Taylor McQuoid | Dancer / Aerialist / Coach
Taylor has danced professionally her entire life, traveling all over the world sharing her talents! She began training as an aerialist in 2010, and recently settled home back in Phoenix. After returning to Arizona at the end of a contract on board a cruise ship as a dancer and aerialist, she learned about the medical marijuana program. It wasn’t until 2018 that she began to use cannabis for herself. She prides herself in being an open book and frequently talks about her past. PTSD, anxiety, and depression are just a few things that she regularly struggles with, and cannabis has allowed her to manage the debilitating symptoms she was experiencing, both emotionally and physically. Here’s her story!
When did you first try cannabis? Describe the experience.
I first tried cannabis back in my youth, as I’m sure many current cannabis users did. Back then however, I was completely unaware of the benefits it offers. I began to use cannabis again in 2017, and decided to obtain my medical card at that time.
My experience deciding to get my card, and the whole process, was quite a long one, but simple to start. I was suffering from a few different things. I have some pretty serious hormone issues, one of which was a 2.5mm tumor on my pituitary gland. This alone caused havoc on my system. Among the hormone issues, I also deal with the aches and pains of being a professional dancer and aerialist. Additionally, I have pretty major anxiety, depression and PTSD issues that I manage every day. I knew, when I finally learned about the program, that this was what I needed to do. Once I made the decision, I found a clinic in Chandler that I trusted, applied, and was qualified thereafter. This is where the process began to take sometime.
Going into this program not knowing much about cannabis, was a little intimidating. Ok, it was actually really intimidating. There was so much I didn’t know, and to this day, there is still so much to learn. It took a lot of trust in the bud tenders I would meet, and a lot of trial and error nights. I visited as many places as I could to find the right “fit” for me. I wanted to find someone, and a place, that was willing to not only listen to me, but who would help me figure out exactly what I needed!
When I first started, I made sure to find nights that I could try different things and do so in a safe space. Once my tolerance was built up a little bit, and once I found strains that I liked and disliked; I was able to find products that I preferred. This is when I was introduced to RSO, which quickly became a game changer. I’m proud to say that as of right now, my tumor is gone, my hormone issues have balanced out, and I attribute a huge piece of it all to cannabis, healthy habits, working with my doctors and tons of self care. I know cannabis played a huge role in my healing however, always speak to a medical professional about your needs! :) my healing was my own, and not everyone is the same!
What is your relationship with cannabis today? How has it evolved over the years?
I’m a daily user and have a full time job where I need to be aware of my surroundings, people, and more. I’m still a professional dancer, aerialist and coach. Because I was able to take the time needed to build up my tolerance, I know how to use cannabis at different times of the day to achieve the help I need without losing control of myself. Cannabis, in every way, is my go to for healing. I do supplement with other things like CBD if needed, especially if I accidentally take too much, or get a little too high.
When I first started, I stuck to mainly smoking flower. Now, I use cannabis in every way. I love edibles at night to help me sleep and I love to use my Oura by Kandypens to smoke my concentrates. I still enjoy smoking flower at night as well, but I mainly stick to concentrates and edibles at night. I do prefer to micro dose during the day if I have things to do that involve work or functioning around people, but if I have nothing to do, I smoke at home to help me stay focused!
Does cannabis use help you in your professional career? If so, how? If not, how does it help in other ways?
Oh my goodness, it helps me tremendously! Aside from helping me manage my pain, injuries, and more.. it helps me manage my mood. It helps me find creative energy, and it helps to calm me down. I know that if I need to be creating a piece to perform, I can use a good old fashioned sativa strain to help boost that creative flow! I also know that if I wake up and I’m a little anxious, I can find a good hybrid to find that happy medium. I use THC/CBD salves and balms for aches and pains. There are obviously times where safety comes first, especially as an aerialist. In those moments, I am very careful about what I use and how much. I typically will hit my pen once the morning of, or bring it with me for a small micro dose, but that is only because my tolerance has been built up enough to allow for that. I highly recommend building your tolerance first before using throughout the day if you have to work around people or do things that require you to be safe in specific situations.