LT: I’m sitting down with Jacqui Childs today to talk about Cannabis! Jacqui; please tell us a bit about what has drawn you into towards cannabis?
JC: I was looking to be healthier, looking for health & wellness. It was just before my 43rd birthday I had full hysterectomy and just a lot of health issues overall. The year before my hysterectomy, I had so many doctors appointments, seeing a lot of specialists; and each time I was thinking, ‘I’m probably the youngest person in the room’. I knew I needed to figure out on my own, ‘what’s the deal here’. This is when I came to realize that it was the pharmaceuticals I was taking.
Looking back, at first I thought I was drinking too much. And then I started to talk to people about alcohol use and I started to read more about it and I don’t think it was the drinking. Everyone else in my family was healthy, so than what was it? The pharmaceuticals were killing me. It was my own fault, a lot of it anyway, you know; ‘1 is good, 2 is better……..’. I was using everything that was legally prescribed by my family doctor and I was overusing. What was supposed to be 2 years of medications (I also have Crohn’s disease) turned into 9 years and then ½ dose turned into 2.5 and then eventually 9. Near the end I was taking 9 pills a day and at times this went up to 20 pills a day. I would take something for an upset stomach, and then something to help me sleep, then something to get up, something to fly with, something for a headache, something to deal with in crowds, and it was shutting me down. My body was rejecting it so I was taking more, and then adding alcohol.
I finally went to the doctors to see about weaning off and there is a process to do that, and obviously and it’s a long process and of course there are meds to help with that as well. So I left the doctors office and I haven’t been back and it’s been almost 18 months. I quit cold turkey that day – without telling family or friends; although my husband thought something was up. I was soaking wet and nervous, I couldn’t drive, could barely see, I was dizzy for a few months. The withdrawal was pretty bad. At first I thought I could hide it, and I did for about 3 weeks and I was very sick.
I started researching CBD’s thru my in-laws. They live in Arizona and they have religiously use cannabis and had all their life. I learned a lot about the plant, and the oils and hemp, and I started to feel better. It helped with the anxiety, it helped with the sleep, so I started doing some more research on it and I started telling people about it. I would tell them how I cook with it, how I bathe with it, the lotions and potions, I was celebrating CBD! Then I started to notice that at every get together I was drinking more and a little more than I would have liked to. I thought that the high or the buzz I was feeling from being on Ativan etc and I think I may have been missing that or floating around some depression. I think that’s why I was drinking more so I thought, I’m going to try some THC. I’m going to try some Rick Simpson Oil, I’m going to start really slow, and at a really low dose and start to see if maybe that will help with it. So the CBD was great, I added THC in a very low dose, 5 mg, and that was perfect. I barely drank anymore.
I had actually gone on my first all inclusive vacation to Mexico and I wasn’t drunk there! Everyone one said, ‘wow good for you’, stuff like that, and I said to myself, this is a big deal. I would actually have a glass of wine and really enjoy it……I wasn’t in a race to finish the bottle or having shots at the bar with my girlfriends. It was a change. I was changing. As a result of it, I didn’t realize that I was actually drinking less until I was looking back at it. Looking back I also noticed during the same trip, for the first time I was able to have breakfast with my husband who is an early riser, vacation or not. I actually had breakfast with him! This was a big deal! We go on many trips a year, and all of a sudden I wasn’t waking up with a hangover, I don’t have anxiety, I’m not too tired to get up, I was probably making things up and hiding things. I don’t really know? I’m so different now. I don’t really like saying ‘I don’t care’. I do care, it just doesn’t matter as much. Maybe I’m spiritual now? I don’t know!
LT: Wow that’s amazing, so that was your draw to Cannabis – wellness first. You’re Pharma-free now and managing your health conditions, whether that’s anxiety or Crohn’s, those are big things that you are managing with Cannabis. Do you now view yourself as a Cannabis advocate?
JC: Yes, and when I say ‘yes’, I feel like a Cannabis advocate. I’ve done a lot of award things this past year, I’ve had a lot of talks with groups and I always start with an apology as I feel I was perpetuating that negative perception of ‘you’re a stoner’, ‘you stink’, ‘they’re all losers’, ‘look at their skin and look at their hair’, ‘they probably don’t work’, and ‘they are probably on welfare’. Well, I married one of those people and he is an extremely intelligent person and he doesn’t use it medicinally like I do, he has nothing wrong with him. Maybe that’s why, because he uses Cannabis. He’s a great guy, he has no health issues or anxiety etc. We look at things differently now. I love our cannabis talks we have together.
