We’ve not spent enough time on this blog talking about the value of psychoactive and psychedelic drugs in the treatment of the dying. Let’s start putting that right. We’re talking cannabis, here, and also LSD, MDMA (ecstacy, on the street), and psilocybin, the fun ingredient in magic mushrooms.
If you find yourself deeply sceptical and utterly disinclined, here are two tasters.
Above is a talk by Marilyn Howell on how psychedelic therapy helped ease her daughter’s suffering at the end of her life.
Below is an extract from an article in the 420 Times about how a “60 something year old tea party type, a 2nd Amendment advocate, conservative, anti everything governmental, a war supporter” came around to feeding his dying wife cannabis-enhanced cookies.
If you want to delve deeper into academic research under way, go to the MAPS site. Highly recommended. Here.
One day, this stuff may help you.
I listened some months ago to Bob quietly lament his wife’s cancer to Ed in my office. While staring at the floor he sort of rambled unconnected ideas, randomly covering what he was thinking. “Can’t eat”, “always vomiting”, “losing weight”, “doctors know nothing”, “drugs don’t help”. He knew the end was coming and he just wanted her as comfortable as he could make her. It was one of those awkward moments where I saw in Bob a man who just needed to share his feelings and his fears. He wasn’t looking for an answer; he knew there aren’t any. It was one of those special moments when you know the man is letting you in for just a minute. Live long enough and you might be privileged to a few of these moments.
When Bob paused, Ed suggested she try marijuana. I instantly bristled. In a few words Ed espoused what benefits it might offer. Bob gave the look he always does when Ed says something he thinks is completely off the wall. I sort of
agreed with Ed’s reasoning and thought, “It couldn’t hurt”. Bob said she would never be able to smoke it. “Cookies, I’ll make her cookies,” Ed countered. “What kind does she like?”
“Toll House Chocolate Chip are her favorite” Bob said.
“I’ll make her a dozen tonight and bring them over. Where do you live?”
And so was born a 6 month long drug connection where dozens of marijuana laced cookies and brownies were purchased and delivered as part of an illicit NY drug trade between the most unlikely of partners. Every couple of weeks they would meet in the parking lot and I would watch the deal go down. It had none of the hurried nature of a typical street deal. To the uninformed all you would see is two older men greet with big grins and a hearty handshake. There was always some small talk before a few bills were held out and an oversized box of cookies under plastic wrap was handed over. Two men giving and taking and both being better for it. It was so natural.
Bob swore by them, “It’s all she will eat, I’ve had a few myself”, he said one afternoon with a cheshire grin. “It never completely eliminated the pain, it seemed to soften it”, he would later say. He did note her nausea all but stopped and she was able to maintain her weight till the end. His most telling comment was she stopped talking about her illness and impending demise. “The cookies relaxed her. She let it go and just let it come”, Bob said. “That was the biggest
blessing. It let us talk of other things; important things”.
Read the whole article here.