Support for legalized marijuana in the United States has reached a record high level. Almost 70% of Americans now believe in ending the lengthy prohibition of the plant.
There are hundreds of scientific studies backing the possible benefits of cannabis. With each positive study comes the hope that the federal government will listen to a majority of the population’s wishes.
While there are countless stories of how the cannabis plant has helped people, some tales are more moving and noteworthy than others. In this article, we look at how the lives of three extraordinary people were changed by marijuana forever.
1 – Charlotte Figi
Charlotte Figi’s story is one of the best-known and most ground-breaking instances of medical marijuana use. There is now a best-selling globally-recognized cannabis strain in her name: Charlotte’s Web.
Charlotte Figi was born as a twin. Along with her brother, she had a healthy and happy birth. However, Charlotte suffered her first seizure at just three months old. Her first seizure lasted approximately 30 minutes. From that point on, Charlotte began suffering from regular seizures. They lasted anywhere from two to four hours at a time and occurred hundreds of times a week.
She endured regular hospital visits, rigorous tests, and many medication trials. However, doctors remained at a loss as to the issue behind the symptoms. By the age of five, Charlotte lost the ability to eat, walk or talk. She was suffering more severe seizures than ever before.
A Web of Joy
In November 2000, Charlotte’s home state of Colorado approved Amendment 20. It changed the state’s constitution to permit the use of medical marijuana for patients with recommended conditions. Charlotte’s parents tried cannabis oil in a last-ditch attempt to help their daughter. Despite reservations, they applied for marijuana through the program. Charlotte became the youngest patient in the state to apply. She was only five years old!
After one small dose of cannabis oil, Charlotte’s seizures disappeared for seven days! Astounded and desperate to continue this treatment, Charlotte’s parents got in touch with the Stanley brothers. They were working on a high CBD, low THC cannabis product but had no idea where to go with it.
Charlotte began having CBD oil every day in her food and started thriving. Her ability to walk, talk and eat returned. From up to 300 seizures per week at one stage, Charlotte had just 2-3 each month.
We should note the generosity of the Stanley brothers in this instance. Initially, the Figis paid approximately $800 for two ounces of high-CBD, low-THC marijuana. The Stanleys practically ‘gave away’ their strain by charging a small fraction of its real worth. Charlotte’s story resonated with the parents of children who had epilepsy. She even appeared on the cover of High Times magazine.
In April 2020, Charlotte was hospitalized with pneumonia. She then suffered seizures, respiratory failure, and finally, cardiac arrest. She sadly passed away on April 7, 2020, aged just 13. In Colorado, Governor Jared Polis proclaimed April 7 as ‘Charlotte Figi Day.’
May she rest in peace.
2 – Rick Simpson
Rick Simpson is a legend throughout the marijuana industry. If you haven’t heard of him, you might have heard of his product – Rick Simpson Oil or RSO. Simpson is a Canadian medical marijuana activist who claimed that topical cannabis cured his skin cancer. He has helped thousands of other patients ever since. Simpson is also heavily involved in the fight for the legalization of medical marijuana.
Working in a hospital in 1997, he was exposed to toxic fumes from asbestos. He collapsed one day and banged his head. Symptoms such as dizziness and tinnitus plagued him for years following his fall. Simpson used cannabis to relieve these issues and found that marijuana could reduce all of his problems significantly.
Fast forward a few years, and Simpson was diagnosed with basal cell carcinoma, a type of skin cancer. He turned to cannabis again, believing it had served him well in the past. He had also read a study that suggested marijuana could kill cancer cells in mice.
Simpson opted to treat his cancer topically. He did so by soaking a bandage in cannabis concentrate and left it over his skin cancer site. At this stage, it had formed in lumps. Simpson left these bandages on for days at a time. After one four-day stint, he removed the bandage. He claimed that the cancerous lumps had disappeared entirely.
It didn’t take long for him to become a massive advocate for the plant. Despite several police raids and arrests, Simpson continued to cultivate and harvest his unique cannabis oil.
3 – Doctor William Courtney
At the age of 16, Kristen Peskuski received a diagnosis of juvenile rheumatoid arthritis. The condition quickly developed into an autoimmune disorder, leaving her bedridden for four years.
Kristen suffered multiple additional health conditions, including lupus, interstitial cystitis, and cervical dysplasia. She also had various allergies to pharmaceuticals and underwent fourteen operations.
In a bid to get some independence and health back, Kristen considered raw cannabis. Initially, her gynecologist was entirely against the idea. After a detailed medical evaluation, however, he believed that Kristen was likely to die soon. Therefore, he got in touch with Doctor William Courtney. At first, Courtney prescribed dry cannabis capsules but later switched to raw marijuana juice.
After one month, Kristen felt the benefits, which included dramatically reduced pain! Physicians once told Kristen that she would never have a baby. However, she defied all expectations by giving birth to a healthy baby girl. In a Hollywood-worthy twist, she also married Doctor Courtney!
Kristen and her husband co-founded Cannabis International. Today, they continue to spread the word about raw marijuana juicing. Doctor Courtney claims the process has saved many lives.
Final Thoughts: Is Marijuana a Miracle Worker?
These are three remarkable stories about how cannabis potentially helped people in very different situations. Tales such as these have propelled cannabis into the mainstream.
However, is cannabis a miracle cure? The likely answer is ‘no.’ If medical marijuana has benefits, they are firmly based on science. Further research is necessary into the possible therapeutic effects of cannabis. However, until it becomes fully legalized, patients in states without MMJ programs must break the law to gain access to it.