May 2nd, 2019
How I faced mine – Part 2
The follow-up – what happens now after you’ve survived your panic attack.
I’m still figuring this part out, but for me, the most important step was to acknowledge and understand what my triggers were and being completely open and honest about them. For a little while, I was still experiencing shame and embarrassment about my episode and admitting what my stressors were.
After this experience, I knew that other than reevaluating my life in every aspect, I also had to face my anxiety and figure out a way to manage it in order to avoid having another episode. After talking to my support circle (can never thank this group enough!) I realized what my sinking ship was and I was able to reach for that life raft. And a big part of that life raft was cannabis. It really helped me combat the negative things that were affecting my mental state and helped me take back control of what made me happy.
These are some of the things that cannabis helped me with that I didn’t even know I needed help with.
i. Sleep – I was working long hours on very little sleep
It’s no surprise that cannabis can be used as a sleep aid, though I’m never one to admit that I ever have trouble sleeping. I’d actually go as far to say that one of my best personal talents is sleeping. However, sleeping with a dose of cannabis in my system really brings a whole new level to sleep that I never realized I could hit. It’s hard to explain unless you’ve experienced it, but if I were to put it into words, its like my mind and body really falls into a deep slumber for a few hours. A sleep session of four to five hours can feel like eight to ten!
My cannabis sleep aid – these THC concentrated edible gummies.
ii. Sessions of ‘focused relaxation’ – I was always anxious, like an email, I forgot to send
At times, I need help with drowning out the ‘noise’ and really focus on relaxing, cannabis has definitely been able to help hone in on that. I know it can sound silly that I need cannabis to help with relaxing, but I kid you not, it’s a thing! When was the last time you actually relaxed? Without any distractions and really focused on that Netflix series or the book you can’t seem to finish or even just yourself, without checking your phone and all of the other devices that we are wired into. Call it ‘millennial age whatever’, but cannabis really relaxes me and helps to control my anxiety by drowning out all of the distractions around me. I can stare up at the ceiling with nothing but silence as my company for a little while and walk away feeling my happiest! That’s the real way to unplug from the world without going AWOL – call it a meditation if you will.
My cannabis relaxation aid – this CBD Tincture
iii. Just pure joy and laughter – I kept forgetting about having fun and smiling
I’m sure everyone can agree that life can be a very stressful and challenging endeavour, and it can be difficult to remember how important it is to laugh and smile. It’s such a powerful part of exuding physical happiness and cannabis can definitively make the simplest things seem like the funniest. I recall one night where I had some brownies with a girlfriend and I don’t even remember what we were talking about, I only recall laughing super loud about it while we were waiting for the subway. The memory still makes me smile (smiling right now as I write this!). Would it have been just as funny without cannabis? Probably. But would we have laughed as loudly and freely? Probably not. If cannabis can bring such a loud undeniable sense of happiness, how can this not be a great thing?
Cannabis really helped to reinforce that zero-fucks-given mentally that I needed to move forward and really helped me polish my need for sleep, relaxation, and general laughter. I have incorporated cannabis into my life responsibly and happily, though it’s still an everyday learning process that I am doing without any regret!
This may not be the best way for recovery, and I don’t know what the best way even is, but this is part of my recovery and it’s a slow process and is different for everyone. Running away did not help my mental state, because all I did was wonder about what my actions would do to my reputation and I was constantly worried about what people thought of me. But the point of this is to realize that your mental health has nothing to do with anybody but yourself and you do not need anyone’s opinions to validate your recovery unless they have every intention to help you.
Be Blunt, Be B.A.E., just B.