You’re Either For or Against Cannabis

That moment when you draw a line in the sand for you and your circle. Stand for something or fall for anything.

 

Finding Your Way to The Other Side of Trauma With Cannabis

As posted in Elevate

I wasn’t sure how to start this piece. How do I have a conversation about what happened on October 1? Should I say where I was? Seems insignificant in comparison to where the victims were. Do I say how I felt? How I feel isn’t as important as how the victims and their families feel.

Honestly, I am unsure if anything I write matters in comparison.

Almost a month ago, Las Vegas was involved in a mass shooting. This city and I will never be the same.

Two days after the shooting I boarded a plane to California to see my son. The timing couldn’t have been any better. I was overwhelmed with emotions and I needed to hug my son. As I sat on the plane I began to write my son a letter. It’s a habit I began the first time I flew away after he was born. It helps relieve my anxiety.

You see, I am Bipolar type 2. As a result of my mental illness, I suffer from mania from time to time. As I get older it gets worst. I am not sure when or why I get anxiety and or panic attacks, they just happen. Here I was on a plane to California two days after the nation’s deadliest mass shooting and the pilot had just announced we were going to be delayed due to Air Force One landing.

I felt myself panicking.

I took deep breaths and started talking myself down. Reminding myself that my anxiety was all in my mind. I was okay. Everything would be okay. My panic was increasing and I knew I had just a very few minutes left before I would be irrational. I jumped up and asked to use the restroom. The flight attended told me I had to be quick because they were sure we were going to be given the okay to take off soon.

I went into the restroom and looked at myself in the mirror. I told myself to calm down. Nothing was helping. Thankfully I carry my RELAX CBD vape pen around my neck at all times. I knew I was risking being thrown off the plane but I had to take the chance. I was overwhelmed and seconds away from a full-fledged panic attack. If you’ve never had a panic attack, for some, the symptoms mimic a heart attack.

I inhaled the vape three times and allowed myself to relax.

The flight attendant knocked on the door and said they had been given the okay to take off and I would need to take my seat. I sprayed my body spray before exiting and went to my seat. My anxiety had subsided before we had taken off. I relaxed and enjoyed my flight.

Many people are suffering from 1 October in a variety of ways. I have received an influx of questions regarding cannabis and its effects on PTSD, anxiety, and stress. Every time someone asks me about treating their ailments I ALWAYS recommend a CBD (cannabidiol) treatment. CBD is cannabis’ secret weapon and has significant medical benefits, but does not make people feel “stoned” and can actually counteract the psycho-activity of THC. The serum comes in many different forms — one less intrusive than the other. CBD has been known to send lifetime illnesses in remission and submission. The cannabinoid has been effective in dissolving blood clots, acts as a healing aid for skin issues and has anti-inflammatory properties.

For me, it takes the place of my anti-depressants and anxiety pills.

I am proud of how the Las Vegas community has come together and loved on each other. If I were able to, I would have offered EVERY SINGLE one of the victims and their families a week’s supply of CBD elixir. I know it would have aided in some relief as they dealt with what they had witnessed. We are #VegasStrong.

When Being the “ONLY” Isn’t a Win

As posted in elevatenv.com/blackabis

The weight of being THE ONLY is something I wake up to every day. The weight holds me accountable to being focused and intentional. It silently puts a responsibility on me to overachieve and to understand legislative issues and policy. To be the eyes and ears of my Blackness being included. To seek out opportunities for others in the future. To create conversation when necessary and write blogs that make people uncomfortable and think. This is the single most important time of my life and I know it.

It’s easy to dismiss someone who is writing about what they think is going on. It’s harder to dismiss someone who knows. I love what I do. I absolutely love taking care of patients and mentoring my staff. Even with all that gratification, I get my feelings hurt every day because of the color of my skin. My team has learned to brush it off but for me whenever it happens, it still stings.

In 2013 my mentor introduced me to the cannabis industry. It wasn’t long after that I became a cannabis patient. As a minister in an African American Holiness Church I struggled with coming out as a patient and industry leader. How could I tell my community that I was going to “sell drugs legally?” I was afraid I would let my pastor, peers and church down. I didn’t want to be labeled as a “ghetto hood rat” because I choose to use cannabis as treatment for my mental health issues. I didn’t want to let my community down by entering an industry known for incarcerating my people.

