Philippa’s Journey with Cannabis Part 2
I had a one more brush with cannabis when I was about 25 before I started consuming on a regular basis in my thirties. I was with some band mates after a gig. We were watching Season 3 Episode 1 of Red Dwarf called Backwards. I had never seen it before and found it absolutely hilarious and bought Season 3 on video so I could watch it again. Unfortunately, having never seen it before (consuming cannabis) and although I still found it funny it was never quite as funny again.
My next encounter with cannabis was when I was about 32 and I had met a new friend (let’s call them Exhibit B) we were having great fun going out to live gigs (2 on a Friday, 2 on a Saturday & 2 on a Sunday plus I was going to jam nights & other gigs through the week). We were having after gig parties at various friends houses and yes Cannabis did come into play. But I started consuming on a regular basis which started to have some consequences both good and bad. The bad was memories of childhood psychological trauma. I was having panic attacks and feeling really depressed, because I was re-living the trauma. The good was that I was becoming more aware of how to help myself which in turn has helped others I hope.
I find the media headlines “my child committed suicide because of cannabis” really sad and brought about because of a lack of understanding due to prohibition. If we had substantially better mental health services in this country and a fully functional medical cannabis service provided by the NHS these suicides may not happen at all. Now I’m not a qualified psychologist, but I have studied a little and read many books on the subject, having gone through this & many other experiences since my first memories started to form, I feel that I have some insight into this subject.
I have been told that I should do a degree in psychology & go work as a social worker. That was never the plan. The plan was to get my grade 8 singing exam and go to The Guildhall School of Music and Drama to do a music therapy course. But I fell ill in June 2006 after a gynaecological procedure and Mirena coil fitting (sorry if this is TMI). I could barely walk and had no idea that it was the hormone progesterone that was causing all my issues. I finally found out what was wrong in March 2009. I was diagnosed with Hypermobility Syndrome (now called Hypermobility Spectrum disorder or Hypemobile type Ehlers Danlos Syndrome) this condition is exacerbated by the hormone progesterone and relaxin .
I had been consuming cannabis on and off for quite sometime (about 20 years as things stand now) which did help with some of the pains I experience, but was no where near the dose I would require to get the full effect that i required. I get pains that feel like I am being stabbed with a sharp stabbing instrument that has been heated to a high temperature and hooked up to the electricity supply. It is not a very nice pain at all. Cannabis keeps this pain at bay but it would sometimes break through because I would not have been on the correct dose or the correct strain whilst I was not on a medical prescription.
You see sourcing on the black market is not like going to a sweet shop where you can pick and choose, you get what you are given. Which is not great because some strains don’t suit me & this is the same for everyone. (More on Strains in a future post). I will be forever grateful to those people that put themselves at risk to supply me with this medication. It’s not all about the violence I myself have never seen any as far as cannabis is concerned and I have 20 years experience of the black market.
You already know about my work with the Green Party, but when it came to the 2017 election before I had been selected I confided in someone that I consume cannabis. As I didn’t want this to compromise the Green Party should it be made public. To my surprise the response was more than reasonable and I was reassured that it would be managed should it be made public. 2 years later the Green Party released their drug policy (which I haven’t quite memorised yet) (I might have to put it to music lol).
That pretty much brings us up to date but just to say that I decided to seek out a legal cannabis prescription through the Project Twenty 21 service in 2021. Which is proving to be a very positive experience for the most part. You will find out more in my next post.