Two Tiny Tokes
Here's the deal. I am an ordinary middle-aged (yikes! when did that happen?) woman of middle America. I went to college during the seventies. Everyone I knew tried marijuana; most of us tried lots of other things as well. Very few of us got into trouble with those things and most of us went on to jobs, families and lives that did not include ongoing illicit drug use or jail.
Mostly those days and those drugs are ancient history to my friends and me. Like all-night keg parties and hitchhiking across South America, they were adventures that could have turned into disasters, but turned out to be rites of passage instead.
Everyone my age knew people who smoked a lot of marijuana. We knew people who smoked every day. We know people who never quit smoking a lot of it, every day. Sure, we've all seen some who didn't handle it well.
We've also seen some who got off of alcohol by using weed instead and cleaned up their lives. We've seen some who created successful projects and careers out of "pipe dreams" they had while stoned. We've seen some who got amazing amounts of hard work done using it. And some of those people are today running businesses and making piles of money and are considered upstanding members of the community and all that.
In private conversations, various software designers have told me they could not have done as well at their work without the use of cannabis, and that this is widely known and accepted as part of the reality of Silicon Valley success stories. But always in private conversations.
Back in college, I used to get speed from a friend of mine to clean house every couple of months or so, when I couldn't stand the mess anymore. It always felt a bit like cheating, but it worked and was much less unpleasant than my roommates' and my own frustration. It felt so good afterward, gazing around my space with pride and relief. Always, I would promise myself to keep it up and never have to do the heroic all-at-once clean up again. And always I would break that promise. Finally, that promise became a sorrowful guilt-ridden wish.
Years later, my brother told me he had been diagnosed with ADD and it had changed his life to get on medication. He was so certain I had the same problem, he sent me to the doctor to get tested. When the doctor prescribed a specific dosage of methamphetamine to be taken daily, I was able to make that kind of promise to myself and keep it.
It was like the proverbial flash of lightning; I saw what I had missed for years. I was self-medicating all those years ago, with almost the same thing I was now prescribed. It worked then, and it works now. The primary difference is that now I have the informed assistance of a medical doctor and much less shame and fear. There had been research done on this medicine and tests and improvements based on therapeutic evidence.
On a recent visit to California, I had a similar epiphany about marijuana. I was reminded of using weed at certain times in my menstrual cycle years ago. My hippie friends and I had figured out a complicated formula around timing and quantity of usage to alleviate cramps and migraines. One method worked on migraine when I caught it sneaking up on me, another when it was full-blown already. Certain means of use prevented cramping, some stopped cramps in the moment. And so on.
Nowadays, depression is a more common problem. I followed the protocols that Californian friends of mine had evolved and discovered I could address the depression without being stoned all the time. Two tiny tokes of certain strains lifted my spirits enough to go about my day without making me stoned, stupid or disorganized. I could enjoy having company and going out to social events.
It seems obvious that methamphetamine is a really dangerous drug; negative results of its misuse can be extreme, bad things can happen. When bad things happen as a result of meth, it includes road rage and auto accidents, people shooting family members, police chases and young athletes dying of heart attacks.