A medical marijuana patient in the District is sharing his story with FOX 5. He claims the drug changed his life, and without it, he's not sure he would even be alive.
Leroy Douglas is shopping. The first time he walked into Capital City Care, he said, “It’s a miracle.”
A miracle that he could legally buy marijuana in his hometown of Washington D.C.
Douglas is 62 years old. Back in 1999, he had stomach cancer.
“God had blessed me,” he said. “He saw me and it wasn't my time to go.”
But a doctor had to remove part of his stomach. Douglas lost 50 pounds. He had no appetite. Now he smokes medical marijuana.
“My people say you should be weighing 300 pounds by how much you eat,” Douglas said.
He smokes about 10 grams a week. Much of it is Master Kush.
“It's made a lot of difference,” he said. “I can do more things that I normally do. I could stand on my feet longer. I could even jog if I really wanted to, but I said, 'No, I'm going to save that for the youngsters.'”
In a lot of places that have implemented medical marijuana, it has been an uphill climb. In the District, there are 600,000 residents, but as of Tuesday, there are only 203 people who have registered.
There are thousands of doctors, but only 90 or so of those doctors have asked for the form.
“The demand is high,” said Scott Morgan of Capital City Care. “Believe me because I'm taking those phone calls. We talk to people every day that are very excited about coming in here. It's the process that's new to everyone.”
Capital City Care is one of D.C.'s three medical marijuana dispensaries. Its first sale was in July.
38 percent of D.C. medical marijuana patients have HIV/AIDS. 34 percent are cancer patients. 17 percent have muscle spasms -- sometimes caused by multiple sclerosis. 11 percent have glaucoma.
“The doctor says, 'You a lucky baby.' He said that cancer you had, you're supposed to have been gone,” Douglas said.
Leroy is in remission. Grateful to be here and grateful for medical marijuana.