AUSTIN, Texas - Timothy Dashner says his 12-year-old daughter Felicity was diagnosed with Intractable Epilepsy in 2005...meaning her condition can't be helped with treatment. But the Texas family recently moved to Colorado for several months so Felicity could try Cannabis Oil with THC.
"Well for the first time in her life she was able to say her own name. She started talking. She said her first sentences for the first time in her life. I think her first sentence was 'Do you want to go play hide and seek?' To me, hearing that was amazing. I had never heard her talk before," Dashner said.
But they couldn't stay forever. Now that Dashner and his daughter are back in Texas the treatments had to stay in Colorado.
"After going off of the medicine, seizures are starting to pick back up and...it's very sad," Dashner said.
Last week, House Bill 3785 and Senate Bill 1839 were filed. They were officially announced at a press conference at the Capitol Tuesday afternoon.
If passed, the legislation could make it easier for Dashner to help his daughter. The lawmakers behind the bills are hoping to authorize the possession, use, cultivation, distribution, transportation and delivery of Cannabis for medicinal purposes.
Barbara Humphries from Ft. Worth attended Tuesday's conference. She was recently diagnosed with breast cancer and turned to Marijuana after the intense pain of chemo.
"Feeling better was worth obtaining it illegally to be honest with you so I started using it. And immediately I saw that I could eat, I could go out, have a normal life. I wasn't sick anymore. You know it gave me the ability to take care of my children," she said.
Retired nurse Tracy Ansley helped the Dashners move to Colorado.
She says while working in pain management, she realized many prescription meds turn patients into quote "pharmaceutical zombies."
"Many of my patients told me how they were using Cannabis for medicine and that they were able to start coming off of a lot of those dangerous medications. And I saw the quality of their life greatly improve," Ansley said.
For the Dashners...if these bills don't pass, they're planning on going back to Colorado.
"After seeing what it did to her, I mean I don't know how many Epilepsy patients are out there but I've seen suffering. And this would just...I think it would change the whole world. It changed our world," Dashner said.
The response on the MyFoxAustin Facebook page was been overwhelmingly in favor of medical Marijuana.
But several viewers just simply said "no" without much explanation as to why they felt that way.
Joe Roysdon says "The problem with legalizing it is controlling it, keeping it out of the hands of children and determining who should get it. Keeping people who are impaired from driving while on it. Putting serious fines and jail sentences on doctors, users, and vendors who abuse the laws," he said.
These bills have not yet been referred to a committee but the lawmakers who introduced them are hopeful they'll end up becoming law.