On October 17, 2018 – Canada legalized cannabis.
Recently, I got high again after 13 years and I want to tell you about it.
Firstly, legalizing cannabis is *the right thing to do*. It’s way less harmful than alcohol and you literally have to eat a shit tonne of it to overdose. The worst thing that’ll happen is you might get a bit fat from the munchies and maybe procrastinate all your great ideas away (or you can be like this guy and blow a wall out of your rental home trying make hash oil, loser).
This guy is NOT a typical weed user.
Honestly, weed never hurt anybody – I don’t reccomend it for growing minds because it can totally mess with your thought processes – the same reason I don’t reccomend any inebriants for teens because they’re already reality challenged; they don’t need ‘weed brain’ or alcohol decision-making being another hurdle in levelling up to prepare for game life.
So... "weed good". I'm a fan.
I was a chronic user in my 20’s.
Daily – like, come home from work, spark a fatty, routine. I’d say I was psychologically addicted to weed because I didn’t like being straight as much as I liked being high.
But that changed.
Therapy changed me. There was a moment years ago, when I smoked up in the ravine by where I lived and I was sorry that I was high. I was sorry that I wasn’t enjoying the experience of sitting in the middle of the creek on a rock while sober. I felt like I was missing out on what I really needed.
What I needed was to consciously have experiences in my life that were rooted in being sober. Mystical, magical – holistic and healing experiences that were sober based.
So I didn’t smoke, as much.
Oooh, you’re so gangsta. (Circa 1997). My younger self is embarrassing as fuck.
I still smoked weed – just not as much weed. Maybe once or twice during the week and of course, on weekends – it became a social thing, like having a few drinks with friends. There were always people around ready to smoke and watch a movie or play music and talk philosophy and the universe…
That was the best – a few friends and some weed and maybe a bit of beer or some wine and deep conversations about Life, the Universe, and Everything.
After a couple years of casual use I stopped being able to get high at allbecause I started getting paranoid.
It was terrible. It’s probably what it feels like to have a panic attack or anxiety.
Doom. Doom. Doom.
The fear that SOMETHING WAS TERRIBLY WRONG and because when I get high everything gets IMMENSE and COSMIC, the something that was terribly wrong was everything. It was a giant hole of suck that could only be managed by going outside and touching the grass or the trees.
That’s right. Only the touch of nature could make it better.
And it did.
Every single time… which is actually only twice because after 2 times of having THE FEAR and needing to leave the party and go outside and hug a tree, I figured laying off the illegal substances was probably right call.
Now it’s legal = Friday Night High
Keith has been asking me to smoke with him for 8 years. I’ve said I would, eventually… and all things came together under the umbrella of legalization.
Honestly – the quickest way to paranoid was allowing myself to think about cops showing up at the house and arresting everyone and taking my property for… smoking a joint? Okay – I know it’s ridiculous, but it would set me off, so legalization cleared a huge paranoia flag for me.
So I said “yes”.
Who doesn’t love the feeling of Friday night? The whole weekend stretches out before you as a 48 hours of “me time”. I love Friday nights. So I got high for the first time in 13 years on a Friday night.
Keith rolled a joint – no tobacco. Just weed (we had grown ourselves – which was also a huge thumbs up for my agreement. I knew this weed. I watched it grow and saved it from TWO uprootings and fed it and watered it and stood in the sunshine with it. I knew how I felt about it and how grateful I was for it’s contribution to my life.), which Keith let me light.
So I blessed it Le Chaim and sparked it and could barely get it going and coughed and it went out then started to canoe and Keith had to take over because I was ridiculous.
We grew good weed and I had 3 turns and maybe 6 pulls and I was FUCKED.
The garage was the most depressing place to be because if I stayed there I was going to start cleaning and NO ONE wanted that for Friday night high – so I went outside.
Holy Holy is the Holy Backyard
I could feel THE FEAR creeping up on me and I knew the only way to handle it was to ride it out. I love my life – my job and relationship and money are all stable and nurturing, so the only thing that was going to make me freak out was ignoring what was happening in my body – so I went with it.
