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Miranda Hawryliw; Nothing has been as hard as closing the doors of our dispensary

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Miranda Hawryliw is co-founder of the much-loved dispensary The Bud Remedy in Abbotstford, British Columbia. She also writes for High! Canada Magazine, is a canna mom, advocate, and cannabis educator. Alpha Woman connected with Miranda a few months after she closed the doors of her dispensary to talk about life, bravery, cannabis, and what is next for The Bud Remedy.

AW: Tell us about your professional journey, and how you ended up opening a dispensary in Abbotsford.

I grew up on a farm, so I always knew that I wanted to work jobs that required great care and dedication. My first challenging job was the summer I turned 16. My parents shipped me off to start working with my tough Uncle Freddie, who owned a reputable and highly successful company that serviced Oil, Gas and Powerline companies, with the hope that being on the road would “straighten me out”.

Did it ever! From that summer on I realized that I thrive when I am surrounded by trees and the colour green. And so began my journey into the world of oil, gas, and contract work for powerline companies. I have always worked HARD labour-intensive jobs. I spent a lot of time as an adult working 12-16-hour days, on the road, and in isolated and remote areas of the province.I held many leadership roles, and managed multiple crews working alongside me. I truly am grateful coming from that realm- it has taught me about strength and work ethic. I found myself surrounded by hard working men, and I learned quickly how to earn and keep their respect.

When I was 27, I got pregnant which meant that being on the road and working long tiring days was at an end for me. I really did mourn the end of my outdoor career, but it is hard raising babies from the bush!

I moved to a very small rural Saskatchewan community and stayed at home with my new baby boy where I began buying and selling vintage clothing online- anything I could do to keep raising awareness around the impact that we as consumers have on the environment.

Then came along my Mom, Deb, and her dream of opening a dispensary. PERFECT, I thought. A plant (and boy, do I love plants- especially the cannabis plant) that has the power to heal our people and has the potential to change how we live. I am in and when I commit, I commit. So, here we are.

AW: You had to recently close the doors of your dispensary. Tell us about that journey and what is next.

I have known a lot of pain in my life, and yet nothing has been as hard as closing our doors. Not only did we close once, but we closed our doors twice. Fear is to blame, and I truly have a difficult time dealing with that fear. I desperately wish that we did not have to make those decisions. Not only did we suffer, but our members paid the largest price.

My belief in cannabis paired with my belief in people allowed me to reach people in large numbers each and every day. I always joked that all I ever wanted to do was sit and listen to peoples’ stories. I got to do that. The dispensary was a dream come true for me. For me, the heart break comes from feeling like I had purpose in a cause that was greater than myself, and to have to explain to those who came to rely on The Bud Remedy that we were no longer able to assist them.

Legalization has been a real let down. With the closure came my old friends depression and anxiety. A loss of structure, a loss of routine, a loss of purpose and meaning. It is OK- cannabis helps me navigate through those emotions- and I am thankful that the challenges will not discourage me. I will continue to advocate for the medicinal user and for our community.

I now work for High! Canada Magazine. I started writing at the end of May this year, which has been a real blessing. My editor and publisher thoughtfully named my work “The Miranda Report.” I giggle. It’s really great and I am SO grateful.

The Bud Remedy did apply for legal licensing. We wait. Deb and I also have some behind-the- scenes plans, and will hopefully be able to manifest and launch our workings in the near future.

AW: Being a woman leader and entrepreneur can often require a lot of bravery. What in your personal life enabled you to be such a brave woman? Do you believe you are brave and if so, do you purposefully cultivate your bravery?

Oh wow! Yes. Bravery is a necessary attribute when overcoming what seems like impossible situations. There are many things in my life that have made me brave. Bravery is one of those things that all of us have within us, but it doesn’t look the same for everyone. To be perfectly honest, I don’t think one has a choice when it comes to bravery. I think what has contributed most to my strength has been my mental health. I suffer from severe panic disorder and depression (oh but that’s not all!).

