Hello, my name is Jennifer Hawkins and I am the founder and owner of allo blends. I'll try and keep this brief, but please feel free to contact me if you would like more details, I'm happy to share. My passion for cannabis and its health benefits came before the epilepsy, but it was the two of them that led to allo blends and my original product - Nectar.
As of April 2020, I have been seizure free for 5 yrs. without the use of prescription medication.
Development of Epilepsy – Life with Grand Mal
Seizures and Pharmaceuticals
My first grand mal/ tonic clonic seizure happened in my sleep when I was 20 years old. I'd been pretty healthy my whole life with the exception of having migraines since the age of 10. The doctors and test results provided no help in figuring out what was causing the seizures, but they were happy to start me on a pharmaceutical regimen that led to devastating times both physically and financially for me and my family.
The side effects of the seizure medications were awful! During the 16 years I had seizures I went on and off medications several times. I took different medications for a total of about 9 years. A brain scan after years of taking these medications showed there was still heavy seizure activity going on inside my brain.
The medication was only helping to control the physical signs on the outside. My seizures were still occurring and became a controlling
factor in all aspects of my life. The fear of the next seizure was all
consuming for me and my family. I could not work or be left alone in the
shower, bathroom, or anywhere – we never knew when the next seizure
would hit. My seizures were so severe, it was equivalent to receiving
an impact concussion every single time. It was affecting my overall
health and cognitive abilities. I had significant brain function losses
such as short term memory loss and difficulty learning and
maintaining information due to the seizures. I found it hard to express myself verbally, even my vocabulary was affected.
After being told by traditional medicine there was nothing else they
could do, I was offered an experimental brain surgery as a “last
resort”. The two hemispheres of my brain would be cut and
separated. The doctors said it was possible I could relearn my
motor skills, hopefully I would maintain my personality, and it may or
may not help the seizures.
I made the decision to be finished with traditional pharmaceutical
medications. That's when I realized I needed to go in a different direction! I am one of the lucky ones who has an amazing support system. I couldn't have gotten to where I am today without the love and reinforcement I received from my mom and husband. They were my pillars of strength!
Those Who Try Something Different… Find
I had used cannabis in many different ways to try to get the seizures to stop. This included smoking it, eating it, making extractions and juicing it. This was mainly done with THC marijuana, the kind that gets you 'high'. Although it was helpful with the recovery and side effects each time I had one, seizures were still happening. In all those years I never went longer than 2 1/2 months without a seizure , and I had as many as 5 in less than 3 days.
As I tried alternative therapies including chiropractic, acupuncture, supplements, laser treatments, neuro re-patterning, homeopathy, holistic neurology and others, I also continued to do research myself. I wanted to understand more about what was happening to me and find out why. Something caused this to happen, but what could I do about it? When I chose to take accountability for my own health and take action, positive changes started to happen. I worked with some wonderful doctors and licensed practitioners in alternative medicines and made some progress in my recovery time and mental capacities.
My research focused heavily on cannabis and how the brain works. Once I learned what the Endocannabinoid System (ECS) was and how it worked I knew I needed to continue down this path. I never accepted being told there was nothing that could be done and I needed to just deal with it. An enlightenment happened when I learned seizures were a symptom of a bigger problem, not the cause and seizures were at their core unique to each person.
Around 2012, I started to learn more about Cannabidiol (CBD), what I consider to be the master key to unlocking the ECS. The focus was still heavily on THC and information was hard to find. That has since changed and CBD is quickly becoming recognized for the incredible potential it has. At the time, it was very hard to obtain CBD as it was prohibitively expensive and there were concerns with potency and other added ingredients. This was all happening during the same time I was learning about how essential healthy fats are to the brain, changing my own eating habits and understanding nutrition's role in becoming healthy. Stories were starting to surface about peoples success with CBD, and a lot of them had to do with seizures. This was something I hadn't tried!
It was quickly realized there was a void in the market for quality CBD and other hemp products. I couldn't find what I wanted so I decided to make my own. Luckily I live in Colorado! After a long time searching I found a great source to get my base extract. It comes from hemp grown organically here in Colorado and extracted cleanly through a Supercritial Co2 Extraction Process. Further research showed me there needed to be the proper synergy and delivery system (the way it goes into your body and metabolizes) to receive all the benefits from the cannabinoids. The inclusion of healthy fats was an intricate part of solving this puzzle. It was the combination of the two I had not done before.
Nectar was born! Through the combination of 3 things I was able to cure my seizures! Ingesting enough necessary healthy fats through MCT's (Medium Chain Triglycerides) and LCT's (Long Chain Triglycerides), removal of harmful eating habits (by eating organic/non gmo, removal of processed sugars wherever possible), activation of my ECS with a high enough dose of CBD and as many other cannabinoids as possible. It is my opinion the potential for healing using the activation of the ECS System exists for everyone! My objective is to help others reach their goals in health and well being by providing the information and tools that worked for me. I understand what it feels like when you think you've tried everything and you just can't take it anymore. The decision to take action is very powerful and has to be made before change will happen.
Those Who Try Something Different... Find Something New!