Mother of epileptic child starts organization for medical cannabis pediatrics

Brittany Warrior tries to be a beacon of hope for parents who feel there is nothing left for their children.

“We want them to know that they are not alone,” Warrior said.

Her message is one of sympathy and understanding. Checotah, Oklahoma’s mother, first noticed something wasn’t right with her daughter, Jaqie, when she was five months old.

“One day, out of nowhere, she got these little weird attacks,” Warrior said.

A doctor diagnosed Warrior’s girl with what she calls “a rare and potentially life-threatening form of epilepsy.” Soon the minor seizures started to pile up and Warrior said Jaqie was spasms 200 to 300 times a day.

“It was so hard to watch my baby suffer,” Warrior said. “She was so catatonic that she didn’t cry, she stopped holding her head up… she was literally trapped inside herself.”

For 15 months, Warrior said, doctors prescribed every pharmaceutical drug they could, but none of them stopped shaking.

“We ran out of drugs to try,” she said.

Or so she thought. As a last-ditch effort, a neurologist in Tulsa suggested a less conventional form of treatment — one that is not yet legal in Oklahoma.

“We can try cannabis in Colorado if you want,” Warrior told her, the neurologist said.

She drove her daughter to the Centennial State, where she was given cannabis oil, and two weeks later, Jaqi’s health improved dramatically. After medical marijuana was legalized in Oklahoma in 2018, Warrior was able to access her daughter’s medication without having to drive eight hours. But finding the right strain for Jaqie wasn’t easy.

“There were no pediatric cannabis counselors, no one to really ask for help. No resources,” she said.

After numerous phone calls and cries for help, Warrior said Jaqie is on cannabis treatment in Oklahoma that is working, but she’s looking for a better option.

Warrior launched CannaWarriors Helping Hands in January. The nonprofit helps parents navigate the costs of medical cannabis and connects them with child counselors.

“We have helped 27 children,” she said. “And we’d love to help a lot more.”

CannaWarriors has partnered with Jiffy Doctor, a medical cannabis referral service that helps provide pediatrics. Details about the service’s grand opening this weekend can be found on the Facebook page.

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