Meet Joni Whiting. Joni is a reluctant warrior for medical marijuana. You see after Joni’s daughter Stephanie was diagnosed with melanoma in 2000, she underwent several experimental surgeries, and consumed fistfuls of ‘promising’ pharmaceutical drugs – to no avail.
As Joni watched her daughter’s face slowly disfigured, one inch at a time, and witnessed the agony she was made to endure, Joni could only sit back and watch as her daughter wasted away. Sick from this aggressive form of cancer.
Suffering, sad and dejected. It was there in the hospital that a DR. Suggested to Stephanie’s mother that she might consider allowing her daughter to try medical marijuana. Trapped between fear for her daughter’s health and the real possibility of criminal prosecution should she follow the good doctor’s orders, Joni declined the advice and continued to watch her daughter waste away.
After Joni received the disheartening news from Stephanie’s oncologist, that her daughter only had six months to live, Stephanie continued to live strong and suffered through unimaginable pain. Regardless of the mad amounts of Oxycodone and Oxycontin consumed, Stephanie’s pain was off the chart – receiving little to no relief from her mind bending discomforts. As Stephanie’s extreme nausea caused the wasting syndrome many with cancer are familiar with, Stephanie’s siblings stepped in and begged their mother to allow Stephanie to use medical marijuana, to lessen the pain and hopefully increase her appetite.
When Joni refused to allow medical marijuana to be used in her home, Stephanie’s siblings again showed their true love for their suffering sister. Removing her from her mother’s home, so that Stephanie could use the medical marijuana they believed would help her.
When Stephanie visited her mother several days later, she appeared healthier than Joni had seen her in several months. After going days, weeks and what seemed like months without being able to hold down food, or have an appetite - she was now eating three meals a day and showing normal interest in food.
While Joni was reluctant and fearful over the idea of her daughter using medical marijuana at first, after witnessing her daughter’s miraculous weight gain and improvement in overall health, she quickly became a cheerleader for medical marijuana in her community.