rally cry

It continues to be a huge undertaking, this pioneering of the right type of medical marijuana for Calvin and for kids like him who suffer from intractable epilepsy and live in Maine.

Nine months ago I knew little to nothing about this topic. Now I understand that we must procure and grow the right strains of cannabis high in cannabidiol (CBD) and low in tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) so as to avoid the psychoactive qualities in resulting tinctures. I've discovered that high CBD strains are not the only strains that have proven effective for treating medically refractory epilepsy, but that a tincture of THCa, in its acidic, non-psychoactive form, can also help. I have learned things about pest control and soils and fertilizers and growing conditions and clones and decarboxylation and liquid chromatography and tincturing. I've come to understand that it is illegal to transport plants, seeds, clones or tinctures across state lines. I've grieved the death of a handful of children with Dravet syndrome who died from prolonged seizures before they had a chance to get medical marijuana. I've heard that over 100 families have uprooted themselves and moved to Colorado to obtain the kind of medicinal cannabis, yet unavailable in Maine, that will likely lessen or stop their children's seizures, improve their overall well-being, even save their lives. I've read about the corrupt history of marijuana prohibition and have witnessed, first hand, the ignorance of some who would blindly prevent our children from obtaining what might be the only kind of medicine that can help them thrive.

We are so close to getting medical marijuana for Calvin that I can practically taste it. I have been given the recipes, our chosen dispensary has the appropriate strains growing, I'm holding my medical marijuana caregiver card and Calvin has his patient card. I am reading and writing and raring to go.

But just yesterday, I learned of a bill recently introduced to the Maine legislature that will prohibit the sale, use and possession of kief, the resinous substance extracted from the cannabis flower which is used to create various highly therapeutic tinctures that can be precisely measured, titrated and administered to our children without psychoactive side effects.

Calvin, who is now suffering weekly seizures and who has pretty much hit the ceiling with regard to the doses and side effects of his two antiepileptic pharmaceutical drugs, will likely benefit in myriad ways from tinctures of medicinal cannabis, medical marijuana. Calvin cannot smoke marijuana, nor would I want him to. Besides, heating the bud by smoking or cooking it is what renders it psychoactive, in effect turning non-psychoactive THCa into psychoactive THC. Ingesting it in its raw form would not allow for the consistency and minute titration that epilepsy patients require. The only option for Calvin, and for kids like him, is to put it into a tincture that is made with kief.

So, my new battle is to ensure that this bill does not pass, or if it does, the language concerning the banning of kief gets eliminated. I'm contacting our state representatives (you can too) and the folks at our Department of Health and Human Services, who are likely ignorant about the bill's restrictive and harmful impact on our sick children. I'll also be meeting with Senator Angus King (Independent, ME) on January 31st to see if we can rally his support on important federal legislation regarding medical marijuana.

Readers, this is a rally cry. What can you do?



  1. OK Christy, teach me more. Why is kief a candidate for banning (other than general pot-hysteria)? Is it because it's related to hashish?

    1. madeleine, i think because it is super concentrated and therefore has the potential for abuse by recreational users.

  2. Hi Christy, I thought you may like to read this (in case you haven't): http://maddiegorman.wordpress.com. I am hoping this and more for Calvin. Jen