At my lowest points I had to live with my brother because I was in such a bad way. I was scared to leave the house in fear I would die, I was scared to breathe the air with the fear I would die, I could not eat because I was fearful I would choke and die, I did not sleep because I was scared I would die in my sleep, I was hallucinating, I was having panic attacks up to 12 times a day and in the evenings I would make my brother drive me to emergency to check my vitals.

I lost a lot of years living like that. My fear of death comes from a long line up of losing people whom I love deeply. Addiction has also played its role. Oh, how it has… and those are stories for another time. Being a mother and being a mother who refuses to let her son see her that way means I must be brave every single day. I thank Cannabis every day for calming those dark thoughts.

AW: Big corporate cannabis and the OG cannabis culture collide, sometimes with spectacular results.  What are you most upset about with how legalization has rolled out, and what makes you happiest about the legalization of cannabis?

You know, I try really hard to be positive and remain hopeful. How can I survive this world without hope? Maybe I should try and answer what makes me happiest first. 15 minutes later- IT SHOULD NOT TAKE THIS LONG TO ASNWER! HA!

I am excited about the future of hemp and I am so proud of everyone that is opening their minds to cannabis because it is now legalized. I love knowing that it is reaching a larger audience. People are in desperate need of alternative healing, and this is it. YAY!

Now, for my disappointments. Well, there are many- but I will leave my lengthy list at a couple of things, because I am trying to practice GRACE and patience. Time will hopefully mend this flawed system. I am disappointed that legalization has left the medical patient behind. I am disappointed that what is fueling the legal industry is greed, and what I take personally is that when cannabis became legalized the existing cannabis industry was deemed criminal and unsafe. Gosh, could I go on and on about that.

AW: With the next wave of cannabis product formats soon to be released do you feel there will be formats that will appeal especially to women and if so, why?

I think that there are many companies out there that will capitalize on womens purchasing power. I know that was not the question!

AW: What is the accomplishment you are most proud of in your life so far?

It feels weird to say anything other than my compassionate, loving and strangely wise 5 year old.

AW: How do you keep fit mentally and physically?

Well, I am not embarrassed to say that physically I really need to improve. I am active in the way that I am always doing something, but I need to allow myself time to really practice and enjoy mindful physical fitness. I notice that my mental health suffers if I am not active. My beloved plant ally cannabis keeps me mentally sound. I am a deep thinker and treasure my experiences with cannabis. It allows to me open myself up so that I am aware, and I am present. It allows me to reflect, heal and flourish.

AW: What are your favourite methods of consuming cannabis, and why?

I love smoking doobies. I love everything about doobies. The ritual of grinding, rolling, and smoking is incomparable to any other form of consumption for me. I love to look at it and smell it. I love to see how it leaves my grinder and how well it rolls. I love that feeling of connected involvement. Sitting outside and smoking a joint is the time I quiet my mind and focus on my wellbeing- as well as learn lessons from what I consider my plant teacher.

AW: Where is your most favourite place on earth and why?

In the woods. It is quiet and peaceful. There are sounds of life we don’t often hear when in a city.

AW: What excites you most about the next 5 years of your life?

Gee whiz. I have learned that life throws curves, so imagining the next 5 years is wild. This industry moves like a wildfire – removing what prevents healthy new growth. It actually blows my mind when I think what could be in 5 years.

AW: Do you have any words of wisdom for other women/people who are thinking of joining the industry?

Ladies, be authentic. If you are looking to join the industry, know why. Choose your battles and remain loyal to YOUR cause. There are a lot of sharks in this water, but wow is this ocean as beautiful and magical as the earthly ocean. The cannabis community is small. Join the industry because you love Cannabis, not because you wish to gain from it. We have enough greedy hands. Truth.

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Leslie Andrachuk

As a bilingual pioneer in global digital publishing and marketing, Leslie is happiest when creating new things and inspiring her teams. She is passionate about changing biases that hold women back from realizing their true power and is grateful that at this point in her career she has the skills to make real change.

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1 Comment

  1. Marianne September 12, 2019

    I personally have had the privilege of having met these 2 wonderful women.
    They guided me thru my journey back to health and I got off medical prescriptions.
    Thank you for being there for me

    Reply

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