DENVER — For three years, Enedina Stanger has been in pain and she said her only relief is illegal in her home state of Utah.
Earlier this week, Stanger was sentenced to six months of probation and required to undergo a parenting class after an October incident in which an officer cited her for possession of marijuana while her daughter was in the car.
“They decided to charge me with child endangerment,” Stanger said.
That charge was dropped in a plea deal, and Stanger said her battle with Ehlers-Danlo syndrome is the real danger to her and her family. The genetic disorder attacks the connective tissues, leaving her bound to a wheelchair and creating a daily battle with dislocations and muscle spasms.
“When that happens there is nothing that we have been able to find that stops those spasms and those cramps,” Stanger said.
She said the only thing she found that relieves the spasms and helps ease the pain is marijuana.
“We didn’t know what to do,” Stanger said. “So we just packed up and started driving to Colorado.”
In a phone conversation, Stanger said there were two big reasons why they moved. Her 3- and 4-year-old daughters also have the disorder.
“I think, honestly, that’s the worst part,” Stanger said. “If it was up to me I could just go away and hide in some corner and just give up, but I have two daughters and I have to stick around long enough for them to research me.”
Though her daughters don’t need medication at this point, she hopes to help make medical marijuana an option for everyone in the future.
“It doesn’t matter who you are, pain is pain,” she said. “We all want to have a way to not be in pain and we all want a way to be able to live with our loved ones and not be tortured by our bodies.”
Stanger said she has never exposed her two daughters to marijuana. She and her husband are pushing for Utah to pass medical marijuana legislation so they might one day be able to return home.