Sometimes I am surprised by the power of old thoughts that pop up unexpectedly.
Last weekend I was at a festival browsing through the market stalls of polished stones, nature photos, handmade soaps, and other typical fare when I stopped in my tracks.
A booth selling marijuana products was next and I felt the awakening of a long-quiet part of my brain. I did the mental equivalent of a spit-take and realized this is the new reality here in Canada.
Marijuana will be legalized here this fall and already it is appearing everywhere. This particular stall was selling products – creams, powders, tinctures, edibles – at least I think it was because I didn’t get much closer. My heart was racing and I was inexplicably excited. I walked back and forth trying to get a better look and also trying to avoid it simultaneously.
I was like a twelve-year-old boy at his first school dance. I want to and I don’t.
There are new products to be marketed, and a lot of them have legitimate claims to health benefits. There seems to be this grey area of where health benefits end and recreation begins that my addiction sees as an invitation. Though alcohol was my vice of choice, I will tell you that I am tempted by everything that invites me to escape – even Gravol and cold medicine (though they’re great when needed for an actual illness).
I have spent nearly eight years learning to navigate a world full of alcohol and I feel like I have gotten the hang of it. Now a curve ball is coming, a new thing that is out there in the open and must be simultaneously accepted and avoided.
I am supportive of legalized marijuana and do believe that everyone has the right to do what they want with their own bodies. Likewise, it is my choice to live drug and alcohol free and my responsibility to sidestep temptations, marketing and messages that encourage me to indulge.
I used to feel angry at the ridiculous alcogenic marketing towards women – the bangle flasks, and baby onesies that say “Mommy’s Funner When She Drinks”, the purses built to hide bottles. Now I roll my eyes and scroll on.
I am feeling anxious at the thought of a whole new barrage of marketing to brace myself against, though I know I will get used to it, it’s nonetheless unnerving.
I am curious to hear from sober readers living in areas that already have legalization, if you feel it impacts your recovery and if the marketing feels as pervasive as the alcohol industry.
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