatively associated with marijuana in studies is either correlation based on the underlying issues of those who need to self-medicate, or is associated with the fact it is illegal.  It is not a gateway.  For me, it actually got me off legal mediation that is far more dangerous and worse for society.  Do people who need to self medicate occasionally try other drugs?   Yes.  Is there anything to suggest that marijuana was the cause rather than someone who needs to medicate so badly with no legal means and a broken mental health system that they will try what they can?  Absolutely not.  Do people who use marijuana have a higher incidence of depression?  Sometimes.  Was it the marijuana?  Probably not.  They probably turned to marijuana to medicate the existing depression.  Can marijuana cause cancer as suggested by one single, unreplicated study that made headlines recently?  It might alter the DNA.  Might.  Can anyone find a single case of non-smoked marijuana that has led to cancer?  Anyone?

And since just about everything is a carcinogen, would you rather get cancer from something that helps you survive it?  Or from your shitty, polluted drinking water?

Now if you’ll excuse me, I have a tin of candy to use before I move to a place with draconian laws against this medicine, and I have a headache that needs medicating.