Monday, December 7, 2009

Smoking Weed, Therapy and Blue Sky

According to this article on AlterNet, which my buddy Woody has posted over at Whisky, Dogs & Weed, women who smoke marijuana have a bigger Amygdala - that's a major part of our brains: The Secret to Legal Marijuana? Women

It's a long, informative article focusing primarily on medicinal marijuana. I have to say that my personal experience supports their conclusions since once I started smoking weed again a few years ago, I was able to stop taking psychopharmaceuticals after over 12 years. Since one of the women the article references was using marijuana for seizures, and since Depakote which is widely prescribed for manic depression was originally developed for Epileptics, I can see there could be a correlation.

Not that my shrink ever told me to smoke dope. Maybe I should suggest it to her. We're in that final phase out period of therapy where I'll be going every other week for a month or two, then that's all she wrote. After 16 years, it's a big fucking deal.

Last week, I told her that I had decided I'm as cured as I'm ever getting. To my surprise, she was fully supportive. Apparently, when you tell your shrink that you care about your financial security in the future, it proves you're more interested in where you're going than in your own personal psychodrama. I have to say, I left the session feeling like she's been wondering just how dang long it was going to take me to get to this point.

Walking through Central Park that day, I was noticing how different the landscape is since over 100 trees came down during that alarming storm we had over the summer.

The clean up efforts were massive at the time, but there are still some roots laying around to remind us of the destruction. It's sad to loose a bunch of old, beautiful trees. However, now there are big, open patches of sky. Sunlight streams into places that have only seen shade for years and years.
It just goes to show, once again, that a person can't step in the same river twice. Even though the park is different, and some favorite trees are missing, it's still a great place to be. And some things about it are better. Either way, the destruction of those trees has cleared the way for new growth, and some fine, smaller trees can finally get some sunlight.
I feel like I'm finally finding my place in the sun.
Does getting high help? Maybe. For me, smoking weed releases emotions that I keep bottled up during the regular work day. Not all the time - but when I've decided that I want to access and experience those feelings so that I can fully process and integrate them. Sometimes I just like to smoke weed and talk shit with Woody.

28 comments:

Lou said...

I indulge daily (though very moderately) and have recently been considering a break as I've never tried to do without for any period of time. Then I remember that it's the only time I truly relax and I trash the idea - it's probably the only thing keeping me sound of mind.

Well done for moving on from therapy - it sure is a big deal after 16 years.

Utah Savage said...

I too smoke daily. To most people who don't smoke pot to say you smoke daily seems excessive, but I'd say, like Lou here, that I'm a moderate smoker. At least compared to my younger days, when I smoked at least 10 joints a day, I'm a moderate smoker. I've told all my docs both therapist and Psychiatrist and internist and specialists. They all agree that if it were legal, they'd be prescribing it in patients like me.

So hows twitter?

O~ said...

And here I thought I was a little crazy for making the correlation between tea (pot) and my not being on meds for anxiety and depression any longer. Well that and knitting. Gosh its nice to know I'm not alone - and like y'all it doesn't take much...

As for the breaks... I personally find them beneficial from time to time to just clear my body. I know tea isn't addictive however the effect lightens with long term use (for me) and a break helps to re-enhance...

Again... that's just me...

Congratulations on your phase out! That is fabulous!!!

PENolan said...

I wish we could all sit around and smoke weed together. There has to be a way to arrange a video conference.

I've been thinking that since so much attention is focused on Afghanistan, health care reform and the economy, it might be a good time to get serious on legalizing weed. So many libertarians are pot smokers that I think we could build a coalition.

And since The Men are all argufying about their favorite topics, War and Money, we might could get it done without them noticing anything except a cute distraction - especially since the Conservative Christians are busily squelching gay marriage.

I should have time to work on this project between now and starting the MFA program in the fall. Maybe that's what Menopausal Stoners should be doing on Twitter. Something to consider.

Mauigirl said...

I used to smoke when I was younger and if it were legal I'd totally still be doing it. Maybe I could go off Prozac then...

I have a feeling eventually it will be at least somewhat legal ("medical" marijuana without strict rules...).

Gail said...

HI TRISH

"...I feel like I'm finally finding my place in the sun."

I love that you wrote/said that about yourself. I am smiling from ear to ear with and for you.

Love Gail
peace.....

Anonymous said...

Occasional herb = sanity.

Absolutely.

You're a breath of fresh air, hee hee ;-)

Woody (Tokin Librul/Rogue Scholar/ Helluvafella!) said...

Maui girl, when I went through a bad patch about 10 years ago--marriage fell apart, lost job, parents dying, etc--I availed myself of some counseling the University where I was teaching at the time.

After a session or two, they prescribed effexor for me. I took it for a month, mebbe two, but what I noticed was that it--well, something--was interfering with the "nice buzz" for which I have always (since '68, and btw there's still good weed on maui) indulged in vaporized tetra-hydra-cannabinol, so I stopped the effexor. Just quit it.

I told the doc at the next session that I was not gonna take 'em anymore. He asked why, and I told him exactly. He was a bit thunderstruck. He said that nobody'd ever copped to that before...

Weed's soooo much better fer ya than those 'inhibitors'...

jenmorrison said...

ha - I love the idea of a weed smoking video conference. Reminds me of the pot smoking scenes in That 70s Show - the camera moving from one conference member to the next!

PENolan said...

Yep - the more comments I read, the more I know we need to figure this one out

Anonymous said...

What a phenomenal article. Very thought-provoking and raises questions that haven't been considered. I get to wondering about the therapeutic use of the herb for mood disorders and to soften the effects of relentless stress.

