The CBD Experiment

My wife suffers from autoimmune issues that end up expressing as RA. Inflammation, swelling, and pain flare up without warning. Hips, back, jaw, fingers, hands, feet, back. Nothing is immune from autoimmune problems.

It’s not a new issue for her, starting back in 1998. It wearies her, of course, and frustrates me. All I can do is support her, and that just doesn’t feel and sound like much.

She’s gone through meds but as anyone who is prescribed meds knows, everything has a side-effect. Many meds cause their own problems, burning through other organs, upsetting digestive systems, etc. In her mid-sixties, she’s been a vegetarian or vegan for over forty years, for many reasons. As her RA progressed, she eliminated more and more foods. She keeps a food journal. Fats were strenuously reduced. Salmon was embraced. We’ve always eaten steamed vegetables, particularly broccoli and brusse sprouts, and roasted asparagus, so we just stayed the course with those. Black beans form a large component of our meals. Alcohol was gone, but she was never much of a drinker. Dairy, especially cheese, which she loves, was eliminated. Tomatoes (another favorite) followed. Sugar. Then she kicked the meds because the side effects were too deleterious. She’s always been a staunch supporter of work outs and exercising and has been a jazzercise enthusiast and weightlifter for over forty years. She puts a lot into both and has been asked by the jazzercise instructor to fill in and lead classes.

That’s the thumbnail sketch. With her diet restrictions, off the meds, she’s been doing well, and even improving. Know how it is, though, right? Something flares up, causing pain and problems.

That brings us to CBDs.

Friends of mine are CBD advocates. They and their wives use CBD and other cannabidiols such as CBA and CBG to cope with their health issues, particularly inflammation and arthritis, sometimes in conjunction with THC, sometimes with mushrooms, but usually with wine or beer. All are pleased with the results. A few raved about CBD with THC to sleep at night. Edibles such as gummies, easily obtained and ingested, garnered particular praise.

So I collected info from friends regarding brands, habits, dosages, and side-effects, and brought that to my wife. She did further research. Purchases were made. She took her first, Wyld Blackberry 25 mg CBD gummies. “How was it?” I asked the next day.

“I couldn’t sleep,” she replied. “And I didn’t feel anything for the pain, swelling, or inflammation.” She showed me her crooked finger, with its red, swollen joint.

I have minor inflammation, mostly afflicting my intestines. While I address restoring my biome’s balance through diet and probiotics, I thought I’d give the CBD a try.

“How was it?” my wife asked the next day.

“Great. Felt almost an immediate relief. I was really impressed.”

A low growl came from my wife’s direction. I may have imagined that. She tried the CBD again that day and experienced the same results.

Research was pursued. She determined, she believes, that she’s one of those people who suffer increased anxiety from CBD, and no relief.

For the heck of it, we tried other gummy variations, and also gave CBG a try. Same results for her. Which just sucks, you know? Meanwhile, I thrived on it.

But that’s how our bodies are, individualistic and unequal, following paths and micro-paths which we don’t fully understand, sometimes forged by genetics, but also by small biological quirks. That’s part of the life experience, understanding what your body is doing, trying to understand why, struggling to address your own unique needs and issues. The wildest aspect is that the body is always changing, and the hunt for understanding doesn’t end until we cease to breathe.

And that is life.

The Sandwich Shop Dream

A phone was ringing. It was a late hour, but I thought it was Dad calling. I couldn’t get to the phone. I had my backpack on with my laptop and was heading for work.

I was in an airport, walking with others, none recognized from RL. We were gathered into a white side room to pick up our paychecks. They hadn’t been delivered on time to the regular place, and this was where we’d been sent to get them. We milled through with many others, then realized there were lines. People working with us weren’t in a line, so we formed one. We met with a rep, a tanned white male with a tired face. He was a friend of sorts but also upper management. He told us our paychecks were coming, that there’d been some issue, yada, yada, and the checks would be here later today.

‘Later today’ came. We returned to the room. Far fewer people were present. In fact, it was really only my group. The management friend never showed up. Neither did our checks. Disappointed, we left.

