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A Great Grandma’s Journey with Cannabis and its Healing Powers » Emily Kyle, RD

Meet Charlene Arnold, a great-grandma and cannabis advocate who uses her own experiences to educate us about the therapeutic potential of cannabis. Join us as we hear about Charlene’s journey, learn about the benefits and challenges of using cannabis, and discover resources to help us make informed decisions about health.


  • Release Date: Wednesday, September 20, 2023
  • Episode Number: Season 1, Episode 51
  • Special Guest: Charlene Arnold

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Why You Will Love This Episode

Meet our special guest, Charlene Arnold, who has been a friend of cannabis since 7th grade, and today, she shares her personal journey with us.

She candidly admits that she has always preferred cannabis over alcohol, attributing this preference to the peaceful and relaxing effects of cannabis compared to the toxicity of alcohol.

For her, it’s all about kicking back, enjoying some good music, and letting the tranquility take over. Charlene is not just a recreational user of cannabis but also utilizes its medical benefits.

Her relationship with cannabis has taken on a new dimension as she battles arthritis in her back and knees. Charlene has found that cannabis helps manage her pain, reducing her dependency on heavy-duty pain meds and opiates.

In a recent visit to her primary doctor, she was pleasantly surprised to find out he was willing to fill out forms for a medical card – a testament to the shifting perspectives on cannabis.

Join us as we hear Charlene’s story, her perspective on the legalization of cannabis, and how it has become a significant part of her life.

Full Transcript

Charlene: I want to be remembered for being compassionate, caring, and good.

Announcer: Welcome to the Well With Cannabis Podcast, a show dedicated to telling the life-changing stories of those who live well with cannabis all while teaching you how to do the same. Meet your host, Emily Kyle, a registered dietitian nutritionist turned certified holistic cannabis practitioner. Emily changed her life for the better with the help of the cannabis plant, and now she’s committed to helping others do the same.

Tune in each week to hear heartwarming stories and gain the knowledge you need to feel connected, inspired, and supported on your own cannabis journey. Whether you’re a new cannabis consumer or a lifetime lover, you’ll benefit from these uplifting tales of real-life journeys that will show you how you, too, can live your best life well with cannabis.

Disclaimer: Hi there. Before we jump into today’s episode, I wanted to share a note on potentially sensitive content. The episodes on the Well With Cannabis Podcast are created for adult audiences only. We will, at times, cover sensitive topics, including but not limited to suicide, abuse, mental illness, sex, drugs, alcohol, psychedelics, and the obvious use of plant medicine. Explicit language may be used occasionally. Please refrain from watching or listening to the show if you’re likely to be offended or adversely impacted by any of these topics.

The information on this show is for informational and educational purposes only. It does not constitute medical advice. If any of the content on this podcast has brought up anything for you, please reach out or speak to a professional or someone you trust.

Emily: Hello, welcome back to another episode of the Well with Cannabis Podcast. I am excited to introduce you to our next guest, Char. She is here to talk about cannabis, both recreational and medical, and what it has meant in her life. So Char, welcome to the show. 

Charlene: Thank you. 

Emily: I’m excited you’re joining us today, and I would love for you to give us a little bit of a background on who you are, how you grew up, and what your experience has been with cannabis.

Charlene: I’ve been smoking cannabis since I was in the seventh grade. I am 66 years old. I didn’t have a really good upbringing, but I’ve learned a lot of boundaries that I’ve had to set with my family. I have two daughters, seven granddaughters, one grandson, and two great-granddaughters. From what I understand, I have two more great-grandchildren that I’m not allowed to know anything about. They were just born in December and February. 

Emily: Have you discussed cannabis with your family? 

Charlene: Oh, yes, I’ve always been very open about cannabis. It’s caused problems with my youngest daughter, the one I have issues with. Even with my primary doctors, I was very upfront even before it was legalized. I live in a small town, and most of my friends are a lot older, so they don’t know that I smoke. I received my award letter today, though, so it’s time to bring it out into the open and stop being scared.

Emily: Is that for your medical card? 

Charlene: Yes. 

Emily: How exciting! So you just recently applied and found out you got it? 

Charlene: Yes. She faxed the award letter to me this morning. So after the interview, we’re going to use it.

Emily: That’s so exciting! Have you been to a dispensary before? Is this your first time?

Charlene: Oh no. We’ve been to the dispensary. We’ve got one right here in the little town that I live in. And oh, yeah, we’ve been there. 

Emily: Awesome. So, tell us a little bit about what you use cannabis for and how it helps you in your life. 

Charlene: It’s a medicine, just like I take vitamins. It’s just been a part of my life for so long that I can’t imagine not doing it or not having it there. There have only been two times that I did not smoke, and that was when I was pregnant with my two children. I did not smoke during those times, but other than that, it’s really a big part of my life. It helps. I have anxiety; it helps to intensify my music and enhance my life. I have chronic back pain and knee pain. It doesn’t take it away, but it does help.

Emily: Have you ever been prescribed something else for your pain, or has cannabis always been a relief for you? 

Charlene: I actually have pain medication from my primary doctor that I take. The pain medication and the cannabis together don’t take the pain away but make it tolerable.

Emily: How about sleep? Does cannabis help you with sleep at all? 

Charlene: Yes. Yes. I do have sleeping disorders, too. And I smoke before going to bed to relax.

