I smoke cannabis.

Unlike most of my generation I didn’t even try it until I was about twenty seven. It wasn’t as if I didn’t have access to it, because I sure as shit had access to it; not just at home but also at school. I was offered weed as early as eight years old by another eight year old, but unlike all those D.A.R.E. videos I watched these kids just kinda shrugged their shoulders and said something along the lines of “Cool, just don’t tell” and then went about their business.

I never did tell, but that’s besides the point; my whole life I’d had the opportunity to smoke and never took it. I’m not sure exactly what it was that stopped me, but if I had to venture a guess it was probably just guilt. Because I was drinking booze and smoking cigarettes in the ninth grade; that makes it sound like I was partying but no I had a few cigarettes, my mom caught me, I blabbed on my friends and we moved on. The booze was constant through high school which for some reason seemed safer than smoking weed, what a fool I was.

My parents smoke and grow and they have always been in the “Weed is medicine” camp and thank god for that. My dad has Arthritis in one hand and my mother has terrible knees from an injury she sustained while working for a theme park. Sure when they were young in the 70’s and 80’s they smoked for fun, but age does horrible things to our bodies and now that fun comes with necessity.

I had originally started smoking simply to combat my chronic migraines (fighting chronic with chronic) and I still very much use it for that. But it wasn’t until I started actually using it the same way I would advil or tylenol that I got the best effects (affects? Grammar and I are no longer friends kids). Learning the proper strains for my particular pain and my particular psychosis has made life so much easier and has allowed me the clarity to actually take care of business and get myself healthy.

Don’t get me wrong, I smoke it for fun too.

Weed makes me forget about the pain for a little bit and allows me to do my dishes and mop my floors. Weed lets me get to bed on time and stay at work all day. Weed reminds me to text my mother everyday. Weed lets me forget the panic and replaces it with calm.

Now some people find that because they have hayfever or the like they’re actually allergic to it, some people find that weed only manages to give them headaches and even others say all strains make them paranoid. This is because just like pills, weed reacts differently in everybody.

But it’s trial and error, sometimes those people find a strain that doesn’t do any of that and it’s a miracle, but other times they simply can not smoke weed. I can’t take penicillin, others can’t smoke Acapulco Gold.