|Jacqueline Patterson from YouTube.|
When Jacqueline Patterson took her first toke of marijuana at the age of fourteen, she experienced what it was like to be without pain for the first time in her life. It’s also why she eventually had to leave Missouri. Patterson was born with cerebral palsy. The muscles on the right side of her body are significantly weaker and less developed than her left, and she speaks with a severe stutter, or as she prefers to call it, a “speech spasm.” Medical marijuana, Patterson says, has helped her deal with the pain her medical condition causes every day of her life, and it also helps with her speech. When she smokes, her brain doesn’t feel as rushed, and she’s able to get the words out easier, she says.
Although using marijuana to treat cerebral palsy is not unheard of these days, it wasn’t an accepted notion roughly twenty years ago when Patterson first tried it and noticed a remarkable difference it made on her body.
“Smoking cannabis as a teenager meant that I had to get it from my friends,” Patterson tells Daily RFT. “Which meant that I had to hang out with the people who had it, which was a problem in the beginning.”
She continues: “There was a drug-dealing senior at Park Hill High School when I was a freshman who took an interest in me because I was pretty and because my house was within walking distance of the campus. He always had weed, but he was abusively controlling, One day, he physically forced me to skip school, and my parents came home. Well, my mom came home with my dad in tow, and they already had a preconceived idea of what was going on. I couldn’t tell them that marijuana made me feel better or that skipping school had been forced upon me.”
Read the rest of Patterson’s story over at the Riverfront Times.