Emily: So let’s talk a bit about growing because for the past two years, you’ve been growing your cannabis plants, and I’d love to hear about how that’s going for you.

Charlene: We’ve tried for four years. In our first two years, all of our plants were male. That was really disappointing, but our 3rd year was wonderful. We had a lot. I can’t remember how much now, but it was a lot, and it got us through the year and this last year. This time, we actually purchased seeds. We’re working on figuring out when to start them in the house so that they’ll be nice and ready when it’s time to go outside.

Emily:  Oh, it’s so exciting. 

Charlene: Yes, it is. Oh, it was fun. 

Emily: Tell us a little bit about it. For people who’ve never grown a cannabis plant before, they don’t know how magical it is. 

Charlene: They’re beautiful. They’re a beautiful plant. And it’s fun to watch something that you plant grow and then get the fruit from it. You know that it’s yours, and you know what you put into it. We enjoyed it.

Emily: Yeah. It makes you stop and realize that you can grow this magical plant independently. It’s really exciting.

Charlene: Yes, and it’s nice that it’s legal now. It’s like you don’t have to be so paranoid.

Emily: Yeah, so what state are you in? 

Charlene: I’m in Nevada. 

Emily: Okay. 

Charlene: Yeah. I’m not far from Reno. 

Emily: Perfect. They have tons of dispensaries out there, don’t they? 

Charlene: Oh yeah. We have one in our little town. I think almost every town has at least one. 

Emily: That’s so exciting. 

Charlene: To go from where we started in high school to now, it’s amazing how far it’s come.

Emily: I’ll bet. Now, how do you feel about the stigma over all this time? Do you feel like it’s changed? Are you seeing benefits or progress? 

Charlene: I see progress. They’ve legalized it. That’s progress. But some of the older people still haven’t come aboard. For instance, when my mom found out that I smoked cannabis, she told me that I was going to get into heroin. I’m the perfect case that it’s not true. I was around a lot of drugs in high school. It was all there, but I didn’t want to do any of them because I was happy just smoking. That stigma is so wrong. You’re not going to wind up on heroin if you do some cannabis. That’s ridiculous.

Emily: Those stigmas, though, they have been pushed, especially in the older generation, they’ve been pushed for so long that it’s so hard for people to let go of those ideas. And that’s why I’m so glad that you’re here sharing this with us to show people that cannabis users are just normal, everyday people just living better lives.

Charlene: Exactly. I’m glad you’re doing what you’re doing. 

Emily: Oh, thank you. 

Charlene: You’re educating, and it’s wonderful. 

Emily: Thank you so much. Education is so important as people gain more exposure to cannabis. I feel like it would make everything easier for people if we had this information in a high school class or something. But we’re not that lucky. If I can help a few people along the way and educate them to start their own journey, it’s well worth it.

Charlene: I say a good job. 

Emily: Thank you. Now, I ask all my guests the same four questions. Are you ready for them? 

Charlene: Yes. 

Emily: Alright, the first one. What are you most proud of in your life? 

Charlene: There’s a few things. There’s not one in particular. I’d have to say my 13-year relationship. My friends, my daughter, who is a recovering heroin addict, and then being able to set boundaries with my youngest daughter and not have a relationship with her. 

Emily: That’s a lot of things to be proud of. Now, this is everybody’s least favorite question: What would your life look like without cannabis? 

Charlene: Like I said earlier, I can’t imagine it because it’s been a part of my life for so long. I really can’t picture it. At all. 

Emily: It’s crazy. I know. It’s like you spend so much time with the plant. It becomes part of who you are. 

Charlene: It really does. It really does. It’s a beautiful plant. 

Emily: And it’s so lucky to have found it and to have had it for your whole life and throughout adulthood. It’s a nice friend to have.

Charlene: Yes, it is. I agree with you. 

Emily: Now, if you could go back 10, 20 or even 30 years ago and give yourself a piece of advice related to cannabis or not, what would it be? 

Charlene: I’d have to say I set my boundaries against toxic family members earlier. Be true to yourself. 

Emily: That’s perfect. 

Charlene: Oh, I’m just getting emotional.

Emily: Oh, I’m so sorry. 

Charlene: And don’t settle in relationships for the wrong reasons. And that would be it. 

Emily: That is such good advice. Very last question. If you could be remembered for just one thing in the cannabis space, what would it be?

Charlene: I want to be remembered for being compassionate, caring, and a good person. All I could say would be those. 

Emily: Oh, I feel it. Thank you so much for sharing that here with us and for sharing your experience with cannabis and what it means to you in your life. I really appreciate that. 

Charlene: Thank you for choosing me. This has been very delightful. 

Emily: Oh, I’m so glad. Thank you so much. I really appreciate it. 

Announcer: Congratulations, you’ve finished another episode of the Well With Cannabis Podcast and are one step closer to discovering how you, too, can live well with cannabis.

Thank you for listening in today. We hope this episode has been a helpful and informative one. Please visit for more information on today’s show, show notes, guest information, recipes, and other resources.

If you want more support and encouragement on your cannabis journey, please consider joining the private Well With Cannabis Community. In this group, you can connect with like-minded individuals focused on improving their health and wellness through cannabis.

Join the group today to continue your journey of wellness together!

Cover art for the Well With Cannabis Podcast featuring Emily Kyle standing in a cannabis garden.

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