For quite some time, I’ve been curious about the effects of magic mushrooms, the more natural option for hallucinogenic drug experimentation. I mentioned the idea casually to friends in the summer to see if anybody would consume said psychedelic drug with me. None seemed interested. Then, I went on a first date with a curly-haired musician boy (my now boyfriend- his name is Jeremy by the way), who told me, not only that he would love to do it with me, but that he was in fact quite experienced with the drug in question. Seeing as how that’s exactly what you want to hear from the person whose going to guide you through an experience to which you are completely novice, I was sold. With those two sentences of conversation and little other knowledge of each other, we made plans to take ‘shrooms’.
That’s how I found myself sitting in Jeremy’s kitchen last week, watching him make peanut butter and jam sandwiches lined with tiny pieces of fungus. While he began to munch without hesitation, my heart started to race and my mind darted over everything I had been warned. I was about to consume a drug I had never taken before; to cause an effect on my brain that would otherwise never naturally occur in my lifetime. I was short of breath.
Jeremy continued to eat his sandwich contently.
First, I recalled what I had read on the internet. “People tripping on mushrooms might see things in different colours or see patterns. Existing colours, sounds, tastes and textures may be distorted, while feelings and emotions intensify. It can feel like time has sped up, slowed down or stopped completely. There can be a changed perception of one’s place in the universe and a feeling of communing with a higher power.”
Then, I recalled what I had been told by Jeremy’s friends (also seasoned shroom consumers). One asked me if I liked my life, adding that I should be in a good mood when we take them because whatever I was feeling would be amplified. Another told me that I would likely have thoughts that I normally wouldn’t have. My own friends, less knowledgable on the subject, warned me not to go into the high with any expectations. I can’t say that I had any, having nothing to compare the experience to myself. So I continued to prod my friends for their stories. The first told me that during his high, he hallucinated a wall covered in doll heads and crosses. He consumed 1 gram of the drug, the same dosage I was recommended to take. A friend of my roommate said that during her high, she became a baguette, and then later hallucinated that she fell through her toilet into hell and was raised out of it by angels. She consumed 7 grams of the drug, not a dosage I was recommended to take.
Now, having exhausted all available thoughts on the matter, I finally took a bite of my sandwich. I was told that it would taste disgusting by the way. If you’re curious about that, I actually couldn’t taste it at all, even when I took a bite of a mushroom on it’s own.
Then all that was left to do was wait- about 45 minutes.
As I sat on the side of Jeremy’s bed watching him play Red Dead Redemption 2, my hands became clammy and touching him suddenly seemed weird. Unfamiliar. The high must of took over very suddenly after that, because I can’t pinpoint the moment that my brain plunged into another state. Time stopped and my thoughts were set free into the room. I felt like I was inside of my brain but with Jeremy there with me. The inner monologue that plays in my head when I’m alone and nobody is there to interrupt it, became outer monologue. My mind was completely uninhibited.
I laid on the floor of Jeremy’s room with him sitting above me, and I told him that I could imagine us standing inside of my head. A little me was sitting there at her desk asking where we wanted to go- to this thought? or what about this memory? she asked, pointing to an image on the screen above us. I felt like I could take him to the places I held most dear in my mind, memories from my childhood and my most personal thoughts. I could share parts of my brain with him that nobody else new about. As I thought this, the floor beneath my head began to look different, but remained familiar. I was now lying on the hardwood floor of my grand parent’s cottage, Jeremy still sitting above me, and the sounds of family bustling around the dining room table in the background. I didn’t see any of this, I just felt it. I could imagine the bright colours of the fall leaves that we used to decorate the cottage with when we gathered for Thanksgiving dinner. Though I was aware that I wasn’t actually there. I was in two places, both in Jeremy’s room and in my mind, surrounded by the comfort of his presence and the memory.
I think the most intense part of the high lasted two hours, followed by another significant three hours and then finally a fairly sudden plunge back into reality. A lot happened, though the scene above stands out the most to me. I talked non-stop the entire time, finding myself again and again perplexed by the workings of the world and human life. When I looked at myself in the mirror it felt like I was seeing myself for the first time and I felt shorter than I thought I was. I remember looking at Jeremy at one point too and feeling struck by the closeness I shared with him. In the moment, I likened the feeling to the pureness of the friendships I had as a child, undistracted then by feelings of sexual attraction. I don’t have brothers or friend’s of equal closeness that don’t possess more feminine qualities, so it felt strange to be so close to a boy in that way.
When the high officially wore off, I worried slightly that I had shared too much of my brain with him. That’s how intimate the experience had felt- like I had exposed myself so much that he couldn’t possibly still like me. But he did. He said that my thoughts were strange and beautiful. I had shown him the intricate workings of my mind and he accepted me.
For the purpose of offering you a comparable look at the first time use of a hallucinogenic drug, I’m fairly biased. I’ve been told that the feeling is different depending on where you are and who you’re with. I was with the boy I’m in love with. So perhaps this is an accurate look at what it’s like to do hallucinogenic’s with the person you love. It’s like a new age relationship building exercise- at the end of it I felt more comfortable, and more trusting. In a matter of five hours, I had fallen a little more in love with him.