I’m an advocate for sure. I always starts my talks with ‘I’m sorry, I was wrong, I was very judgy’. I grew up with my parents teaching me that drugs are bad, say no to drugs. If you do drugs of any kind you are going to think you can fly, you can do anything, you can fall into the wrong group and this is how I raised my children as well so when this started to happen, I owed the community an apology because I was wrong, I went with only what I knew.
LT: A lot of people are experiencing this and I think Nancy Reagan was very convincing with the ‘just say no’ campaign. There are all these mindsets now that could shift – if open to it, and look at the wellness you’ve received from it, I think that’s amazing.
In what way would you like to contribute to the Cannabis conversation moving forward? Is there a message that is really important to you that gets out thru your audience or thru your opportunities to speak.
JC: Just in the last few days I think I need to focus on, both in my writings and when I speak, to the topic of over consumption. Over consumption is never good in anything whether it’s alcohol or drugs, cannabis, pharmaceuticals, food etc. It’s just not a good thing. I’d like to make sure wherever I’m speaking, and whatever we may be focused on, that I’m also ensuring Health and wellness in number one. Whether I’m basing this on plant medicine, health and wellness, or spreading kindness, I think that over consumption should be something we talk more about. I also see all kinds of media using as an example these big bongs being smoked with huge clouds of smoke, well I’m not sure how I fit in that space. I see myself headed in more of that ‘seed to sale’ approach rather than the hydroponics, (although these are very interesting). I lean towards the less is more not over consumption.
I research and read a lot about canna and the first thing I see in hashtags are words and phrases like ‘high times’, ‘high life’, and I don’t know how ‘plant-based wellness’ these messages are.
LT : That’s a great message and that leads to a responsible cannabis use conversation which is really important. I haven’t seen a lot of people talking about over consumption and that is a great awareness message.
Jc: Everyone wants to be the ‘cool-kid’ and no matter how old you are, your sex or your race, it seems that the ‘in crowd’ might be holding us in that negative space as it relates to over consumption. I’ve gone to dab parties, and it’s all cool and well, I did my first CBD dab at one, but these may be still sending this negative message. It’s never good to do everything everyday or too much of anything.
LT: I think it’s great, and we want this to be a positive experience for everyone new to Cannabis in Canada. Our country is being watched around the world as we roll out legalization and you are a voice for Cannabis in Canada.
JC: You can strip me bare, take it all away from me and I’ve only got my truth, my story. I hope that there is more authenticy going forward. Everyone is very eager to get into this market, this gold rush or green rush as it’s called. It’s a plant. It’s mother nature. Maybe we should be a little more kinder and authentic with the entire situation before jumping on board.
LT: I love that. And that leads to my next questions, women in weed, what does that mean to you?
JC: I’ve never been a ‘girls girl’. I have a lot of trust issues and a lot of times I speak before I think. I don’t have a lot of best friends, or best girl friends, but women in weed have been great. I’m hosting these high teas for example and people are coming in from all over. Yesterday people flew in from all over Canada! I was asking people what are you doing here? They would say, ‘we are here to see you!’. I said, ‘you flew in and out in same day to see me?’. It’s crazy, they came from Quebec, NB, Ottawa…….to pick my brain, to hear me talk!
I always say to people, ‘I see you, I hear you, I get it’. We are so judged by our likes and our following. On my instagram account, I have 132K following me. I see a lot of them are ants, looking for my cleavage, my nip slip, looking for me to say something ridiculous. There are some people in the following that are really supporting, and they happen to be women for the first time in my life!
They are reaching out to me and saying I’m going through this and I’m going through that etc, I just spent Wednesday on the phone for 3.5 hours with a woman who reached out to me on Facebook. She was going to kill herself!. I got her on the phone, she was intoxicated, I got her to read my book, have a bath, call her parents, we did this all on Facetime.
I have lost so many friends to the opioid crisis, even this past year. I had attended three funerals just in the past few months. These are people that I had personally dropped off CBD edibles and oil. I tried to help them, to talk to them. I would talk to them anytime and I’m busy. They tried to reach out and I felt responsible that I didn’t give enough. So when this girl messaged me, I questioned myself, should I get involved, should I do it? My husband said get your ass up! So I said okay, I’m going to try and talk her down, and we have talked everyday since. So that day, she put a CBD bath bomb in, she read my book, I guess through social media she had a real misconception of who I really was. I didn’t want to be celebritized. I let her know that I was there, right where she was, even worse, more than once. I let her know. I would read her a quick story, and said ‘if you think I’m some kind of hero or whatever, you can be that too’ let’s make a list, let’s start today, let’s make a list of what you are going to do today, first of all you are going to sober up, today! You might fall again tomorrow but let’s get thru today. So she made a list of all the things she wanted to do and CBD was added to it. She is ok – for now.
