Citation: Samanthe. "The Grinch Who Took Mescaline: An Experience with Mescaline (exp11253)". Erowid.org. Dec 13, 2001. erowid.org/exp/11253
This experience was part of a series of guided group psychedelic sessions that I did in 1999. See my other 1999 experiences if you want to read about the bigger picture.
It was the third and last group session of a course of tripping that spanned nine months. The material was mescaline again, 300 mg, taken in three doses spaced 45 min. apart, starting at about 1 PM.
After the first dose, almost immediately, I got a panicky feeling in my heart, and felt whimpering and scared, like a little kid. I had been somewhat hesitant of having this mescaline session, because I wasn't feeling completely strong, and it was a lot of energy to handle the first time I did it (280 mg that time). I was not in tiptop shape because I'd basically broken off a relationship of almost three years with someone I thought I was in love with. So I was heartsick. Plus I'd decided to move to the opposite side of the country, and this new decision was still fresh in my mind. What business did I have going in there and churning all that up again? I thought.
The main sitter caught my eye from across the room and stepped her way gracefully over to me. She sat next to me and whispered kindly, 'what's going on with you?' I replied, 'My heart feels funny.' What I meant was 'it's beating fast and hard,' but she replied, 'Like maybe it's too big for your chest?' The poetry that I discerned in this answer helped to smooth me out and get beyond my temporary obsession with my heart, which stemmed from a period of anxiety disorder and panic attacks when I was 19 (see the 'terror blossom' report). I saw myself as the Grinch, whose heart grew too big and popped out of his chest, but in a good way.
This is what I wrote in my journal:
This trip was different because I was coming from a place of affirmation, 'I am Samanthe, I am right here, I am my Body, I am moving cross-country'… Rather than from a place of negation like, 'I am not afraid, I am not going to feel sadness (well, I did end up saying that…), I am not enough.'
It was quite strange… for hours I was in a reverie, thinking I was lost but also reminding myself that I did not have to figure it all out. With a curious detachment, I imagined I was going to be in a wan vegetative state for an indefinite time. I didn't let this bother me too much. From the start, I proactively called my name to myself (the sitter had at one point suggested that we try doing that if we felt lost) and repeated affirmations, rather than use them as an emergency measure to bail myself out after getting lost. I decided to do what I thought was right for me this time; which was to keep the earphones half off and shut out light with my hands instead of with the eyeshades. This way I felt I could be more grounded and stay in my body. I avoided feeling like this wasn't the 'right' thing to do by repeating happily, relieved, that this is the way **I'm** doing it so it's the right way for now.
My body hurt the whole time. I vaguely felt in emergency mode, really, and I was a bit concerned. I did not want to go deeper and explore the pain, because for this trip I had chosen to exert my will and feel competent. The pain was unrelenting. However, I got in touch with my Will in a way I hadn't before.
I felt -- or rather recognized -- how stoically I go through my life, and how I shut thing out -- people, feelings, pleasure. I heard myself say several times, 'how much longer will I endure this?' meaning the isolation, but it also meant the pain and other negative emotions. I felt like a baby snake poking its head up curiously through the grass, checking things out, innocent, yet in a cold-blooded, detached way. There are advantages and disadvantages to that space. I decided not to judge it. I see the snake as a lone animal. It relies on its body and senses: no appendages to help it -- unlike the octopus (from my other mescaline trip 6 months previous) -- to carry it through life. I thought how a snake that has just shed a skin stays in a dark place until it's ready to come out with a new skin. And that is part of not having to 'figure it out' too soon; because there's a natural rhythm to this shedding. I remembered to stay in my body, my mind wouldn't wander for too long on its over-think trips before I would make myself repeat mantras like, 'I am right here right now having this experience.' I was much less amazed and incredulous at how kind and thoughtful the sitters were this time. Maybe before I thought I somehow didn't deserve to be treated so well. I'm feeling more a sense of belonging, rather than undeserving of their nurturing.
When I was getting confused I kept thinking, 'this must be a dream I'll wake up from' -- I contemplated what it would be like to be in a catatonic state of 'not remembering who I am' yet I didn't let that send me into a panic. I just accepted it, reminding myself there's a beginning, a middle and an end -- these words seemed to hold a vague meaning (again, this phrase was something the sitter had suggested we tell ourselves if we felt 'stuck'), but I didn't try to figure it out, I just trusted instead. I also thought, 'I am right here right now, and that's just where I need to be.' I felt cuddly and snuggly, and as the afternoon wore on I thought I really wanted physical contact, hugging, how nice it would feel. I did snuggle a little with two of the other trippers as I returned to baseline. I wanted to be near people, to connect. I was really stoned until I went to bed. I could really feel an MDMA-like quality to this material this time.
Before taking it, I was feeling apprehensive -- this got worst after the first dose, but [the main sitter] came and sat with me and talked with me and I felt better. When I think about it, I was going in with some heavy stuff -- I had been feeling anxious about divulging the new 'I am moving cross-country' information. I had just done it, and felt a small release in my back the night before. I was feeling ambivalent (again) about medicine work. Yet I came through having explored a less sad, more fun, less 'trying' manner of tripping. Still quite inhibited, but on the path of freedom! I actually enjoyed feeling stoned and out of it, didn't race to return to 'this plane.' Maybe I'm feeling more comfortable crossing that threshold.
I was on my tummy with my arms down or up, close together, part of the time.
Rather than my trip being about people in my life, it was about me, just me.
Oddly I came out wanting to feel more nurturing to those who nurture me and less so to those who don't. I am not obsessed with the challenges of moving, rather, I am delighted with the prospects.
During that weekend, our sitter had us contemplate the following:
'Think about of being able to translate the information received from the experience of the psychedelic sacraments into our relationship with clients, our work, our careers, and in collective and global issues. What have you learned and what are you doing with the knowledge? Think about what you are willing to release and leave in this century, never to speak of it again, and what qualities you are bringing along with you for the benefit of humanity.'
And that was how I ended 1999, and how I entered 2000; with lots of psychedelic session material to chew on for a while. Now it's two years later, and the closest I've gotten to that intensity of tripping was insufflating ~15 mg of 2-CB hydrobromide on top of about 10 mg oral 2-CB. So I'm still taking a break. I moved cross-country, changed jobs, and experienced a number of non-drug-induced changes since then. I'd consider that sort of tripping again but I'm being picky. I might resume tripping with insufflated 5-MeO, or ayahuasca. But essentially my trips have shown me two simple things that have stuck about what I'm to do in the world: breathe, and strengthen my body. If I don't follow that imperative, learn better breathing and body consciousness, what business do I have tripping? I have to do the work to keep moving forward. So I finally kept a promise to myself, by starting yoga. I also decided to abstain from drinking any alcohol for six months, just to see what that's like, and to explore Cannabis, which I discovered I've been chronically overdosing myself on for years (for an illustration, read any of my old Cannabis trip reports).
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