This is my story and I am not alone | New Approach Missouri


This is my story and I am not alone

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My name is Lonnie, I live in Central Missouri, and I have an important story to share with you. In 2007, my life was forever changed when I had to undergo a miraculous 18-hour surgery to remove a tumor the size of a softball from my brain. In the following months, I would endure months of rehabilitation, learning how to walk and move the right side of my mouth again. Today, despite a second surgery, a tumor the size of a walnut is still attached to both my brainstem and optic nerve and unfortunately, surgery is no longer an option.

While I am truly grateful to be alive, my quality of life has plummeted since that fateful day. The trauma to my brain caused me to develop epilepsy, severe nausea and vomiting, loss of appetite, fatigue, dizziness, headaches, difficulty sleeping, irritability, and the list goes on. To manage, I take multiple medications every day. But they produce side effects that are intolerable, and don’t even control my seizures! In fact, I was once prescribed a medication for my nausea that caused me to have a seizure. Now, I am often too hesitant to leave the house for fear that I may become suddenly ill or have a seizure in public.

It is these events that have brought me to advocate for medical cannabis in Missouri. Without access to medical cannabis I, and all those who suffer as I do, will continue to live in pain and fear. I have watched patients lay needlessly in pain, witnessed the unforgettable pain on the faces of their families and seen many develop an addiction to the painkillers they
were prescribed.

I am only one among the thousands of Missourians who lives with debilitating illnesses and requests care that we have been denied for years. We are in need of compassionate care. We want be able to have a conversation with our doctors about all of the possibilities for treatment, including medical cannabis. We deserve a better quality of life, and we have run out of options.