Every time I would show up to a City Council, County Commissioner or state meeting I would desperately scan the room hoping to catch a glimpse of others like me. Desiring to connect with someone who could empathize with what I was experiencing. While I haven’t found that community I am looking for, I am grateful to the women in my life who have supported and loved me while I cocooned.

I KNOW I am fortunate that I work in a black-owned establishment. It allows me the opportunity to be who I am freely. To practice and develop my #BLACKGIRLMAGIC openly. To challenge the system AND give voice when the platforms are made available. However, I am very much aware that I work in an industry where my African American owners are the ONLY African American-owned and funded dispensary in Nevada. This makes them part of the one percent of the industry’s African American ownership invested in the cannabis space – a space that is forecasted to have revenues in the $20-billion-dollar range by 2020.

I don’t want to work for THE ONLY African American dispensary in Nevada. I want to be part of a network of African American dispensary owners in Nevada. I don’t feel like I am winning as the “only.” I feel like an evangelist constantly looking for tent service where others like me are gathered on one accord. I started Blackabis because I hoped it would attract other African American men and women in the cannabis Industry. It is my beacon of light in a dark sea. Today we are few but I believe sooner than later we will be plenty.

Ministry & Marijuana “Part 1”

September 2013 I was introduced to the business of marijuana by my mentor. He just walked in one day and said, “we are going to go into the marijuana business and you need to study everything there is to know about marijuana.”
I’ve already told the story on how I thought that was crazy. The story I haven’t told is the story that includes me as a Minister of the Gospel.

 

In 2002 I rededicated my life to God. I instantly fell in love with My God. I mean head over heels. I was a wife and a mother at the time and the ONLY thing I wanted and desired was to be a Godly mother and Wife. Falling in love with God is an overwhelming feeling. I felt I had to tell everyone all about His love. I would stop people in the store hug them and tell them, “My God loves you and so do I!” I was what they would call a Radical Christian. Praying as a habit, study to show myself approved. At church whenever the doors were opened, followed my Pastor wherever he went and beat my Pastor giving. I associated Christ like behavior with being a faithful member. The Church was my responsibility as were their souls.

 
I was proud of all the titles I held in church; Youth pastor, Deaconess, Missionary, Chief Armor Bearer and Minister. I had earned each title with sacrifice, commitment and studying. See, when I fell in love with My God I was already a student of His word. I had been raised 4th generation COGIC (Church of God In Christ) and Mommy and Daddy didn’t play when it came to ensuring we were raised with the Wisdom of God. I quote scriptures by the Chapters not the verse. I was raised to “know His Word for Myself” and to not be dependent on others to interpret His word. When I committed to My God I came with a knowledge of what was Bible and what was Religion, but at the time of my life I needed the religion because I needed the discipline. I allowed myself to submit and to learn humility because I wanted to be loved by My God.

 
Yes, you read that right. I thought I had to earn His love. I hadn’t matured and or evolved to understand that My God loved me just the way I was. I hadn’t embraced His love, I was “found” yet I was still lost. I was preaching His word in Hopelessness. Losing my marriage which was my dream and remaining diligent in church. Struggling in my spirit. I was losing my dream and I was seeking after God’s love. I didn’t realize I already had it.
I was a foolish grown up child with gifts I hadn’t yet embraced. Full of information and no real wisdom. During all this I found out I was Bipolar Type 2 and as result of that I was suffering from depression and increasing Social Anxieties. By 2010 I was divorced and fully engaged In Ministry. Self-employed medicated and in Therapy. My medication was making me numb and my therapy was helping me heal my hurts but I would forever be ill, and medicated. I hated it!

 
It was in 2011 I fell in love with Ministry. I was worshipping under my God Brother and he is a BEAST when it comes to Ministry. He believes in being fully engaged in the people. If we had service 3 days a week, 2 of those services was prayer and outreach. Sunday was the staffs work day. We were there to serve the people. If we weren’t equipped that was too bad, you had all week to get it together. Serving under him made me develop a heart for service. I learned that Ministry was really about the people and my “issues” weren’t a hindrance to my service they were a value. I served “through” my issues. I was in love with Ministry and the gym, I didn’t need medication anymore… I was feeling powerful and in control. I was cured I thought.

