Some people know it as cannabis, some people know it as Mary Jane. Many also may know it as pot or ganja, but for me personally, the word “weed” sounds like music to my ears. For years, weed has been in the spotlight. However, it was not always used to get “high.” According to History.com, “Marijuana, also known as cannabis or pot, has a long history of human use. Most ancient cultures didn’t grow the plant to get high, but as herbal medicine, likely starting in Asia around 500 BC.” Fast forwarding a little bit to the ‘60s and ‘70s, during the hippie movement, cannabis was used for much more than just medicine. It was used for more of a statement and a social movement. People smoked weed to rebel against the government. They would even risk getting fined up to $20,000. What a time!
Times have definitely changed, especially now that weed is legal in some states. Many people use weed for many things, from relaxation, to partying, to sleeping, and medicine. The list goes on. In my eyes, weed is a wonderful and colorful plant that can not only help you relax, but also brings many to a high state of consciousness and creativity like no other! Have you ever been smoking and gotten an idea that you thought was the best idea that you think you’ve ever had? Or all of a sudden you thought you wanted to create something, or start a business, or maybe you just simply start thinking about life and our existence, and you say the most outrageous theory, and all your friends start to laugh at you as if it was a joke. That’s the power of good, old Mary Jane! According to Maxim.com, “Cannabis enhances neural activity in the frontal cortex of your brain, which is essentially command central. It handles everything from attention and problem-solving, to personality and temperament. When you toke up, the THC allows your brain to form new connections and pathways that didn’t exist before, thereby guiding your thought process into enlightened territory.” I believe this to be very cool. I normally like to light up when I am creating a piece of poetry, writing music, or even just daydreaming. I find that the ideas and thoughts that come to my head feel like I am in a whole other dimension.
Of course, when it comes to cannabis you definitely want to glorify the pros, the amazing facts and the cool insights. However, it is important to know that cannabis is a drug which means it can become addictive. One way that I keep track of my weed smoking so it doesn’t turn into an addiction is to make sure that I smoke when all of my responsibilities are complete. You want to make sure that when you use cannabis, you are not doing it to distract yourself from the responsibilities of the world, whether assignments or work obligations, etc. I normally do not smoke during the day when I have a lot to do, and save it for nighttime before I go to bed. Another way I like to gauge my smoking is to make sure that when I smoke, it is not to escape from internal feelings of sadness, depression, or anxiety. When you use weed as a coping mechanism, it stops being fun. This is because you are relying on it to make you happy and distract you from what you are feeling. Doing this will trigger your brain to depend on it and use it more than you need. This will also cause you to lose touch with reality.
The third way I gauge my smoking is by being aware if I am using it only to make myself eat. As you smoke, your appetite can disappear when you are sober. This makes you only eat when you’re high, building a dependency. This is something that we don’t want. It becomes easier and easier to tell if you are dependent on weed by thinking of how much you use it. It is important to stay aware of your cannabis use, and how it is affecting you! If you or a friend think that you may be having a problem with dependency on cannabis, feel free to reach out to the University of Southern Maine’s health center at 207-780-5411 for Gorham, or 207-780-4701 for Portland.
A&E Television Networks. (n.d.). Marijuana. History.com. Retrieved April 12, 2023, from https://www.history.com/topics/crime/history-of-marijuana
Yenisey, Z. (2022, July 30). Here’s the reason why smoking weed gives you majorly deep thoughts. Maxim. Retrieved April 12, 2023, from https://www.maxim.com/entertainment/why-we-get-deep-when-high-2017-8/
The dopest time for cannabis was in the ’60s and ’70s. (n.d.). Retrieved April 12, 2023, from https://www.thegrowthop.com/cannabis-culture/cannabis-culture-evolution-in-the-60s-and-70s
History.com, Marijuana 2023.