Weed has always gotten me in touch with my body and what my body wanted was to have every bit of it yoga-stretched and moving.
I was flexing and dancing and moving like those ribbon dancer gymnasts – but not graceful, nope; imagine a middle aged fat woman galumping around her backyard dancing to the wind and talking to the trees. Then suddenly bent over crying deep grief tears because it’s autumn and everything is dying.
It’s all EPIC and UNIVERSAL for me on marijuana. (Coincidentally, I just heard Alan Cross talk about being high which shed some light on why this happens for me. THC inhibits activity in the hippocampus, which regulates short-term memory. This allows the user to be more fully in the NOW and bring more attention to the detail and perspective of the moment = EPIC & UNIVERSAL.)
It’s like a door opens to scale and my perspective becomes both infinitely large and infinitely small and everything MEANS SOMETHING.
It’s interesting and ridiculous. I was convinced that I could understand the state of the world through the most popular show listing on Netflix. Somehow there was truth there and I could figure it out if I just paid more attention.
I’m sure when I’m high that I’m having DEEP THOUGHTS.
“It’s just a cycle baby – death is just the beginning of something new.” Keith said from the garage doorway.
“YESSSSSSS,” I responded and point at him. “It’s all a CYCLE. Everything’s a CYCLE.”
I skip over to the garage door and whisper to Keith “You can’t lie to me when I’m high – I’ll knoooooooow.”
“No you won’t.” He responds, straight faced, deadly serious. “You still don’t know my secret power.”
Secret power? WUT?
That was a mistake. I followed him around for ten minutes asking him what his secret power is, why he had kept it from me all this time, had he always known he’d had a secret power, how did he use it day to day?
Of course he was kidding, but Lezley’s HIGH MIND wanted to know the truth behind the mystery. We’ve all got secret powers. I already know what Keith’s secret power is – I wanted to know what he thought it was.
Stop That Right Now
Keith was very uncomfortable with my reaction to weed.
“Don’t do that in public.” He said. Scorn. Derision.
Translation: You’re embarrassing me. Don’t do that in front of people I know.
“After you smoke more, you’ll get used to it and it won’t affect you like this as much.”
Translation: This is uncomfortable for me. Stop that right now.
I thought this was about being true to who you are – but it’s actually about something else
I initially wanted to share this story with you to talk about being true to your own weirdness and expressing yourself in the world the way that gives you the most joy – regardless of what the Debbie Downers and the Critical Keiths have to say or how you make other people uncomfortable with your shine.
You go ahead and shine. You dance for the trees and the birds and the wind and you cry for the death of it all in fall. You do you.
I’m right there with you.
So, I guess it’s partly about that. It’s also about the truth that’s held in our physical bodies that is so often denied. That’s really what Keith was objecting to; the enjoyment I was feeling in connecting to the truth and the needs of my physical body.
We are terrible slave masters to our bodies.
They do absolutely everything for us and we give them almost zero appreciation or love in return. We ignore their needs. We ignore their signals to eat and drink and rest and stretch and move and comfort. We are foreigners when it comes to translating the messages of our bodies – which is such a huge loss because our physical bodies hold all of our wisdom. This is also connected to our abuse and degradation of women and the Earth as a whole – but that’s another story.
Our bodies hold our wisdom for us until we are ready to be brave enough and attentive enough to feel it. Our bodies and our feelings are the gateway to healing, progress, and finding actual fulfillment and satisfaction in our lives.
Our minds alone will never touch the fullness of wisdom that is available through feeling our emotions and our bodies.
I’d forgotten that truth.
Smoking weed has ALWAYS brought me back into connection with my body and reminded me of the importance of doing that regularly.
Bodies and emotions are vulnerable to the most hurt. They are the most protected, armoured parts of ourselves – yet hold the greatest potential for the experience of being alive when we open up our connection with them.
Treat your body with kindness. Honour your feelings as wisdom. These are our best teachers.
Marijuana reminded me.