(Photo: Alamy Stock Photo)
By: Alanna Shingler, Editor
Note from the author: This is the second of a three-part series on Regis students’ interactions with drugs. It is highly important to me to relay Robyn’s* story without judgment and without blame. I want to sincerely thank Robyn for so authentically sharing her story with me.
She had smoked three to five times a day since she was in high school, but during her sophomore year at Regis, Robyn had no choice but to quit marijuana completely. She was diagnosed with Cannabinoid Hyperemesis Syndrome, a painful condition caused by heavy, long-term cannabis use.
After spending ten days in the hospital, Robyn was told that she could never smoke again. Unsurprisingly, stopping all marijuana use cold-turkey was a less than pleasant experience for Robyn. The most difficult part was not being able to sleep without smoking, although she believes she would have had worse symptoms of withdrawal if she wasn’t in the hospital for so long. Feeling lost without weed, Robyn quickly discovered a new love: acid.
So she got really into it. “I like the way it expands my mind. I know that sounds super cliche . . . but it honestly does,” she explained. I watched Robyn’s face light up when she told me about how much she enjoys reading while on acid. When she was still able to smoke, she loved reading when she was high. Now she savors the feeling she gets when she reads while coming down from a trip. To prove her point, she confessed she read David Foster Wallace’s novel, Infinite Jest twice to understand it better - once while sober and a once while on acid.
Even though she enjoyed tripping, Robyn knew that too much of anything can turn be harmful. She took acid every couple of weeks for two months until she decided it was time to take a step back. The negative consequences of overusing drugs are observed in one of her roommates who
drinks, smokes, and trips on acid as often as possible (once a week or so). She considers him to be “severely depressed” and held back by his habits. “I saw what it did to (my roommate) and realized I don’t want to be the person who trips alone,” she disclosed.
In retrospect, Robyn thinks it’s for the best that she has stopped smoking weed. And while she still enjoys acid, she stresses the importance of moderation. She reflects, “I think everyone does more than they should at some point. That seems to be an inherent human trait. It seems like almost everyone will take too much at some point before they realize they need to take a step back.”
*name changed to maintain anonymity