Duncan's Story

I was born and raised around horses. Growing up on the eastern Ontario hunter/jumper circuit, I eventually took over a large riding school from my mother. Nowadays, I have around 30 horses in my barn, and we can be regularly found competing on the A circuit and hosting shows at my farm. But for a brief period of time, my life with horses was in serious jeopardy.

I’ve had a number of concussions in my day. I come from a generation where, between horses and sports, it was just kind of a given that you’d get your bell rung once in a while. But I had never had a concussion like the one I suffered after falling from a hay loft into a cattle barn years ago. I suffered a serious head injury that left me bed ridden for three months.

It would be an understatement to tell you that it was hard. I couldn’t handle light or sound. Every day was like the worst hangover I’ve ever had, but without all the fun parts that go before it. I was even beginning to suffer depression, convinced that I would never feel better again. Worst of all, my symptoms were affecting my livelihood. I wasn’t able to teach or coach. I could only handle about an hour of work a day. When you have an entire barn full of horses and a riding school, that’s just not enough.

My doctor repeatedly told me that time would help, and it did to a point. I also tried physical therapy and osteopathy, which made a difference. But I never felt 100% and I was still limited in what I was capable of doing during the day. A rugby friend recommended CBD oil. I had nothing to lose at that point so I gave it a try. Three days later, I was basically symptom free and back to my old self.

How It Helps

CBD is the only reason I’m able to put in a full day’s work again in a job I love. It completely relieves the ongoing symptoms from my concussion. It also helps with my pain management. I’ve ridden some bad horses and I’ve hit the ground many times over the years—I have a lot of persistent aches and pains, as a result. CBD stops those and helped me manage my pain effectively after my knee replacement without using opioids. My personal preference is 20 mg of CBD oil with a small amount of THC. I take it four to five times a week, typically at night to also help with my insomnia. It gives me pain relief without making me feel high.

CBD saved my quality of life. I don’t know where I’d be without it. If I could tell people one thing about CBD, it would be to try it. There is no downside. If it doesn’t work for you, then it doesn’t work and you move on. But CBD has a real potential to help—like it did me.