Last year was the first time I ever tried cannabis.
Despite having friends in college who smoked regularly, I wasn’t interested.
My closest friends were drinkers so I followed suit, especially since alcohol is such a big deal in my family. But it didn’t take long for me to start seeing some of the issues with regular alcohol use. One of my uncles passed away from cirrhosis in my last year of undergraduate school. It was a serious shock to the family, although we all should have expected it in retrospect considering how out of control he was during the last few years of his life. In addition to this, my dad was spiralling out of control in his life. When I nearly missed a final exam due to waking up late after a night of heavy drinking, I decided to quit altogether. For the next few years of my life I had no other substances besides coffee. But things got complicated last year when I injured myself skiing and was in the hospital for a few weeks. After that I went home and did physical therapy for the following two months. I didn’t want to take opiate pain medicine, but I needed something more than ibuprofen or acetaminophen for the aggressive pain. That’s why I decided to give marijuana a chance. I live in a state with legal recreational cannabis, and any over the age 21 can walk into a marijuana store and buy products off the shelf. Cannabis helped me function through the day without getting immobilized with severe pain.