Motherhood, Marijuana and Me is part of a narrative series that MERRY JANE is honored to host. We are excited to unveil the many diverse faces of cannabis users through first hand experiences and stories from people not unlike ourselves. We are pushing aside old stereotypes and taking steps to normalize cannabis culture.
I am a 30-year-old mom, raising three kids, with a successful part-time job outside of the home, plus a blossoming freelance writing career that allows me to work from home; and I smoke marijuana almost every single day of the week.
Last year, my husband began using medical marijuana to manage his pain, and, at that point, I was struggling myself. I had just had an unplanned fourth child, and was reeling from the reckless emotions and rigorous responsibilities that come with having a baby. I decided to try medical marijuana to see if it could help improve my frequent migraines and occasionally debilitating back pain.
To give you a little background, about a year into becoming a full-time stay-at-home-mom, I knew the gig was not for me. My dreams included a career in something I was passionate about. For years, I had longed for motherhood to be that career, but it had never left me fulfilled to my core, no matter how I had thrown myself into the job. I have had to take time away from my kids to find the thing that would actually satisfy me. This, and many other outside factors, have strained my relationships with all of my children.
When I use cannabis, it brings relief to my physical pain, which helps me be a happier person, overall. I feel a deeper love for, and connection with, my children and husband that I have never experienced before. Using cannabis does not dull the person I am, it brings out the person, and mother, that I have always wanted to be.
After a few months of frequent use, our nine-year-old was the most curious about our new medication. She had some preconceived notions about smoking in general that made her a little averse to the whole idea the first time she noticed some of our paraphernalia. She asked me flat out what it was one time, and I was completely honest with her. We talked openly about its benefits, and pointed out the fun we had as a family when I was properly medicated. She has come to understand, and accept, that smoking marijuana for medicinal purposes is a natural way to relieve pain.
I try not to smoke around my children as much as possible, but my three-year-old saw me smoking in my bathroom when I forgot to lock the door once. She thought nothing of it, asked me an unrelated question, and went back to playing. I am hoping this means she, along with my one-year-old boy, will grow up to associate smoking marijuana as a positive way to relieve pain, and not the belligerent monster the media often makes marijuana out to be.
After rigorous research and testing of my own, the conclusions I have come to have been positive in every way. Cannabis has improved my life in countless ways and has helped me to bask in the little moments of joy that are so fleeting during the early years of motherhood. And no amount of stigma will change what I know.
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What do you tell your kids about your medical marijuana use?