NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Andrea Houser is a mother of two boys, ages 14 and 10. She said all she wants to be is normal.
She’s been dealing with seizures from a rare form of Epilepsy since she was 19-years-old. She said she desperately hopes Tennessee’s latest medical marijuana passes, which legislators plan to introduce next week.
"I remember one time having a seizure and Gavin and Hayden standing over me, flipping out and crying," Houser said. "And them full well knowing what was happening, but not being able to do nothing about it. It's like you're above your own body, you know. It's hard to explain unless you've ever had one."
State Senator Steven Dickerson is also a practicing physician, who specializes in pain management. He said he has patients that, like Houser, could benefit from the legalization of medical marijuana.
He said it also offers an alternative to pain killers like opioids.
"[It’s] very frustrating for me to know as a physician and as a legislator that I think there's an alternative out there that could have better results and fewer side effects,” Dickerson said. “That's one of the reasons that I'm sponsoring this bill."
Houser said the only time in her adult life she hasn’t had seizures is the five years she used cannabis.
Wanting to stay on the right side of the law, Houser uses CBD oil, a type of hemp oil that doesn’t contain THC. THC is currently outlawed in Tennessee.
“It’s very heart breaking, you know,” Houser said. “Do I pick my life and me not seizing, or do I want to follow the law? It’s is a hard choice. I’m stuck between a rock and a hard spot, basically.”
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