I am perfectly aware that I do not owe an explanation, a defense, or anything when it comes to anything I post online. I know what I'm doing. I understand the possible repercussions of simply having an online account. I understand I am a large social media influencer, specifically for the yarn industry. I, definitely, know that I have two children at home. But guys... let me tell you an epiphany I had recently and you can further choose to agree or disagree with the person I am on and offline.
Wait, for those of you have NO idea what I'm talking about, here is the image I originally posted on Instagram and then soon on my personal Facebook page:
So here's what happened..
The short story:
My amazingly talented friend, Ashlie Rene Gonzales, posted on Instagram looking for someone who wanted to model for content creation for one of our local dispensaries, Preserve Oregon (must be 21 years or older to visit this website). I DM'd her and let her know I'd love to do the shoot with her. A few days later we reconnected with some theme ideas and then she was at my house a couple days later to shoot. I had an amazing time with my friend for a couple of hours and took a nap after she left. I woke up refreshed and got back to work.
The long story:
I live in the state of Oregon, and have lived here for the last 23 years after moving here when I was 8 years old from Washington state. Cannabis became recreationally legal in 2014 for our state. I chose to use cannabis for a multitude of reasons, all of which I owe to share none of them with you. However, for the sake of conversation, I will. I have battled undiagnosed anxiety, depression and C-PTSD for most of my life. Some of the symptoms I suffer with most is lack of appetite, social anxiety, overthinking, reclusion, and so many more unhealthy mental struggles. The source of these issues will be discussed another day, but for now just know that I'm a human, whether or not the perception of me you have created of me matches that.
After some incredibly debilitating back issues during my pregnancy with my son, and for many weeks after, I was couch-ridden and my husband took the role of not only being the sole source of income for our family, but also would prepare lunches and dinner before we left for work because he knew how painful it was for me to walk and stand, let alone be with the kids and all that comes with that. I had a lot of guilt for so long but just physically couldn't move. I visited my doctor and bawled that I needed to be able to just simply do the things I needed to do to care for my family. After going through weeks of physical therapy, x-rays, blood tests, diet changes... the doctor handed me a prescription for painkillers and muscle relaxers.
I went back into my car, looked at the prescription and cried even more. I did NOT want to have to lean on prescription pain pills to be "normal", knowing full well that I have family history, and personal history, of addictive behavior and knew I wouldn't be able to be the person I wanted to be while taking those pills. Instead, I talked with my husband and told him I wanted to try cannabis instead because it was much less addictive, much less harmful to the body, and simply a natural substance that has been proven to have an outrageous amounts of benefits. So, that's what I did. I did not pick up my prescription at the pharmacy and, instead, visited one of our local dispensaries the first week it was open for recreational sales.
I will never ever say that I was cured from my symptoms from my cannabis consumption. However, I was able to have moments of peace and appetite and simple normalcy when I chose to indulge and didn't feel like I was being consumed by my mind. Of course everything has always been stored away and out of reach of my children. To be honest, my kids don't even know as it hasn't been a conversation that has arisen. I choose to partake away from any area that they spend time in and use absolute responsible perspective in terms of consumption.
This is my choice. As a 31-year old woman, this is something I choose to do in my private life. Based on three decades of experiences and mental healing and growth, I have simply reached a point where I have tapped out on playing the character that makes everyone comfortable. That's just simply not me. It's not, it never has been. I've been using cannabis for many years and none of you knew, nor has it negatively impacted my ability to perform my tasks and responsibilities. I just finally shared something with you that you didn't know before, but I'm still the same person I was last week.
You have full control of your reactions and opinions. You are free to disagree with my choice and you are free to not support me or my business. You are welcome to let me know your opinions and why you think I shouldn't share that part of my life with the public. Just as you have these opportunities, I have the opportunity to be authentic or play a character and I choose to no longer play a character. There are MANY yarn influencers in the industry and we are all very different. Thank GOODNESS we are all different. We have all lived different lives, experienced different situations, have different traditions and customs, and even like different kinds of music. After nearly a decade of showing up for you online, yesterday I chose to show up even more.
This is me. Take it or leave it. There is a LOT more to me that my choice in my down time, but if that simple fact is bothersome enough to blind you from my other qualities, that's ok. I care about you and always have and always will.
To everyone who showed up yesterday, reached out, commented, texted, shared, etc... I appreciate you beyond words. I'm here to show up as my TRUE authentic self from here on out, even if it ends up ruffling feathers. I'm HERE for you and hope to continue to inspire you to be YOUR authentic self on and offline. I would never ask or expect anyone to think that the way I live my life is the right way to live because that's simply not true. My life is my choice and your life is your choice.
Now check out these amazing photos thanks to Ashlie Rene and Preserve Oregon and be sure to pop over to their pages and give them a TREMENDOUS amount of support. Cheers to real life, yo!