If there's any breakthrough in attitudes about marijuana, it'll come through the mounting (and long historical) evidence that this plant -- what we call (a) "weed" -- is a powerful substance for well-being. I knew of a woman who had remitting MS ... She experienced horrible, agonizing muscle spasms and cramps. They were like charley-horses that just wouldn't quit. She was on scads of pharmaceuticals ... and then she tried the herb. Sweet, softening, moderating, silly relief. Laughing no longer caused piercing pain. She experienced more fluidity and ease in movement; her mind released some of its corrosive anxiety; food was being digested more easily and thoroughly because her bowels were no longer going into constant spasm. Better digestion; better elimination. She probably smoked about 1/2 a joint per day, taken in "sips" every few hours.

What could possibly be wrong with a natural substance that does all that for a person who has a torturous illness?

Liberality said...

I used to smoke but I always think that later on in life I will take it up again. I was bummed out when our newest personnel policy came out and it explicitly stated drug free workplace crap. I mean, I drink wine on occasion but I don't go to work after drinking. But if I did that would mean I have a dependency problem that needed attention not fired for not adhering to the personnel policy. Anyway, I have a glass of wine very rarely but usually in the evening before bed so that I can relax.

PENolan said...

It's all about responsible moderation.

I know there are very bad people involved in the drug trade, and crack and crystal make people crazy and stuff. That's not the same as some mature, peaceable folks relaxing with a libation or a reefer in the privacy of their own homes.
Or brownies. Or herb butter on thick slices of fresh bread. Or herb tea, actually. Weed Tea is pretty good when you mix it with blueberry juice and a touch of honey.

Vancouver Voyeur said...

Never been a smoker, it's all I can do to breathe, asthma and allergies. Oh and I finally got my Circle of Friends post up and put you on my sidebar. You're official!

PENolan said...

Thanks V.V.
I hope you had a little fun with it. I'm thinking it's time to start collecting recipes for friends who can't/prefer not to smoke.

Comrade Kevin said...

I smoked for years, but stopped about three or four years ago. It was completely interfering with my bipolar meds and by the end was producing panic attacks.

It was for the best. I have been much more stable since then.

Lisa said...

I think I've shared with you my thoughts on this. I don't smoke, but I don't see why you can't. It should be legalized already.

What I really wanted to say, though, was that I love that line, you never step into the same river twice. That's a great line and concept.

PENolan said...

re: weed
Everyone picks his/her own poison (if any). If weed were legal, I wouldn't be mentioning it at all.

As for stepping in the same river twice, there's somebody in particular I wish would buy into this concept, but he still won't talk to me. It really sucks.

intelliwench said...

Great article. There just are too many ways, I think, that politicos could screw up legal weed -- so I guess the thing to do is buy local ;-)

Mmmm...Wastycakes!

MRMacrum said...

Hooked up to your site through Yooper. Liked your Blog Title so I punched it up. Found this post in your favorites list and well here I am.

Great post about taking your own sanity in hand and doing what feels right for you. I partake in some bud on occasion and have done so for over 40 years now. The one thing I noticed is when I am depressed, I do not want to smoke any weed. When I feel like smoking, whether I do or not, I am usually on the higher end of the manic roller coaster that is my life.

Anyway, I will be back. Thanks for the excellent read.

dennis hodgson said...

I've smoked huge amounts of cannabis for 40 years, but this winter I decided to have a sabbatical because it was fucking up my short-term memory. However, the sabbatical ends on Monday, when my friend has promised to produce some "Blowfish", a variety I've not tried before. My usual favourites are "Northern Lights" (indica) and "AK-47" (sativa).

I don't post cannabis stories on my own blog, because some of my readers know me personally, but I did write about my experiences with LSD in the early 1970s:

http://dennishodgson.blogspot.com/2009/12/drugs-and-religious-experience.html

Carol said...

I smoke every morning and evening, of course I would never mention that to anyone :) and the best part I am going thru menopause and my body is doing some weird stuff.

Anonymous said...

I started smoking pot in peri-menopause...it is the only thing that helps my concentration and
crabbiness. I am too foul right now and cant focus otherwise. It is a blessing. I take breaks.
Then I go back...Ive lost weight too. Love the stuff...great blog.

PENolan said...

Glad you found your way over here. Come back any time.

Cam said...

Ha! I googled "perimenopausal and pot" and I found this editorial. I know my body is changing and my hormones, age and going through the busy stage of life (i.e marriage, kids, job) are causing headaches and anxiety.

I used to smoke daily in my 20s and then as life goes 3-4 times a year. I've tried red wine, which helped a little, but pot can relax you without making you numb and lucky for me I'm entering into the next cycle of life where pot can work in my routine again.

Yes, pot should be legal without a doubt. Legal or no though I still wouldn't smoke in front or with kids. Not really sure why...

I am grateful that there is mass consciousness of women who can come together and still share our findings in life. Maybe we can resurrect the secret society of home economics one day.

Peace,
Camk10

PENolan said...

Secret Society of Home Economists?
I'm down with that, Cam.
Glad you found your way over here

Mary Kathryn Simon said...

This thread of comments from 2009-2015 is amazing...
here I write from the state of CT, where I relocated
and may use medical cannabis. The way usage is described
in all the comments is exactly what folks are using medical cannabis for.
Ya'll KNEW instinctively. Put THAT in your bong/vape
and inhale it!
And yes, the freedom of medical cannabis is wonderful. and has helped
me reduce and eliminate ALL other meds I have been prescribed.
Facts are facts.
Peace.

Mary Kathryn Simon said...

RE: The Secret Society of Home Economists...
thanks Gd it's not so secret anymore.
I go to CannaEd at my dispensary and have
learned some amazing recipes and more.
I hate to say it, but there is a celebrity chef
movement on this...I won't say who our
chef/teacher is...but who else would have enough capital
to invest in this legal medical cannabis
situation?

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