Mental Wallaby, MS Reclamation, Uncategorized

Trying CBD Again 👍

I’ve tried CBD before. Being specific, I’ve tried THC-free CBD isolate and a cheap CBD extract, I think it was with the ACDC strain (historically any chance I had for ACDC I took it, since you know, ACϟDC. Probably not the soundest medical decision.)

Last week after Panic Day 2020, I had scheduled an appointment with my GP. Also spoke with my therapist and shot my neurologist a message. A friend recommended I try Lexapro for the anxiety, which I was on board for, up until my anxiety increased at the thought of taking another SSRI. I had a bad experience with Paxil in my 20s, one I very specifically prefer not to revisit. Looking into antidepressants that are good for MS patients with anxiety, I decided to ask after Effexor, and both my neurologist and therapist were on board. I waited as I wanted the final ruling decision to be my GP.

By Saturday night I had grown increasingly anxious about Effexor, polypharmacy, and everything that goes with that. I don’t think I have a chemical imbalance, I know I have an anxiety disorder, and that I’m trapped in my house without my friends/family to help me remember outside isn’t evil and coming inside to get me.

I’m not sure how I came around to it, but I ended up in a YouTube trap of other people with chronic disease and anxiety talking about medical cannabis. My position is generally no alcohol, no weed, no drugs of any kind, caffeine sure, I love feeding the anxiety first thing in the morning. I just hate feeling other. A moderate level of anxiety I can live with, feeling incapable of removing myself from the couch (*cough*Benzos*cough*) is something wholly different.

By Sunday afternoon I had a delivery for a 1oz bottle of Aunt Zelda’s Extra Strength CBD Infusion.

Specs:

  • 29mg/mL CBD
  • 1.5mg/mL THC
  • 1.2mg/mL CBC
  • .8mg/mL CBDA
  • .5mg/mL CBG
  • Cultivar: The Gift
  • Beta-myrcene is the dominant terpene
  • For patients requiring high doses of CBD

I’ve been recommended medical cannabis/CBD by Doctors on several occasions, but I’ve always been apprehensive. I have friends and family that look down on it and for a while at least one whose opinion mattered so much to me I’d have harmed myself before risking how he viewed me. Since he’s changed his position which is helpful, but the rest I’ve decided it’s not worth the effort to appease them. I believe cannabis has medicinal benefits, and recreationally it’s no worse than alcohol. I doubt my saying so much would change any minds, but if it’s something that might be helpful, I think it’s worth a shot, particularly given its relatively low risk.

I might not be doing this right, I would prefer to start this with a consult. I am not. It’s expensive, I’m not dead broke but I have to be mindful right now (pandemic), and I’m pretty comfortable with trial and error in this instance. I’m skeptical, not thinking it won’t help at all, only how much it can help.

Day 1: Starting with .25ml. It’s a “low dose” per all my Google-fu, but this is Extra Strength, the dispensary website said to start with one drop. .25ml is supposed to be equivalent to five drops. Taking it sublingually. It anesthetized my mouth. I’m definitely in the camp of “I do not enjoy this scent or flavor”, and it lived with me awhile.

I skipped caffeine by accident and didn’t notice until late evening when a headache set in. Either the CBD gave me energy and staved off the deprivation headache, or I just got really lucky. Curious. I felt weirdly calmer, but I’m not sure if it were psychosomatic or simply not having anything trigger my anxiety.

Day 2: Started anxious before CBD, dreading an afternoon call/meeting. Took CBD, felt a little funky, unfocused, perhaps combining CBD and Modafinil (it’s one of those days) wasn’t a great choice. Will probably test this again in the future, either deliberately or through forgetfulness. The call itself went pretty well, felt like I had significantly less anxiety. Simultaneously, I still felt awkward and stumbled over my words, I just wasn’t apprehensive about it, and I wasn’t ruminating after the call. “It’s whatever.”

Mind you, “it’s whatever” is really huge for me. Thinking 5 drops is a little much at once with the level of this concentrate, going to split the dose.

Day 3: I didn’t take Modafinil despite still feeling like I could really use it, and the CBD felt like it knocked me on my ass. I felt sleepy almost all day. Actually sleepy. This is also very different in that I’ll usually feel tired, never like it’s time to sleep now. When I nap it’s out of a different kind of exhaustion. Feeling a bit torn on the Modafinil vs CBD situation, I think it’s going to take some trial and error to figure out what works best in this scenario. This day just ended in a lot of daytime napping with adherence to my 5 am bedtime. I picked up a TaoTronics Light Therapy Lamp to try to fix my circadian situation.

Day 4: OKAY I got back on Modafinil for the day. Yeah, I know what I said before. Dividing my dose across the day seemed to negate the sleepytime effects, and left me feeling a bit sharper but with the same improvements. I still strongly dislike the flavor, but I think it’s really helping. Concentrating is a little easier, I managed to get a lot of cleaning out of the way. Much less anxiety and feeling much more positive. Three drops, twice a day, morning and late evening. Didn’t need a nap, managed to be in bed by 4am. Ugh. Thinking less CBD is more, and Modafinil may be dramatically affected if the dose is too high? I suspect this is going to continue to be annoying.

Loving the lightbox.

Days thereafter… still in the three drops camp. It seemed like an obscenely small amount, though after some reading (and more et al.), what I’m taking is full-spectrum and seems to require significantly lower dosages than isolate. (There’s this thing called the entourage effect I’ve been semi-aware of, apparently working here.) I absolutely believe this is helping, particularly as I’ve not been terrified of leaving my house. It’s not perfect, I feel maybe closer to pre-pandemic levels of anxiety, but that’s the level I know what to do with.

I  didn’t expect the benefits to be immediate, since that hasn’t really been my experience with CBD before. Being fair I’ve never tried something so targeted or strong before either. I think I’ll keep at this for a while and see how it goes. At least all the stoner/sludge metal I’m into feels appropriate.

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