The High of Not Caring What People Think

By Carrie Mapes, co-founder Hello Again cannabis-based vaginal suppositories for menopause

I remember watching Oprah turn 50 on television and hearing her describe a miraculous, liberating shift in mindset. No longer driven by what the world thought, Oprah, as a woman in her 50s could finally, authentically be herself without self-doubt.

My first reaction was surprise. Wait! Oprah was caught up with what other people thought?!

My second reaction was delusion. “I’m glad I’m not!”

I was.

True, I was fairly unscathed by some of the more obvious trappings of social expectations. My husband and I never got too caught up in keeping up appearances. We caught ourselves if we started to pay attention to what luxuries other couples were given or created for themselves. I assumed this meant that I wasn’t influenced by what other people thought.

My own moment came right on schedule. At 50, I experienced my own profound shift. Like the constant city noise you only become aware of when vacationing in the mountains, I realized I had a habit of caring what other people thought. But only after I truly stopped caring about others’ opinions.

At 51 years old, I began a new chapter as a first-time entrepreneur in the cannabis industry. This new chapter began when I visited a dispensary out of curiosity with my friend and soon-to-be business partner, Patty Pappas. A place I wouldn’t have been comfortable walking into during my younger years.

We talked to the young budtender and asked every question that came to mind. Younger me probably would have pretended to know more than I did instead of asking for clarification and detail.

Younger me would have felt self-conscious about taking up the staff person’s time.

Younger me would have cared more about what others waiting in line would think over satisfying my own curiosity.

Younger me would have worried about seeing someone I know in a dispensary, even though that person would have also been… at the dispensary.

What Patty and I learned about cannabis that day changed our perception of the plant and its uses. We immediately drew a line between cannabis and the physical and emotional experiences of menopause. We envisioned a unique product and a new space for women’s health within the cannabis industry.

What we learned that day cracked open a door of opportunity right in front of us. Our well-earned, newfound ability to keep the noise of others’ opinions at bay allowed us to kick the door wide open.

About Carrie Mapes

Carrie earned a BA in History and a MEd in Education at UCLA.

Carrie taught in private and public elementary schools and has instructed students with learning differences at the college level. She also wrote and published elementary and commercial teaching guides.

Once her children were born, Carrie became an active mom, volunteer, board member, and artist. Carrie served as a crisis counselor for Crisis Text Line to provide one-on-one crisis support through texts.

Carrie thought the launching of her two kids would lead her to actively pursue her art, but she has taken a turn into the world of wellness, women, and cannabis as Co-Founder of Hello Again cannabis-based vaginal suppositories for menopause.

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