Allow me to introduce myself! My name is Amanda, and I am the married mother of 3 beautiful children. I am also a registered nurse who specializes in labor and delivery.
About 7 years ago, I developed some very significant medical problems. After 4 years of struggling to figure out what was wrong with me, I had an episode where the entire right side of my face went numb. Soon after that, I was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis. Like always, I was put through the wide array of testing, and prescribed a total of 17 different medications. Some of them helped a little, and some not at all.
The spasticity in my legs was so bad sometimes that it was hard to bend my knees. I was living in constant agony. I had to give up my job as a labor and delivery nurse because I could barely function anymore, and my children began to see a mother that they didn't even know. I couldn't get out of bed because my pain was so bad that I couldn't walk. My husband had to help lift me out of the bath tub when I was in too much pain to do it myself. I was ready to give up.
My name is Amanda, and I am a closet criminal. I can't give you more details about myself, because I could risk losing my children, or going to jail. Why? Because I use cannabis to treat my multiple sclerosis. When I was at the end of my rope, a friend suggested that I try cannabis to help with my pain. At that point, I was willing to try anything, and my life hasn't been the same ever since. Today, I am a vibrant young mom again.
Yes, I still have my bad days. Cannabis isn't a cure for multiple sclerosis, so I will always have some symptoms. But I am living again. I am even traveling again! Cannabis gave me my life back. I take a total of 3 prescriptions now. THREE! And my spasticity is less than a quarter of what it used to be.
Unfortunately, due to our current laws, I have to be a "criminal". I have to risk everything just so I can live a normal life. I want to shout from the roof tops how much this medication has helped me. I am hopeful that one day very soon, our politicians will listen to us, and I won't have to worry any more. But until then, I will have to remain a closet "criminal" so that I can live my life and raise my children.
Thank you so much for taking the time to read my story.
Patient & Caregiver Stories
These stories represent real Iowans suffering from complex medical conditions that need access to medical cannabis right here at home.