Five months ago, Nichole Taveres-Gibbs was on 23 pills a day. She credits CBD with helping her kick the pills, and now she’s opened a hemp-derived CBD shop.
“I’ve been taking these pills for so long, I’m just so accustomed to taking these pills and I want something different,” she explained.
Taveres-Gibbs’ life unexpectedly changed in 2015. After 25 years in the U.S. Army, she experienced a health crisis that doctors said was only treatable with painkillers. Her condition derailed her military career.
“I started having a migraine one day—what I thought was a very head-burning type of episode where it felt like there was a blowtorch to my head,” she stated. “I went in and got an MRI, and I was told I had a brain condition.”
Taveres-Gibbs was diagnosed with chiari malformation, which is a structural defect in the part of the brain that controls balance. She underwent a necessary surgery, but the end result wasn’t a significant improvement. During a follow-up appointment, she told doctors that she wasn’t feeling much better so they told her she had to do pain management from that point on.
She was then medically retired and plunged into a state of pain, anxiety and depression. She spent three years on opioid pain medications, but she was taking less than prescribed beaus she was worried she’d get addicted. In September 2018, her pain management doctor mentioned she’d been researching CBD and recommended Taveres-Gibbs try it. It helped her tremendously.
After five months of using CBD, she opened a CBD product shore to help others find the same relief.
“There’s so many people that’s suffering that need someone to tell them, you know, it’s gonna be ok,” she said. “You know, yes, you could have been in a bad place, but you can get better.”
Her store, Infusion 420, is the first of its kind in Columbia, South Carolina. And unlike some profit-focused CBD shops, Taveres-Gibbs said store is focused on helping people heal.