By William Branum
The transition from military to civilian life was the toughest military mission I had ever been on. I went from being surrounded by a TEAM of World Class Professionals who challenged me every day to NO TEAM, NO PURPOSE, and NO MISSION.
I’ve spent my entire adult life in the military and 23 of those 26 years as a Navy SEAL. As a SEAL, every morning I woke up, knew what I was going to do and with whom I would do it. I was surrounded by a badass team with a badass mission. Then in the summer of 2018, it was gone.
My nightly routine consisted of just one glass of vodka on the rocks to turn off the noise in my head. One glass turned into another, and another and so on. Eventually the noise would reduce enough for me to go to sleep. This habit started before my retirement, but had definitely intensified after I retired. I had to drink myself into a drunken mess to quiet my mind, slow down, and be able to rest.
I had heard of CBD oil while I was on active duty but wasn’t about to risk putting my final years in the military or my Top Secret Clearance in jeopardy. I am also a child of Nancy Reagan’s War on Drugs, “Just Say No!” so I was hesitant to try it. A year after my retirement, I was in Virginia and had lunch with a former SEAL Team mentor. I told him about my interest in CBD and discussed purchasing it while I was in town. I was still unfamiliar with its benefits but was curious to know more. Coincidentally he owned some and gave me a bottle.
That night I noticed that I slept a little better and woke up a little less agitated as I had in the previous months. Over the next 30 days with continued use of the CBD Oil, I felt small increments of improvement in my attitude as well as unexpected improvements in pain management. Some of the sharp stabbing pain I had been experiencing began to decrease in intensity. Additionally, when I ran out of CBD oil much of the pain and ailments started to reoccur.
Water boils at 212 degrees F. I was living around 210 degrees F. Taking CBD helped bring down the temperature, 208, 205, 200… It helped me get out of the RED ZONE that I was living in and moved me into something closer to ORANGE or YELLOW, a better headspace. The new headspace allowed me to practice better self-talk, so I could work on myself as well as start to quiet the noise in my head without alcohol. I’m still working on me and CBD is a big tool in my tool box.
CBD had such a life changing effect on me that I started my own CBD company to share the highest quality CBD available to veterans and first responders. Naked Warrior Recovery’s mission is to help you recover from mental and physical trauma, no matter how big or small.
How CBD works: CBD is a non-psychoactive (you don’t get high) molecule from the hemp plant. It has been shown to have many medicinal effects on all mammals. CBD supports the Endocannabinoid System, a giant neuro-receptor connected to every other system in the body (ie. Central Nerves System, Digestive System, Immune System, Respiratory System, etc.).
The Endocannabinoid System (ECS) is supported by endogenous cannabinoids that all mammals create. Sometimes the body does not produce enough natural cannabinoids to support the ECS. CBD works like a multivitamin to support the ECS to help bring it back into balance. When the ECS in balance, it helps bring the other systems into balance. A few other benefits that have been observed from CBD use are reduced chronic inflammation, elliptic seizures, pain, anxiety, depression, sleep disorders, acne, and Parkinson’s.
There is still a lot to be learned about this natural remedy, but the future looks bright! There are studies coming out almost daily on PUBMED about CBD and the Endocannabinoid System.
For more information on CBD go to www.nw-recovery.com and also check out Episode 91 of The Soulful Hunter Podcast where Johnny Mack and I dive into our experiences with it.