LT: That’s an amazing story. That’s women helping women. From what I’ve experienced so far there is a lot of it in this industry. Maybe it’s because women are out there creating things in their kitchen for example?
JC: Yes, I’m flooded with product. The ‘stay at home mom’ who has created this cream or the sex and cannabis thing, the lubes, jams & honey. It’s all very cool. I’m going to Arizona tomorrow and people have sent things there as they can’t send to Canada so my mother in law says you should see the stuff waiting for you. I do take the time and I try the stuff and I do give, privately, my real feedback, good or bad. And I don’t love everything. This is why I love the influencing space.
I’m my own brand, I’m my own business, I’ve incorporated. I don’t need sponsors to appease. I can say no ‘I’m not doing that’. I can say you like it or you don’t and you don’t get to tweak it. What I say today I may not say tomorrow.
LT: That’s great, you are controlling your brand and you’ve got control of your product which is ‘you’!
JC: I’ve used the hashtag ‘Jackpot’. I say ‘on my journey to health and wellness I hit the #Jackpot’. I’ve started doing sex and cannabis talks, and that was my Jackpot! I mean we have a great sex life and I love my husband very much. We are very into each other and one night I noticed that something was very different……. and then a day or two later I had tried the lube, I was taking THC oil pills, and taking them every 4 hours, and I was like, holy crap, I see you I feel you, you look better, you feel better, and that just happened. I think that’s why Women in Weed and the whole sex and cannabis talks are really cool. I’ve been sharing, and I think it’s easy. It’s been a nice pairing. I do get a lot of questions from women. There is a lot of education and room for growth in the ‘sex and cannabis’ and ‘women in cannabis’ and ‘moms in cannabis’.
LT: So, you tried dabbing, can you tell me about it?
JC: I went to a xmas party and I did a THC dab, I was there as an influencer, the party was over, so phones are away, cameras away, and I did a dab. I said ‘I will do this, but nothing goes on social media’ I was fine, I was ok, I was high, but it’s not my thing.
I then talked to someone about CBD dabs and how it’s so good for you. I got a dab rig. It was fabulous, I felt great all day, I didn’t realize this though until the end of the day and I thought WOW; I had a great day. I didn’t take any breaks, I usually do take a lot of breaks, because of the Chron’s I get tired. I wasn’t tired. I don’t drink a lot of coffee or pop, so I think it was the dab. I wasn’t high though.
LT: Is there a favourite CBD product?
JC: I take about 1200 mg a day of CBD. I take Hemp based CBD. I also take cannabis CBD without THC.
LT: Look forward 5 years, what do you think the big change will be in our culture as we look forward to all this legalization.
JC: I would like to see us with more freedom, to advertise and promote. Much like the liquor industry has. I do like the slogan, ‘alcohol hurts, cannabis heals’, I really like that. I hope we have been on our way to focusing on that within the next 5 years. Let’s face it, alcohol doesn’t help with anything other than sterilizing something. So I do hope that we are more focused on the healing aspect of cannabis. And that we don’t compare Cannabis to Liquor.
I hope we progress more. I hope all the noise gets put to the background. If we are doing things for the greater good, than how how could it be bad?
LT: You have so many great expressions, is there one that you would like us to share?
JC: ‘Be your own best friend’. When you give advice to your friend, why wouldn’t you give that advice to yourself. Stop trying to fit in, be good to yourself, the right people won’t care, stop pretending, stop keeping up with the Joneses, keep up with yourself. The right things will happen, you’ll end up with the right friends.
JC: Cannalief, I met them at an investor party. I made a lot of great contacts that night but not many were there to do business; but we were! A few weeks later a craft grower from Alberta reached out to me and I love Alberta. I just love the West Coast. I like their message, natural plant based. I’m heading out there in the spring, they are young, and I love that. I love the young people with their visions, where they think we should be, I love that. I love sharing with them.
About Cannalief: Canalief grew out of the desire to help people actualize the health benefits of medical cannabis. We know first hand what it is to want to break free from industrialized pharmaceuticals, and we’re here to offer a safe, effective alternative.
We dig deep into cutting-edge medical cannabis technology to grow with our partners and provide safe, effective medical solutions. We offer a broad array of cannabis developed to address illnesses and injuries.
On top of that, our craft product is homegrown and comes with a personal touch —we’re creating real connections one-on-one because we need less faceless interactions and more kindness.
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