I decided to use my blog as a sounding board and make an attempt to make some sense about recent events in our small country community of Gray Station. I'm not a native to Gray and have lived here for almost 17 years and this is definitely home to us. What's unbelievable frightening and tragic is the recent overdoses and untimely deaths of our teenagers to this whacked out new drugs of K2-synthetic marijuana, bath salts and incense. These currently legalized items are being sold in "head shops", tobacco stores and even at the local gas stations and are simply labeled "not for human consumption" but trust me when I say that's exactly what is killing our children! I've been told by local police officers that they are smoking or snorting these drugs and the reactions or side effects include elevated body temperature, psychosis, brain damage and multiple organ failure and the worst death. These drugs do not show up in urine or blood drug screens and the local hospitals are so overwhelmed with these patients that they are currently working on opening up new ICU and ER beds just to deal with in influx of patients that they are seeing EVERYDAY from this crap.
Sadly this really hit close to home this past Tuesday when two Boone students had tragic outcomes from "allegedly" using bath salts and incense. A beautiful young lady that was a junior has died and a sophomore is in a drug induced coma and on a ventilator with an outcome that is unknown at this time.What's even more outrageous is that these stores are perfectly within the law (currently in Washington County TN) because these substances are not banned and I pray that does come very soon, there's always the good old internet where you can order these demons.I've also been informed that lawmakers are considering making marijuana legal in the hopes that people will not have to buy synthetic drugs for a high. Now listen people I am not saying in any way that I was a model teenager and I know my friends will back me up on this too, however I really don't remember knowing any of us in high school doing things like this and someone dying from drugs. Of course I still worry about Mr.drinking and driving, or getting into a car with someone that's been drinking and of course of meth, Lortab, oxycodone, etc. but I am here to say that this new thing of K2, bath salts and incense scares the ever loving life out of me and I think it's a sure bet it does other parents, not only in our community but also everywhere else.
My friend Annie Bug asked me today and our other partner in tomfoolery (we both have teenagers) if we weren't terrified and simultaneously we both said "YES!" and we talk to our kids everyday about what's going on. You can try your best to keep the lines of communication open, pray, stalk your children and their friends and all but threaten bodily harm but ultimately my worry is that the peer pressure and the kids not really understanding or taking the negative outcomes seriously might lead them down that road. But I plan on doing this each and every day and protesting these places, politicians, lawmakers, schools and whoever else will listen that this madness has got to stop. Even one child's death is too many!
I hope what you take away from my blog about the synthetic drugs is that they are out there, it is popular with the teens and younger adults and education about these drugs and the side effects and the very real possibility of death with even one use and trying whatever it takes to reach your children and the policy makers has to be done and parents take a firm stand. I truly believe this is going to be a very worthy cause to take up and wave the flag of attack and for the communities, rather it be big or small, to say this has to stop now and be heard by the Big Dogs. I also want to applaud Kingsport TN for recently getting these synthetic drugs banned, however a short drive to Gray or Johnson City and the kids can get them. Also several area churches and high schools are having open forums provided by law enforcement and educators open to anyone who wants to learn more and what to look for as far as warning signs and prevention. My prayer this evening is that we come together as a whole community and fight this battle together because I truly believe my child and your child is worth it and so another family will not know this heartache of losing their precious one.
I will update my blog and Facebook when our community awareness projects and protests have been arranged and I hope everyone will join us in fighting the good fight. My prayer is that with this increased awareness that the lines of communication between parent and kids will begin or continue and that we will truly listen to their voice.