It’s probably not a surprise that the Utahn competing on the new season of “The Marijuana Show” supports the ballot initiative that would legalize medical marijuana.
“I cannot tell you how excited I am,” said Heather Lawrence, co-founder of Restored Balance. She said her brother, who has multiple sclerosis, left Utah “to use cannabis in Las Vegas to improve his quality of life.”
“He had to move away from his family. And you hear stories like that all the time. We are splitting up families. It just makes me sick.”
It may, however, surprise you to learn that the Kaysville woman on Amazon Prime’s “The Marijuana Show” doesn’t actually deal with marijuana. Restored Balance sells beauty and pain-management products with CBD (cannabidiol) oils from industrial hemp plants — which is legal.
“Our oil is zero THC — nothing psychoactive, so it can’t get you high. It’s a nutritional supplement,” Lawrence said.
And that sets her apart from the other eight contestants on “The Marijuana Show.”
“Even though we’re not cannabis, we’re still close enough in the family that they felt it would be fine,” Lawrence said.
Season 3, which starts streaming on Amazon Prime on Wednesday, is sort of a cross between “American Idol” and “Shark Tank.” Hosts/producers Wendy Robbins and Karen Paull lead contestants through challenges as they compete to win investment capital.
Lawrence said it’s “next-to-impossible” to get funding for anything associated with cannabis or hemp, “so the idea of getting on a show to potentially get an investor — I mean, that’s a game-changer for us. We just couldn’t pass up the opportunity. Even if we don’t win, we figure it will be huge.”
She’s pretty sure her story got her on the show. She’s a woman; she’s from Utah; she’s the mother of eight.
She and her husband each had four “and we’re newlyweds,” Lawrence said. “We’re a bigger version of the ‘Brady Bunch.’”
And she’s passionate about CBDs, which she “stumbled across” when she and her husband were taking prescribed opiates for pain.
“It changed our lives,” she said. “And we’ve got some pretty impressive stories in our own immediate family.”
Lawrence said her father was diagnosed with leukemia, but after using her products he’s “in full remission.” Doctors discovered a “huge mass” on her daughter’s brain, which is “almost completely gone.”
“We’ve seen miracle after miracle after miracle,” she said, "so we’ve become cannabis activists and educators.”
While most of her family is excited about the business and “The Marijuana Show,” some still say, “‘You sell marijuana. You sell weed.’ I tell them, ‘Listen, we would go to prison if that was the case. We live in Utah.'”
Several have tried the products and changed their tunes, shrugging off earlier objections.
“It’s cool to watch people change and open up and understand that it’s not about a drug. It’s not about getting high,” she said.