Unexpected Side Effects

Everybody knows the litany of side effects associated with consuming cannabis. Lethargy, red eyes, decreased short term memory, and of course, the dreaded munchies. There are a multitude of positive effects as well, such as reduced anxiety, pain relief, and myriad other benefits. Something I did not expect, though, was a sort of spiritual awakening. I knew cultivating would be a nice little hobby, and would even be calming. However, the connection I feel with this life I have created from seed and soil is nearly indescribable. In just a few short weeks, these ladies have brought a joy into my life that I worried was gone forever.

In the beginning, there was a lot of stress and worry. I had never so much as a tomato, let alone multiple cannabis plants in a strictly controlled environment. What if I had a black thumb? What if I poured all this money in to this and I was terrible at it? These worries were heightened when my first couple attempts at germination fell on their face. I needed to take a step back, and decide on a clear goal, and the path needed to get there. I regrouped, rallied the troops and made another attempt, exuding all the positive energy I could muster into those tiny seeds. Lo and behold, my perseverance paid off and I was 5 for 5 on germination. My confidence grew, though still nervous, and I knew then that I could do this.

With my seedlings growing, I was now faced with a whole new set of decisions. When do I water? How much is too much water? When do I transplant? When do they go under the big light? So many decisions, and my life has been plagued with indecision. There was no room for me to hem and haw. I had to stick to the plan and, most importantly, pay attention to the girls. They would tell me what they need, I just needed to listen. One of the girls succumbed to damping off withing the first week. I recognized the symptoms, got her out, and changed course with the others…hey, look at me, making decisions and feeling good about them. This loss didn’t immediately fill me with sadness and self doubt, but showed me that I am learning and getting better. I, much like my ladies, was growing. Becoming more patient and sure of myself everyday. Maybe I was on to something here.

Miss Gertrude filling out nicely.

Feeling like I had some momentum going, I transplanted the girls into some larger pots. Cue the tendrils of dread sneaking into the back of my mind. But this was no time to hesitate. There were roots showing all around the pods, and these ladies needed more space. I got them potted, and watered them in…shit, was that too much water? Yes. Yes it was. Great, I thought, I really fucked up this time. I knew what to do though. Let them dry, don’t mess with them, and despite the loss of another girl, 3 of them rebounded. Other than a little leaf damage, they seemed to be thriving. Patience. They weren’t lying when they said it was a virtue.

At a couple weeks in, I got some bad news from my doctor. Nothing i didn’t know, I’m a fat ass and I need to take better care of myself. I’ve known this for a long time, but lacked any sort of motivation to do anything about it. But, some how, some way, I made the immediate decision to turn this shit around. That same day, the garden room also became the weight room. These girls were doing something deeper than I had realized. These bitches were… making me happy. Making me care about life. Making me want to do more and be better. I started running the same night I got the phone call. I barely made it down the street before I started getting tunnel vision and thinking this was the big one. But I kept pushing and withing a week I ran a 13 minute mile without stopping. I also found great joy lifting weights in the garden room, and part of me feels like the ladies like it when I’m in there with them. Like they are cheering me on. My significant other has a saying about farming and gardening that you put love in to them now so they can put love in to you later. I feel that this is true, but I also feel that they are already reciprocating.

A new addition, Saoirse.

Little did I know when I began walking this path, that I would be so profoundly changed in such a short period of time. I am more confident, more outgoing, more health conscious. I also feel as though I am becoming a part of a larger community. For the first time in a long time, I have something to look forward to, something that makes me want to be the best me I can be. Consider me blindsided.

Shane

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