Hello, my name is Windi and I am what some of you would call a stoner, but I prefer to be called a cannabis patient, cannabis connoisseur , cannabis enthusiast, cannabis advocate, cannabis consultant, cannabis lifestylist, but stoner doesn’t offend me one bit because yes, I smoke pot and am very proud of it. It has saved my life and the lives of others that I love dearly. I have been around pot all my life. I have memories of being a joint passer as a small child at parties. I remember dad handing me the joint and telling me to go take it to so and so, but don’t smoke it. No big surprise that my parents divorced when I was eight. Then I got this period of straight edge normalcy for my impressionable years; thank you mom for giving me some kind of parental guidance because life got a bit weird after I left.
Around sixteen I thought it would be wise to leave my mom’s home and go and reunite with my father, who by the way made no attempt at contacting me for over seven years. Hindsight is everything isn’t it? Now I know I said I was around some parties but what I came into when living with my father was not the kind of parties I really wanted to be involved in. My father, rest in peace, taught me a lot about the repercussions of every other drug, meth, cocaine, acid, LSD, PCP and all the other not so fun shit. He did still smoke pot and as far as I could tell the pot was not his problem. As a matter of fact, that whole side of the family seemed to smoke pot, but they fell into the other drugs, so I was leery of anything that was considered “drugs” and didn’t feel any need to try anything. My uncle, who I would call a cannabis connoisseur, grew pot when I lived with my dad and I went with him to a couple of his houses and instantly fell in love with the plants. I remember saying in my head that it is just a plant. It isn’t garbage chemicals from under the sink mashed together; it is just a beautiful fuckin’ plant.
Curiosity was getting me, so I started hanging out with my uncle, aunt and cousins so I could see how just pot affected their lives, and you know what? It was the most normal life I had gotten so far. This is where I got my start with admiring and getting to know this plant and her effects. I remember taking my first bong hit. I had come home from school, I believe it was my junior year of high school—not certain because it has been awhile, anyways… I lived in one of my uncle’s grow houses; yeah, it sounds crazy, but trust me I loved it and I felt totally at home and safe. Remember, I see it as just a plant. On my living room table sat a bong and a small bud. I studied it for a long time remembering watching how everyone else used the thing and finally was like, just do it already, it isn’t going to kill you. I took my first bong hit and held it until it was ghost, laid back on the sofa and that is when I heard it… silence. It shut my mind down… I don’t mean that in a bad way at all… you know, when your head just races and overthinks and next thing you know you have thought of everything, but have done nothing… well… the bong hit brought me a bit of focus. I finished that bowl, got my stuff done for the day and cannabis became my friend and companion from then on.
Fast forward to my twenties: shitty marriage, wonderful baby girl, smoked the heck out of pot for anxiety. Unfortunately, I had to quit due to leaving said shitty marriage so I could rebuild and survive. I actually quit cold turkey with no issues for thirteen years—well, kind of no issues, I unfortunately took to drinking instead because it was legal and more acceptable, which is bullshit, to be honest.
Second marriage was drunken bliss, beautiful baby boy this time. I had gotten my associate's in Criminal Justice and worked as a sex offender counselor, caretaker in a halfway house for released felons, and worked in an immigration detention center. I learned lots of horrible lessons from my choice in careers and decided none of that was for me, and trust me, the inmates aren’t the only fucked up thing you can run across in the law enforcement industry.
Toward the end of my second marriage, I began to smoke pot again, but not without waiting for lightning to strike me. Right before I left my first shitty marriage, I had gotten a job as a school bus driver and was already planning behind the scenes to run away with my daughter back to Washington to be safe. I had been saving money and had a plan in motion that I was going to leave during spring break to my mom’s house and then transfer to drive up there and never go back. One weekend of being weak, I took one hit off a joint on a Saturday night, and Monday I was rear ended while in my school bus—and of course, if you hold a C.D.L. there is an automatic alcohol/drug test, especially if one of the vehicles was totaled. I cried all the way to the pee test, my boss thought it was because of being shook up from being hit; no, I was destroyed because now I was going to lose my job and have to stay with this asshole and can’t escape. So, while waiting for the test results, I got a few days off with pay, and while being at home and wishing for anything in the world, I wished that my results would be lost and I didn’t lose my job because my baby girl and I needed to get the heck out of here, and that I would never touch pot again if that is what it takes, because I wanted to be free more than high. One week later, my boss called and said that I could come back to work because the lab lost my paperwork and due to the circumstances I could not be retested. A huge sigh and, yeah, it came across as a bit creepy, but that’s why I was waiting for lightning to strike with my first hit back. Guess what? No lightning!
In March of 2009 my soul mate and I came together; third time is a charm, right? I decided to get my Medicinal Cannabis Authorization and try this dispensary shopping thing because it seems pretty cool to be able to just go to the store now and buy weed. Now, don’t get it twisted, it was pretty darn cool to have that option, but honestly when you use cannabis like we use cannabis, going to the store isn’t very cost effective; after a learning a lot more about the cannabis industry in general, it began to seem that growing our own would be the way to go. My husband has been growing our medicine for years now and there is nobody I would rather trust then him. I use cannabis for my health. I was diagnosed with cervical spinal stenosis, lower lumbar stenosis, disc degeneration; basically great outside, organs are fabulous, but my foundation is shot to shit and cannabis helps me with the pain. It allows me to live a life I want. If I was to take all those pills they prescribed me, I would just be a doped up zombie and would not even be able to tell my tale.
Through my years with cannabis I have seen a few negatives, but I have witnessed many, many, many positives from the use of cannabis in someone else’s life. I watched it heal drug addicts. I have watched it give a woman her life back off prescription drugs. I have witnessed it giving light to cancer patients that were in pain. I live cannabis. Cannabis is and always will be a part of my life.
I want to share my life with you and change the stigma that surrounds such a beautiful flower because at the end of the day… it really is just a plant.