I got in line to have a sandwich made at a Subway shop. I’d been there many times before and the staff and I knew one another. The lines were long and so was the wait. When it was finally my turn, I ordered a sub sandwich only to be told that it was after five o’clock.

I looked at the clock; they were right, it was now a few minutes after five. I protested, because I’d been in line before five, and appealed to their sense of right. I appealed the time, too, arguing that it was just a few minutes after five, what difference could a few minutes make? And, I was a regular.

They would not make me a sandwich but offered me something else for free. I thought I’d get something for my wife, so, mollified, I started ordering. After a few minutes, the guy behind the counter said, “That’s just another sandwich.”

I realized that he was right. I started apologizing and held up a large quantity of paper money. I said, “I can pay for it.”

The counterman took all the sandwich ingredients and wordlessly slid them onto the floor in front of me. He then took all the money from my hand and drop it on top of the food on the floor. I protested again, “I forgot, I didn’t realize.” Then, seeing the futility of that effort, I picked up my money and rushed off into the airport to catch my flight. As I went, I kept telling myself, “I really forgot. I really did.”

Dream end

A Chaotic Dream

It began with me as a young man. I came into a situation where the atmosphere buzzed with chaos. We were outside. People were everywhere. It seemed like they were all carrying something and were on the run. I looked for signs about where to go: none. I tried talking to people, but all were rushing around like a children on a playground sugar high.

After some bit of this, I managed to see a door and went through it. In there was the information I sought about my role. I was given a tall stack of thick folders. Most were manila folders, but some were red, green, and blue. I started shuffling through them, flipping through pages, assimilating information.

I was to be given a presentation to prepare so that a decision could be made about something, but there was confusion about who was receiving the information and what outcome was desired. I was smiling as I went through the info. I was familiar with all of it. Within a short time, I’d tossed all the folders except two aside. One was a plain manila folder; the other was red with a red and white cover on it, with large block letters in red: 5774.

The 5774 information wasn’t needed for the moment, I decided. That would be used later. First, clean up the presentation. Make it. Get the decision. Then, after that, do the 5774 stuff.

Okay. With that clarified for myself, I pursued that course. A decision was made.

Around me was instantly calmer and more relaxed. People quit rushing. They smiled at one another and started talking.

Okay, good. I went to a car for a rest. Others were heading to a large celebration. I planned to join them but first needed rest.

Others came by to follow up on the decision. I was groggy with sleep and tried explaining to them that the information they wanted was in the 5774 folder. Just find it, and the messages and information inside that, and they’d be fine.

They went off. A young woman in a green 1950s era Chevy pickup truck picked me up and took me to the celebration. The grounds were rutted with mud, but it was like a huge carnival. After I was given some food, I discovered that I was entered in a competition there. Contestants were taken to a center stage. Questions were put up on a screen for them to answer. They were given ten questions. Whoever was most correct most often won.

I watched the other contestants as they were asked questions and failed and was immediately eager for my turn. I knew I was going to ace this thing because the questions were all from the 5774 folder. I knew it intimately.

My turn finally came. Well, in theory. An equipment malfunction put a halt to the proceedings. The dream ended with me in the green pickup, grinning, eager for my turn, certain that I was going to win.

Power of Eight Dream

I went through a period a few years ago where eight figured prominently in my dreams. Last night, it made a return in another superpower dream.

We were youngish people, nobody I recognized from RL. Eight of us, we seemed to be on the run at the beginning, fearful of being caught, though I don’t know who was chasing us or why. I’d just made a decision to leave them and was walking out when a young woman confronted me. I realized she was one of those chasing me. She told me that I wasn’t leaving, to go back into where I’d been, with the others, and threatened me with harm if I didn’t.

I refused, then tried advancing with intention of going around her and escaping. She raised her hands, spread her fingers and fired her magic crystals at me.

I blanched. I knew the crystals incapacitated people. They struck me.

And bounced off with no effect.

I was astonished. She was flabbergasted. She unleashed more of them. They did nothing as I walked toward her. “My powers don’t affect him,” she said with a shocked voice.

An older man stepped up from behind her. “I’ll stop him.”

He released a repelling wave at me that was supposed to shove me backwards. It had no effect. Raising my hands, I repelled him with his power, then did the same with her. Realizing they were defeated, they took off.

