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 One Who Left

I shall miss his morning greetings

Rubbing his head against me

As I sit on the toilet

Or sitting at my feet and providing me his views

As I make my first cup of coffee

His visits with me as I’m pulling weeds and cutting the grass

Answering his call as he requested the door be opened for his egress

And ingress

And egress

And ingress

It won’t be the same

Being able to move without a large black haus pantera

Lying at my feet as I type

I’ll forever see him fleeing for safety

Moving his big body on his tiny feet

Whenever someone knocked on the door

Or people started talking on Zoom

I’ll always feel special

That he chose to spend his time with me

Permitting me to pet his head and scratch his ears

Without him scratching my hand

Letting me feed him bits of my sandwiches

Pieces of my chicken

Or indulging him with tuna

He made it all a challenge

With his fierce and independent manner

A challenge I would accept again and again

To see that sweet black face

Triangular with triangle ears

And black and white whiskers

Looking up at me and saying,

“Meow.”

Thursday’s Theme Music

A Steve McQueen sort of quiet cool reigns today, Thursday, March 24, 2022. The sun spit some rays into the sky at 7:08 AM. Light came up but warmth is still to follow. We’re sitting at 47 F but are expecting a high of 74. Hazy blue rules over us, with a few larger clouds peeking around the ridges but it looks like we’re set for a day of sunshine. Sunset comes at 7:28 PM.

The cats are quiet today. Sick cat lingers on. He gave me a scare last night. I’d let him out the front to enjoy some fresh air. I was with him, then turned my back for a minute, and he was gone. I thought, I’ll probably never see him again. Broke my heart thinking of him out there in the cold, waiting to die. I cursed myself for my stupidity. My spouse and I donned flashlights and walked around, searching and calling for forty-five minutes. He neither showed nor answer. Then, lo’, two hours later, he was back at the front door.

I’ve been meditating on of my friend’s death, and my short history with him. I’ve only known him ten years. He was an intelligent, earnest, amiable guy. I met him through Brains on Beer, an informal group of retired scientists and engineers who like to drink beer and talk science, the arts, and politics. I was member number seven. Only one of the original six remain, but we’ve managed to expand to twelve. I advocated setting up a gofundme to take donations in his name for some of his charities, and the others agreed, so I’ll be doing that today.

These losses — the friend and sick cat’s waning battle — set me on a mental memory roadshow. Before living on Oregon, I lived in California for fourteen years. After moving to Oregon, business kept taking me to California for a few more years, so I have California on my mind. My neurons noticed and now “California Dreamin'” by the Mamas and the Papas (1965) in on the morning mental music stream’s PA system. It’s been featured as theme music before, but it’s a solid song and will work again. I like this video of it from the Ed Sullivan Show. Hope you enjoy it, too.

And now the neurons are whispering, “Pardon, sir, might we have a bit o’coffee for the blood?” Stay positive, test negative, wear a mask as needed, and get the shots as needed. Have a better one. Cheers

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