Its Just Weed, Right?
Trauma Is Just Like Smoking Weed, It All Depends On How You Roll It.
Puff Puff Pass
Now everyone don’t raise your hand at once, but how many of you’ll have smoked a blunt, joint, or hit a bong once or twice or a few times? Oh, so I’m the only one that has smoked weed before, huh? Ohh, okay, that’s what I thought. It’s just weed, and weed ain’t never hurt nobody. In my Katt William’s voice, “that’s the side effects, hungry, happy, and sleepy.” But my real question is, is that all it does? See, here’s the thing about weed, we use it for just about everything when it comes to our mental health.
We use weed to make us feel good. We use weed when we want to celebrate. We use weed to ease our mind, and we use it to calm our nerves. Weed is also used to help those with medical conditions have a better quality of life. I am here for the weed-smoking and am a supporting advocate. However, we use weed for so many positive reasons that we overlook how it can negatively affect us and become a coping mechanism. It becomes our mood stabilizer for us to cope with everyday life experiences. Now don’t get me wrong, I’m not against smoking weed; I used to be an avid weed smoker myself.
Let’s talk about Sha’Carri Richardson, the track queen at Louisiana State University. This young queen is breaking NCAA records in track and field events. She is the epitome of being Young, Talented, and Black!! According to national news, she was recently suspended for a month for testing positive for a prohibited chemical found in marijuana, which automatically withdraws her qualifying time from the Olympic trials in Oregan. In an NBC interview, Richardson stated, that marijuana was a way she coped with both the unexpected death of her mother, mixed with the pressure of preparing for upcoming races. I’ve said this before, and I’ll repeat, this young lady should not run in the Olympics
“I know I can’t hide myself, so in some type of way, I was trying to hide my pain.”
She’s Human and She Smoke
My opinion about her not competing in the Olympics has little to do with failing the drug test because marijuana is not a performance enhancement drug (PED). This is bigger than the Olympics. It’s about her mental health. She needs the grieve the loss of her biological mother. Her lapse in judgment put her in a position to lose this opportunity. Showing the world that she needs to focus on what really matters, the stability of her mental health. Time to smoke, cry, scream, and express however she feels, without the pressure of what’s around her. In corporate America companies don’t even allow us to grieve appropriately, merely providing three (bereavement) days to process the death of immediate family. We all know that three days isn’t enough time to do anything, let alone plan a funeral, inform the family, and deal with your feelings. To push this young queen to still run in the Olympics without processing her feelings first is mental health suicide.
Have you ever treid to smoke weed without breaking it down first?
Addressing trauma is like grinding your weed before you smoke. Breaking down your pains allows you to see the structure and remove all the stems and seeds that grew with you. These traumatic stems and seeds can clog your mind and judgment, causing little airflow hindering your experiences. I have nothing against smoking weed, but let us get our mental health in order so that we can elevate and experience the natural therapeutic benefits of marijuana.
Typically during tough times, we go to what we know makes us feel better. We’ll seek refuge in our own vices i.e, food, drinking, sex, prayer, church, grandma house, shopping, and drugs. Whatever our vice is, that is what we’re more than likely to go to because it’s comfortable and temporarily euphoric. Smoking weed gives many of us that calming euphoric feeling by suppressing and dismissing many of our emotions. Many of us use marijuana more than we use Tylenol. Not trying to tell anyone how to grieve nor live their life, but if you’re hurting emotionally, you should take time to process your feelings. As a community, instead of telling people to push on, push past, and get over their feelings, we need to express grace, empathy, and understanding while teaching our people to step one (acknowledgment) before going to step two (whatever step two may be for you). Sha’ Carri’s lapse in judgment was her trying to cope during a stressful period in her life. Teaching our people how and when to make mental health a priority and putting opportunities second is a great skill, especially for children and young adults who become celebrities. Many of us don’t learn the importance of self-care until we’ve hit rock bottom mix the desperation to recover. While this revelation and understanding of self-care typically occur in our late twenties to mid-thirties, let’s start early teaching and normalizing the importance of self-care in comparison to missed opportunities.