I hired back to the other seven, told them quicky what happened, and then urged them to see if they had powers. They did. I found that I had more powers than I realized. I had eight, in fact, including levitating.

We huddled up. I told them that we need to defend our country and that we should fly out to do it. We eight swore a vow that we would never give up nor surrender. Then we headed to the airport to get on a flight.

All flights were booked but we separating, we managed to slip onboard an aircraft. Five of the others were caught and escorted off, leaving just three of us. All the airline seats were bright red. The aircraft was amazingly wide, more like a large waiting area. I found a row of seats that ran parallel to the aisle. The third seat was empty so I jumped into it. One of my companions was in a row behind me. The attendants realized that he didn’t belong there and escorted him out.

A young male flight attendant approached me and asked if I’d like the meal that I’d ordered to be served now. I agreed to that. He brought me the meal on a tray but then withheld it, announcing, “I think I need to confirm who is supposed to get this meal.” I protested that it was mine, that I’d ordered it, but he went off and came back with the news that it belonged to someone else, and that it was included in their ticket, which cost $28,000. He then asked me for my ticket. I told him I didn’t have one but that I was on an important mission.

He told me that I had to leave the flight. I refused. He drew out a taser and said that if I didn’t leave, he would taser me. I told him, go ahead, it won’t hurt me.

Everyone around me was ordered back. He fired the taser. The barbed darts struck me and stayed in but I felt nothing. The FA was astonished. “It must not be working,” he said. I suggested that I fire it on him to see if it worked. Declining, he acquired another taser and shot me. Again, there was no effect. He said that it didn’t make sense that two would fail, and then asked me if I’d felt anything at all. I told him that I’d felt a little warm, that I had special powers, and that I was going to the other side of the world to defend my country. I levitated myself and then him to demonstrate some of my powers.

The attendant said that the other person didn’t want the meal because I had ordered it, and it was already made, so he would give it to me, if I still wanted it. I did, and he brought it to me on a dark red tray.

Dream end.

The Bread Dream

I was having dinner at my in-laws’ house. The small dining room was crowded with several tables, Maple wood, Americana design. The tables are full of food. It’s like Thanksgiving, Christmas, and Easter, al set up at once. The tables and chairs are crowded together, making walking around difficult. Careful paths must be followed.

I was making a plate up for my mother-in-law. In RL, she died several years ago. I’d filled half of a flowery China plate with food for her. I was walking around with the plate in my hand, looking for mashed potatoes. While looking for them, I kept finding huge stashes of bread. It was all variations available – rye loaves, sourdough, sliced, rolls, hamburger and hot dog buns, some small, fancy loaves, seeded loaves, long baguettes. Wholly unlike my RL in-laws who ate white hamburger and hot dog buns and Roman Meal bread. I never saw a baguette in their house in forty-five years of knowing them. The bread is everywhere, on the tables, under the tables, on the chairs, on the floor, in the corners. Some of it is bagged and some of it is loose.

She was on the other side of the room with her back to me. I said to her, “Wow, you sure do have a lot of bread. Why do you have so much bread?” An answer wasn’t given; I kept looking for the mashed potatoes.

Dream shift. It’s now night. My wife and I are in a car. We’re waiting to pick up something from my FIL. In RL, he passed away at the end of 1991. I’m waiting to back into a spot on the street. The street is wet. Before I can park where I want, I need to wait for a truck to pull out and leave, otherwise, I’ll block him in. I’m watching the truck in my mirror, muttering, “Come on, come on, what is taking so long?”

The truck finally pulls away. I back into the desired spot, and parallel park with amazing perfection. My FIL comes out. I open the trunk. I turn to see what he’s loading. I’m incredulous as I realize he’s putting bread in the trunk. I tell him, “Why do you need so much bread? You have a ton of the stuff at home.”

He closes the trunk and tells me to pull back to another location. I do that, and then get out to see how I’m parked. The dark car is perfectly parked again. My FIL comes out with his arms full and tells me to open the back door. I do; he puts more bread in it. I ask again, “Why do you want so much bread?”

Dream ends.

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