 
In 2013, I joined a new church with a new Pastor. This Pastor wasn’t like any other Pastor I had ever met. He expounded on the Bible in a way I had never heard. It was like hearing the word of God for the first time. February 2013 I wasn’t lost anymore. That doesn’t mean I was sound, just means I was found.

 
I hadn’t taken my medication in 2 years and I was managing my issues with prayer, fasting and worship until I heard Pastor Ron Thomas preach. He reminded me that God isn’t a Genie and he doesn’t work in magic and IF I had an issue, I should seek help. I should take care of my mind and my health. He teaches that “YES” God can heal but what does that have to do with taking care of us. We should be good stewards of our temples and THEN God would honor his word. Message after message, service after service, I sat in the front seat of Pastor Thomas church and cried. He wasn’t just teaching God’s word, he was teaching LIFE. I had been lead to believe I couldn’t achieve fullness in Christ unless I submitted to the church. Pastor Thomas was teaching, “Am I the reason you’re coming to church?” “Who am I?” “I am NOT your God!?” “Serve your God the way HE has called you to serve” “Be free in Ministry” “He called me the same way he called you!” I was no longer being held a accountable to Religion but Ministry.

 
In 2014 I woke up!

 
I had been working on Marijuana as a project. Studying and developing plans but not fully engaged. I thought I had to choose between Ministry and my new project. How could I work in Ministry and believe in Marijuana? Religion had taught me that Marijuana is a sin but my research was proving that Marijuana was medicine.
I was intrigued and decided to become fully engaged. In 2014 I became a Medical Marijuana patient. I hadn’t taken western medicine in 3 years and no one knew it. I was silently battling depression and I was ready for relief. I stepped down from the Minister’s staff. I wasn’t sure how to explain to my open-minded, people loving Pastor that I was self-medicating. Not because he wouldn’t be caring but because I didn’t really know what to tell him. Was I self-medicating or just “getting high.”

 

 

One thing I knew for sure is I was hiding and ashamed. My history with religion was hurting me. I thought Religion was behind me and I had embraced “service”. How can I serve God’s people “high?” How could I medicate AND Minister? I was finding out that it wasn’t just Religion for me, it was a culture and medicating had its own culture. Which would I choose?

 

 

In 2015 we opened the Dispensary. October 10th 2015 I waited on my first patient. She had been suffering from Cancer and had been purchasing her marijuana on the streets. As I discussed the attributes of the 5 strains we had, I realized I wasn’t a pusher. She was ill and I was helping her choose her treatment. I listened to her story and met her need. I prayed with her, hugged her and she left. I could relate to her because I too was a patient and had been experiencing relief. Like her, I was no longer depressed and or felt hopeless. I had found a medication that I could choose AND didn’t have to take every day. I had chosen. I wanted BOTH! Ministry AND Marijuanabible-marijuana

PART 2…. Next Week. How I transitioned from Hiding to becoming an advocate of Marijuana

Marijuana Infused Massage Oil “REVIEW”

There has been a lot of questions about THC infused massage oils and whether or not they work and what can they effectively be used for?

Turns out you can use THC infused oils for just about anything. The formula I have been using was made by Evergreen Organix  and includes essential oils of  Lavender & Vanilla and Coconut oil. The fragrance is calming and sexy and the application isn’t oily.

I’ve used the oil for headaches, body aches, everyday calming care and nighttime treatment for relaxation and calming. It’s a massage oil in an easy application bottle and the aroma is heavenly.

Recently I used the oil as a therapy massage for a man I am seeing. He’s not a marijuana user but the massage oil posed as a non-intrusive product to use as an introduction to Cannabis. He works 2 full time jobs and is always on his feet.  I massaged his shoulders, back, legs and feet with the oil. He fell asleep during the massage and woke up ready for the day. His immediate response was, he had received many massages before and none were as soothing and therapeutic as the one he had received with the THC oil. He said it was calming and relieved his pain all at once.

I can honestly say, I use this oil EVERY DAY. Once I am out of the shower and getting ready for the day I rub the oil on my neck and shoulders to keep me focused and relaxed.

Retail cost is approx. $35

Marijuana Infused Massage oil