Stories from the Movement
Irvina Booker was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis in 1992. In addition to debilitating physical symptoms, Irvina was faced with the emotional challenges of losing her ability to walk. She often felt like a burden to her friends and family.
None of the medication Irvina’s doctors prescribed alleviated her severe muscle spasm pain. The medications also had harsh side effects including nausea, vomiting, vertigo, headaches, dizziness, numbness, and burning.
In 2003, a friend battling MS suggested Irvina try medical marijuana. Irvina recalls, "I doubted the results marijuana could bring me. I had never used recreational drugs and I didn't want to break the law; but, as the pain grew worse, out of desperation I tried marijuana. The effects were nothing short of miraculous."
Irvina's daughter remembers the difference medical marijuana made in her mother's life: "It hurt to see my Mom suffering. Despite taking all the medications the doctor prescribed, she was still in constant pain. It broke my heart to remind my son, who loves to jump on his grandma’s lap, ‘be careful, grandma's legs hurt.’ Using medical marijuana, my Mom’s pain is dramatically reduced; this drug has changed our lives."
Medical marijuana alleviates many of Irvina’s most painful MS symptoms. New Jersey does not permit the medicinal use of marijuana, so Irvina, her friends and family, are forced to break the law to ease her suffering. No one should be forced to make such a choice.
Why should New Jersey allow seriously ill patients access to medical marijuana? Because it's the compassionate and the common sense response to suffering.