Just got back from our mile-long-round-trip walk to the mailbox — that’s a sign of how well I’m feeling. It’s my chemo-free week and if I didn’t know I had cancer I’d never guess.
My CT scan is Tuesday and I’ll let you know how it goes after I see my oncologist for feedback on Friday.
In the meantime, life is carrying on. Charles was able to go on a five-day business trip without anyone worrying; Sarah was here with me and there were no concerns that something might go wrong or that I was too ill to be left for a while. As you might imagine, this feels awesome to all of us.
So one thing I’ve been exploring, being in a state where marijuana has been legal for six years, is to what extent CBD and THC might be helpful in alleviating the side effects of chemo. (There are theories that CBD even kills tumor cells but the FDA hasn’t rubber-stamped that yet.)
My first foray included just CBD. For the unfamiliar, that is the part of marijuana (or plain hemp) that does not make you high. It comes in varying strengths, either in an oil-based tincture or as capsules. This helped with the nausea somewhat but when I was feeling yucky, the combination of the marijuana taste and the oily feeling in my mouth grossed me out. I tried flavored CBD but that was even worse. 🤢
So when a friend of mine, whose boyfriend (a physician and medical professor) endorses a brand of CBD/THC products called Verra, offered me a free sample, I said, “Sure!” You spray this stuff under your tongue and it tastes like peppermint, so yum. The amount of THC in one spray is only 1.25 mg and the recommended dose is two sprays. It has a slightly mellowing effect (nice for the night before chemo, when my anxiety starts rising), reduces nausea AND makes me a little bit more hungry — not the munchies, exactly, but it does help me get more calories in when I’m feeling green.
But the other day I ran out of that stuff (it’s a pretty small container) and happened to be in Nederland, Colorado, where all the hippies lived/still live and you could get pot any day of the past few decades. There are now four ‘dispensaries’ in this tiny town and I stopped into the Silver Stem to see if they had something similar to my spray. Unfortunately they did not, but they had a couple of other things I thought I’d try. One is another oil-based tincture flavored with cinnamon oil, which I might like, and the other is an “edible” — a sort of semi-hard lozenge with 10 mg of THC, which didn’t sound like much. BUT, OMG, did it make me feel stoned!
I was watching an episode of Queer Eye (❤️) with Sarah when I realized I was starting to get a buzz. At first it was just a more mellow feeling, but within an hour or so everything I did felt like it was happening in slow motion under water. I had to put new pillow cases on the bed and it felt like it took half an hour! The two minutes it took my electric toothbrush to shut off felt like AGES. I had a thought about something that worried me for a second and when I tried to understand what was so worrying about it I couldn’t even remember what it was. That cracked me up. 😆 I tried describing this whole thing to Charles but my mouth wasn’t working very well and he was exhausted so I gave up. Then I settled in to fall asleep, which was hard because I had the munchies. I finally drifted off.
This might sound fun to you, but I actually don’t like feeling high! Especially, I realized, now that life feels so damn precious. I much prefer the acute awareness of what’s going on, especially when I’m spending time with the people I love. From now on I think I’ll stick with CBD or a couple of sprays of Verra when I get some more.
Anybody want the remaining nine edibles?