Lifestyle

"We don’t receive wisdom; we must discover it for ourselves after a journey that no one can take for us or spare us."

- Marcel Proust

Quinn, the Medicine Woman we interviewed is a beautiful, vibrant woman who embodies this Proust quote.

She lives a journey dictated by movement, change, curiosity and a wicked sense of humour. At 62 years young, she is never without purpose. Her father was in the military, so Quinn’s family lived in Germany for a time and moved often across Canada. As an adult, Quinn continued her journey of discovery, living in 6 provinces and one territory.

For the last 20 years, Kamloops, British Columbia has been Quinn’s home base where she is active in the arts community, the LGB community and the mental health community.

Her career experiences are as varied and as interesting as the many locations she has called home. To list a few, Quinn has worked with the mentally challenged, taught behavior modification, managed the world renown Teahouse at Abkhazi Garden in Victoria, BC, was a literary assistant, worked in battered women’s shelters, has even been a chimney sweep, and for the last 25 years has run her own business as a certified art framer. (This is how I met her.)

Quinn works with several prominent artists in the Kamloops area, and her artistic flair is evident in her exceptional work. She often works with restoring older pieces, displaying family heirlooms and working with First Nations' art.

Quinn travels in many different circles in the community where she is known for her intellect, her sharp wit, her bluntness, her generosity and her compassion. Quinn is also recognized in the community for her knowledge of cannabis; she recently owned and operated a cannabis dispensary for 4 years in Kamloops. She is sought out for her wisdom and is often referred to as a medicine woman.

Cannabis has been part of Quinn’s life since she was 14. In her words,

"In grade 9, I was influenced by the hippies and wanted to try pot. I did not smoke so I tried eating hash, and it didn’t do anything, so I snuck out one night and bought a pack of Export-A’s and I taught myself to smoke."

She has consumed cannabis almost everyday of her life since that time of experimentation.

A very interesting point arises from our conversation when Quinn answers my question about possible side effects:

"I always thought of myself as a recreational user until about ten years ago. Then, I realized that I actually was using cannabis for medical purposes; I am ADHD. I think a lot of people use it for medicinal purposes without realizing this. It takes me down a level, so I can concentrate and work for long periods of time. This might not necessarily be related to the marijuana, but I am 62 and take no medicines; I work out hard almost everyday, and I have no ailments."

Quinn goes on to comment that she believes this is the case for a great many people as the cannabis works for them even though they might not notice it is helping them. Next, I ask about possible side effects; "I do not have any side effects," is Cheetie’s reply. But she qualifies it with a realization that about ten years ago she noticed the type of cannabis she was using, "was taking too much of my energy, [more] than I liked."

This observation was the catalyst that prompted a significant change in Quinn’s use of cannabis. She has switched from Indica to Sativa.

Due to my lack of knowledge, she kindly explains the difference.

"Indica is high in THC, tetrahydrocannabinol, and this is the chemical that makes you high. So you reference it as “in the couch” because it makes you just want to sit around on the couch. The Sativa has more CBD, cannabidiol, which is more beneficial for medical conditions as it helps to eliminate tremors, seizures, inflammation and anxiety.

Both THC and CBD interact with your body’s endocannabinoid system, but they have very different effects. CBD is found primarily in extractions from the hemp plant. It’s sold in gels, gummies, oils, supplements, extracts, and more. THC is the main psychoactive compound in marijuana. It can be consumed by smoking marijuana. It’s also available in oils, edibles, tinctures, capsules, and more. Both compounds interact with your body’s endocannabinoid system, but they have very different effects."

Quinn goes on to explain *Charlotte’s Web, which helps greatly to reduce "seizuring and anxiety." For example, this type of cannabis reduces the inflammation which results in a reduction of pain; however, she states that pain from a surgery or illness would be better served by THC than CBD.

I next ask Quinn about the inducement of paranoia linked to cannabis consumption.

She believes that over the years, the deliberate cultivation of cannabis has led to a product which is too high in THC and too low in CBDs. This creates an imbalance in the body, which can lead to types of paranoia.

Quinn continues:

"Cannabis has many amazing sides to it. But one of the down sides is that in young people, they have not given their body a chance to develop its cerebral cortex. And if they have any tendencies toward any mental illness, it will bring it out."

Quinn shares a story about when she was called to school because her daughter was caught smoking pot. The school counsellor asked Quinn how she felt about pot. Her response:

"I feel the same way I do about alcohol and sex, that it is all about adult choices."

A wise reply in such a situation.

Our conversation continues to cover the topics of supply and of the legalization of cannabis in Canada; topics which each deserve their own article.


Footnotes

*Charlotte’s Web is a medical strain high in CBD, a cannabis compound (or cannabinoid) that has a range of medical applications. Colorado growers the Stanley Brothers created this strain specifically for Charlotte Figi—a young epilepsy patient and medical cannabis user—by crossing an unspecified strain with industrial hemp. The effectiveness of Charlotte’s Web in treating Figi’s seizures was publicized in a CNN special and garnered enough attention to attract droves of families to Colorado in search of similar relief. Charlotte’s Web has spurred a wave of innovation in CBD breeding, giving us strains like Cannatonic. With limited psychoactivity, Charlotte’s Web contains little to no THC. Its CBD content, however, runs from 15 to 20%—that’s 300 times higher than the CBD of the average recreational strain.

Unlike its cousin cannabinoid THC, CBD doesn’t act directly on the body’s endocannabinoid receptors. Instead, it is thought to work indirectly by increasing the availability of the body’s own endocannabinoid compounds to stimulate those receptors. Essentially, CBD may act as a booster to help out many of the body’s naturally functioning processes.

  Posted: Tuesday, October 2nd, 10:00am 19 days ago

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