1. Tell us about yourself—where you work, what you do,and how you became a budtender.

My name is Mandyjane. I am a Manager & Cannabis Consultant at 99 High Tide in Malibu. My focus on cannabis as my career came about when my mother was diagnosed 11 years ago with psoriasis of the liver, liver cancer, and struggling with mental illnesses. I wanted to find an alternative to the painkillers and challenges my mom was having with pharmaceuticals while sustaining her clarity of mind and finding ways to heal her ailments.

We began with Rick Simpson Oil- Phoenix Tears. I was taught by my roommates the ropes of deep, organic treatment of how cannabis medicine can be even more powerful in healing than chemo. It was a total experiment every step in the first year. From what I view as “dehydrating” tumors to finding balance in her day to day state of mind, we found a bond that we had never shared before.

My mom was now present with me, able to have full conversations while laughing pain-free. She was lighthearted and functioning when the RSO was in her system. As time went by, doctors explored different reasons why their treatment was working so well. My mom unveiled the secret after they told her to continue doing whatever she was doing. Then the rejection came to us after the doctors discovered it was cannabis. Marijuana. THC. A highly illegal substance that is too radical and dangerous.

So as we explored hemp, her path to healing halted. While we explored alternatives, I met several people (now countless people and some now angels) who would change our circumstances for the better. About five years in, 99 High Tide came as an opportunity to explore the knowledge and open doors cannabis would offer us. It was a whole team of women and men who cared for the plants, for our families, and our wellness. This shop appealed to others who also needed to be welcomed back to their bodies, the ocean, plants, and spirit. My family became open to cannabis only after studying and learning about positive education on self-taught experiences. My mom had the capability to push through year after year as we explored what THC-A (from pure juicing and tinctures) could do. THC from the vape pens kept her appetite up while flower gave her laughter. The topicals provided calming to her shaking nervous system and wounds. Edibles allowed her to eat while giggling over conversations. She was the happiest and more at peace than ever when cannabis was present in her system. Nothing could take the place of it. It was our missing link after so many years. I’m so grateful for the path it’s provided for my family and me.

2. What’s the number one thing you tell canna-curious customers who want to try products for the first time?

I always let my patients and customers know that their experience will be different from others. Everybody is different! Experiment and explore what works with you. Less is more, and do your research with us. Since this is a field that has been openly discussed in recent years, scientists are just beginning to share their findings and statistics.

3. Describe your proudest moment as a budtender -or what you like most about your job.

My proudest moment as a cannabis consultant has come from two dear patients. These two men made it their mission to beat their cancer while providing information and support to others in need.

Bill Barlow has since passed away, but his family leads his legacy with their topical line Wild Bill’s. Bill created this quick-acting pain relief topical after struggling with neuropathy.

The other patient is a teacher and continues to support his community through education on cannabis wellness.

4. What do you like most about Kiva Confections? What should consumers know about our edibles and what sets them apart from others?

Kiva has been a consistent and trustworthy company for years now. I know their products will have even dosing, taste delicious, and provide a high that brings the good vibes. When it comes to the variety, you cannot go wrong.

5. Do you have a favorite Kiva product, and why?

My favorites are the Peppermint Terra Bites for the chill days hanging in the sun painting in my backyard or the CBD Dark Chocolate 5:1 Bar for relieving my cycle cramps and keeping my head straight.

6. What is your hope for cannabis and the future?

My hope with cannabis is a shed of this stigma in the next year. As cannabis consultants, we are not doctors and if medical practitioners were able to receive an education with cannabis there would be a breakthrough with healing across the world. My hope is that more people will ask about the medicinal benefits. It pays to reach out to our senators and members of congress on behalf of cannabis needs. Our voices matter, and farmers’ voices matter. Whether you’re exploring CBD or enjoying THC, or both, bring your questions to your doctors and elected officials. We are the change we wish to see in the world. May it be with high vibes always.