Please help me keep working, learning & smiling!

Hello, friends! I’m sorry that it’s been so long since I updated here. It’s been quite a tough year for me and AJ, health-wise. When I’m doing poorly, it’s very difficult for me to keep up with this blog and all of my social media accounts. I usually end up defaulting to Facebook, because that is where 90% of my social life takes place as a spoonie.


As many of you know, I’ve been a chronic pain patient for 15 years now, having finally received diagnoses of fibromyalgia and arthritis in the past year, along with a slew of related health issues. After five years of struggling to get back on our feet after a difficult job loss and increased illness, AJ and I moved to Washington state in November of 2014.

I’d previously been on narcotic pain medication for a number of years. When I stopped taking them, I realized that there were a number of negative side effects I’d been experiencing, which vanished fairly suddenly… So I wouldn’t be interested in being on narcotics on a daily basis now, even if there were doctors willing to prescribe them with the current war on narcotics.

In my new home, I started seeking relief by going to a clinic where medical marijuana recommendations are provided. I got my recommendation easily once I got hold of a copy of my medical records. For the next year, I was able to do a relatively decent job of keeping this pain medicine around, but when my business slowed down significantly this year, I began to struggle.

I spoke with my PCP about other methods of pain relief. I started taking small doses of gabapentin (generic Neurontin) and duloxetine (Cymbalta). They seemed to help for a while, then petered out. After the duloxetine dose had been increased for some time, I started noticing lots of weird, random symptoms like extra nerve pain, painful and embarrassingly excessive flatulence, increased headaches, a chronic sore throat and much more. I was shocked to discover that it is common for Cymbalta to cause all of the odd side effects I was experiencing. I slowly tapered off and have been completely off of duloxetine for several months, but I’m still experiencing side effects, which I have since discovered is not uncommon.

My dose of gabapentin was increased, and I was switched from one muscle relaxer to another. This is all that my PCP would do for the increased pain post-duloxetine. It soon became clear that the gabapentin was actually causing increased nerve pain, so I’ve now tapered off of that as well.

Not only does marijuana — in my case, a mix of CBD and THC — bring me significant pain relief, but it has also lowered my blood pressure to the point that I no longer need to take lisinopril, which I’d been taking for years. When I can afford to take it regularly enough, I don’t need to take my prescribed clonazepam (Klonopin) for anxiety or sleep, either.

As of July 1st, all dispensaries in Tacoma (and I believe the rest of WA) were closed. I now have to buy my medicine at certain certified recreational stores, and the only discount for patients is the 9.5% sales tax. We still have to pay the 37% marijuana “sin” tax. The expense has more than doubled suddenly, and it costs me up to $20 per day to get enough meaningful relief that I am able to run my small business, run errands for my small family when AJ (who is also disabled and works from home) is too unwell to join me, and to focus on learning, developing new skills and finding ways to forge more stability for ourselves in the future.

Our ultimate plan is to save up to reinstate AJ’s license and get a car so we can move to a small town near the Oregon coast within the next few years. I need to have the ability to keep working toward this goal, which is why I am here, asking for your help. Once we make it to Oregon and have the space to do so, we’ll be able to grow our own plants and make our own medicine from them.

In the meantime, every penny donated through my fundraiser will help to make dreams come true for one disabled couple who already moved cross-country to make a better life for themselves, only to have much-needed medicine suddenly moved out of reach. All funds from this campaign will be used for medical costs, limited to medical marijuana and transportation to acquire it.

The goal for this campaign reflects the funds needed to purchase medical marijuana products for the rest of 2016, plus $500 to cover PayPal and Fundrazr fees as well as transportation to acquire the medicine.

With your help, we can thrive, grow, and continue to climb the ladder of self-sufficiency despite our physical limitations. Just $4 pays for one dose of 10 mg THC and CBD, which provides several hours of relief.

Whether you are able to help by making a contribution, spreading the word to those who may be able to do so, or just wishing us well on our journey, I appreciate you caring enough to read this far!

AJ and I are currently studying Reiki, with the intention of helping ourselves and others to heal. We’re about to get our Level II attunements and we will be at the point where we are ready to send distance Reiki out this autumn. Unless you let me know that you’d prefer we didn’t include you, we’ll be sending Reiki to everyone who has contributed on a near-daily basis once we are able. (We may need to occasionally take a night off due to illness or pain.) We already practice self Reiki nightly, so we’re not promising something we don’t know we can keep up with. We’ll just be expanding upon our current practice. If you have any specific intentions you’d like included for you, please just let us know.

Feel free to join the Facebook group connected to this fundraiser for updates, including photos and receipts when I get my medicine!

Much love and many blessings, friends!

PS: If you’d like to check out the jewelry that I make along with the metaphysical items recently added to my shop, you may do so here. If you’d like to check out our Amazon wishlist, we try to keep it up to date with OTC medicines and supplements of which we are currently in need.


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