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The Scariest Time I Got High

– Paulo Pangilinan

I know we’re all no strangers to suggestions like “c’mon, one more drink,” or “c’mon, one more hit,” even “c’mon, one more bite.” It’s just one more, right? Well for me, that “one more” became a lot more than I had bargained for. This is the first time I ever had an edible.

Let’s set the stage for a little bit. This was years ago maybe 6-7 years back, and during this time the most I knew about cannabis was that it was green, it smelled kind of funky, you had to ingest it, and it could be baked into candies or pastries. I had only been smoking for maybe 2-ish years, and heavily on and off of it at this point as I had only smoked with my cousin for bonding. Back in those days, California’s medical and recreational marijuana had a much higher limit for milligrams of THC in an edible. (For reference, some of the strongest edibles you may find in California, as of the time of me writing this cap off at 1000 mg of THC). Friends and friends of friends were buying or selling homemade brownies for dirt cheap and they were just eating whole cookies or brownies because there wasn’t any real way for them to measure out milligrams of THC; nobody had that kind of equipment most people were still making their own cannabutter out of shake. So all I had seen, in terms of edible consumption, was the whole edible being eaten in one go.

Around this time I was maybe about 3 months into my new job at a local smoothie shop. I had a really good group of coworkers around me who became good friends and to this day I still try to check up on every now and then. Among that group was one of my supervisors, Zee. Zee put me on game for a lot of things when it came to the world of cannabis and I absorbed that knowledge every time we smoked after work. One day I asked him about how edibles were and told him about how pretty much everyone at my school was devouring edibles left and right.

Zee laughed and said “If you want some real edibles, I gotchu. I’ll see you when we clock in,”. At the end of my shift the following day, Zee handed me 3 sealed bags of cookies. All he said was “Don’t eat them all in one go,” before he headed off to the casino for his monthly casino night. I took the edibles and looked at the packaging. It was pretty comical and intriguing for me. It had a cow with a third-eye and a bowler hat as one of the logos. The rest of the packaging reminded me of old-timey Western wanted bounty posters or advertisements for miracle remedies (like snake oil). On the back was a man drawn in the same style as the art in the front, vomiting and falling into a pool of it. There was a big warning, which I’ll be honest, I barely read. I looked at the bottom and read the amount of THC on it, and then packed it away and drove home.

After I parked the car I took a look at the edibles again. I looked at the back and skimmed through the warning again. It all seemed like a bunch of the regular warning and caution labels, “Don’t drive while on this,”, “Don’t operate machinery while on this,” etcetera etcetera. I didn’t have anything else to do for the day so I opened up one of the packages and ate half of one of the cookies. It was just an enormous chocolate chip cookie, with the entire back of it coated in chocolate. It tasted pretty good too. For the most part, it tasted like an actual cookie outside of small tastes of cannabis. I went inside, drank some milk and waited for it to hit.

While I waited, I was reminded of all the times I had seen anyone eat an edible. All my friends ate all their edibles in one go, Zee, ate all his edibles in one go. I took the half-eaten cookie out the bag and thought, hey, one more bite and I ate the rest of the cookie. As soon as I finished eating the other part, I felt slightly queasy in my stomach and then I realized what was happening. It was nice at first, the exact strength of high that I was looking for, but it quickly went bad. After the first hour and a half, it slowly went from uplifting and relaxing to discomforting and nauseating. My head was banging like I glugged a half gallon of whiskey with no chase or meal to line my stomach. I closed my eyes because everything was just too much to look at, almost like sensory overload. My heart was beating like a Taiko drum, and I felt the pores on my forehead fill with sweat. I literally crawled my way to the bathroom, and propped my head up on the rim of the toilet, gasping for air. I didn’t need to puke but something in my head told me that maybe, it might happen and I should just be ready.

I was just begging for the high to stop at this point, wondering if it ever would, and wishing I could just eat something to fix it. In desperation I pulled the wrapper out to see if maybe the brand had some guidelines or things to help out someone who ate too much. I looked at the dosage again and it was at 1250mg THC. I moved my eyes along the old timey packaging up to the cartoon man on the back, and just stared at it. I thought that I was pretty much the same as the man on the back, down on his stomach and knees, just trying to fight it off. After a few hours of just me laying there and my head propped up on the toilet, it finally wore off and I fell asleep. I did not throw up, but damn. That edible kicked my ass. I’ve never had an edible hit me like that since then, and I look back on that time like a battle-scarred veteran.

Nowadays, my tolerance is much higher and my general use and consumption has gone up. I use a lot of THC concentrates which I’m sure the Past Me would be shocked to see. Another thing Past Me would’ve been shocked about is my intake of CBD. Back then, I had thought CBD to be pretty much useless, but now I feel pretty stupid for thinking and believing that. CBD is actually really good for you and your high. It’s common for people to use CBD when they feel like they’re “greening out” (too much THC, pretty much blacking out with alcohol but with THC) and it brings them back down to Earth. I like to use CBD as a THC enhancer. Every now and then when I’m feeling really good or I’ve got a day off, I take my normal dabs or flower bowls, let it sit in and then I mix my THC concentrate or flower with whatever CBD I have on me. Whether it’s a few of the Alive and Kicking CBD cigs, or some CBD concentrate I picked up online, either one works just as good as the other when mixing with THC. Without a doubt, this combo is what gets me the most high. I could take dabs all day and not knock out but if I start mixing CBD in and try to do it all day I’ll be asleep until next election cycle.

Instead of a headbanging feeling like the one I had when I got too high off the edible, it’s like a wave that floats to the top of your head and then rushes down like a waterfall. It’s pretty much like the reverse of that horrible edible high I had. It hit me in all the same areas just much more pleasantly and calming. Getting too high is a thing. I’m sure we’ve all gone there before, and sometimes we don’t mind getting there again. But just remember if you ever need a little something to bring you back down to Earth, try a little CBD, it’ll get ya right.