Young Alexis Bortell is taking on Texas in her bid to legalize medical marijuana.
The 9-year-old from Dallas started having seizures at the age of 7 and was eventually diagnosed with epilepsy. Her doctors initially prescribed medication but it didn’t do anything for her condition. At one point, it even made her worse.
According to Alexis’ father Dean, a US Navy veteran, she was initially prescribed with Carbatrol. Her seizures went from “mainly at night to around the clock.” The next drug they tried, Depakote, gave the young girl tremors and altered her personality, but didn’t stop the seizures.
The Bortell’s started looking into medical marijuana after watching “Weed 2,” a CNN documentary on medical marijuana. After doing their own research and consulting with specialists, Alexis was issued a “red card” in Colorado, allowing doctors to prescribe her with marijuana-based medication. The medication appears to be working.
“Since the first dose, she has not had a single symptom or seizure and we’re on day 22 now,” her family wrote on Alexis’ Facebook page.
Unfortunately, Alexis can’t use any marijuana-based medication in Texas. The state has banned its medical and recreational use and even has harsh penalties for those in possession of marijuana oils and tinctures, which are the most common form of medical marijuana.
Despite Alexis’ appeal that she “don’t wanna leave Texas. I’m a Texas girl,” her family had no choice but to relocate to Colorado.
Alexis and her family aren’t taking it sitting down though, as they continue to push Texas lawmakers to legalize the treatment.
Several bills have already been proposed but advocates have described them as “appeasement legislation” that doesn’t really help people suffering from diseases that can be helped with medical marijuana.
However, things might be looking up for the Bortells and other families like them. New medical marijuana bills from Texas representative Marisa Marquez and Senator Jose Menendez aim to provide patients with a wide range of conditions access to medical marijuana.
If it’s successful, Alexis’s dream of going back home to Texas might finally come true.
— DFW NORML (@DFWNorml) February 7, 2015