Lately my mind keeps drifting to The Emperor’s New Clothes, and not because of Donald Trump–though to be sure there’s plenty to unveil there–size aside.
The bill for my own outlandish outfit came today. The outfit I wore on Valentines Day. The one that resulted in an ambulance ride and Emergency Room care.
The one that apparently didn’t demand any of that.
My heart insisted otherwise.
Why then did companions laugh?
Medical personnel smirk?
Why did Facebook friends write:
This is hilarious.
You were trashed.
This is the case of The Emperor’s New Clothes, I said, only I wasn’t sure which part I was playing.
I’ve since read Chapter 9 of Chocolate to Morphine, Everything You Need To Know About Mind-Altering Drugs, and apparently what I insisted was so, wasn’t:
- Overdoses of cannabis are unpleasant, but not medically threatening.
My experience of imminent death from an edible, however, is validated by a 911 call–from a police officer–who ate the pot brownies he confiscated from an arrest:
To my horror, I find myself laughing. Relieved by his suffering. Of my own.
Some other cannabis (worth mentioning and personally affirming) facts from the textbook on mind-altering drugs :
- The effects of marijuana are hard to describe because they are so variable — more so than those of other drugs.
- The main problem with oral use is overdose.
- Taken by mouth, rather than smoked, marijuana is a more powerful drug, slower to come on, with longer-lasting effects.
- Marijuana can cause illusions of time and space.
- People can become extremely disoriented and delirious, as if suffering from a high fever, which is often followed by stupor and hangover.
(Chocolate to Morphine, Everything You Need To Know About Mind-Altering Drugs by Andrew Weil MD and Winifred Rosen, 2004)
As I look down at the bill for service–more than a thousand dollars–for emergency care that was not medically necessary–I feel ashamed.
When they released me from the hospital, I was told that I didn’t have to worry–that I just had to let it wear off. But the truth is, knowing what I know now, I would still seek medical care if I felt the way I did that day–by far the worst day of my 52 years.
I wanted to be cool. I didn’t want to embarrass myself. But my responsibility to my life force trumped all that, and anything anyone else had to say.
Which brings my mind back to our would be Emperor.
Farce or real threat to our democracy?