medical-marijuana-cannabis-150x150Glenn Christman has been taking care of Nashville area trees for 30 years as The Gentle Arborist.

” Arborculture is the care of trees, speaking for the tree in the work that needs to be done, from feeding and installation to removal with big cranes – that’s my job.” he says.

We’re sitting in his living room and Glenn’s on a couch which is now his bed and office, situated with computer, phones, trays and medicines around him as he continues to work through his illness. Glenn is also an herbalist and has used both modern chemo therapy/radiation and alternatives in his pursuit of health and recovery.

Q: “What is your medical condition and why is medical marijuana important?”

“I was diagnosed in January of 2011 with prostate cancer, which had already metastasized, mostly to my sacrum. So I did a year of natural and home remedies, seemed to be getting better, but the numbers were going bad, so I’ve been on chemical, modern medicine kind of stuff for the past year, yesterday, it’s been a year.

My PSA (prostate specific antigen) numbers were going through the roof. This antigen lets you know that your prostate is under stress. There are some activities and natural things that will do that, but when it’s high, steady and maintained, it’s almost a sure sign of cancer.”

Q:  “Tell us about your treatment highs and lows.”

“My main therapy is testosterone depravation, the major side effect of which is depression, bottomless… overwhelming depression, hours and hours of crying, days of crying.”

Q: “How do you deal with that?”

“The best thing that I have is marijuana. A lot of times, when I smoke it really opens me up to the sadness. I really feel it deeply and cry a whole lot, but then it seems to lift me out of it after not too much time. Marijuana helps get my lungs working and I’m breathing from crying and the pot’s opening me up.  I’m feeling my body energetic, feeling that expand and the sadness starts to dissipate, and I start to see more clearly instead of darkness everywhere… and so I cry.”

Q: “What does your doctor say about crying and smoking pot?”

“He said best thing you can do is stay high and cry a lot. Those weren’t his words, but when I repeated those words back to him, he sat there and shook his head yes, and said, “Yes, that’s exactly it. That’s working for you.” And that’s my Oncologist, I also have therapist, who agrees with that and I have a palliative care doctor, who is really interested in my marijuana use, because he has other patients that use pot, he knows little about it, and find me easy to talk to.  I have gone to see him stoned and he got a real kick out of that.”

“What marijuana does for me is tune me to a more subtle, energetic state of being alive, more peaceful, more open to experience loveliness and beauty, and it’s really that that brings me out of my depression. It’s the beauty and loveliness that flows in us, around us, and through us.”

Glenn Christman is also an activist who has met and discussed environmental issues with Tennessee State Legislators in the past. He knows how busy they are and when a medical marijuana bill makes it to the legislature, he’s enthusiastic about speaking of the positive benefits and helping to change laws about medical marijuana in Tennessee.

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