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Overcoming
Mushrooms - P. cubensis & Fluoxetine
by capgras
Citation:   capgras. "Overcoming: An Experience with Mushrooms - P. cubensis & Fluoxetine (exp115347)". Erowid.org. Apr 14, 2021. erowid.org/exp/115347

 
DOSE:
20 mg oral Pharms - Fluoxetine (daily)

BODY WEIGHT: 220 lb


This was my first experience of taking mushrooms, and really my first full experience with psychedelics in quite a long time. I experimented once with a small dose of 25I-NBOMe about eight years ago, but aside from that my experiences have been mostly limited to cannabis and various non-hallucinogenic substances like ketamine, cocaine, and MDMA.

I was pretty nervous going into this experience because I had had a few unpleasant and panicky experiences smoking weed quite recently
I was pretty nervous going into this experience because I had had a few unpleasant and panicky experiences smoking weed quite recently
beforehand. Nevertheless, I felt overall that I was in a fairly positive headspace. I had been taking yoga and meditation quite seriously since the start of the new year, and had been on a 20mg daily prescription of fluoxetine (prozac) for roughly six months. These things had done considerable work to de-fog my brain. I was also going to be taking the mushrooms with my friend S as my guide. S is pretty experienced with psychedelics, and also someone who I genuinely feel has my best interests at heart.

I was originally going to take the mushrooms outside in a park closeby to my house, though for the sake of an ideal set and setting I decided it best to take them in my house and then see whether I felt able to venture out. It was important for me to have my bathroom and bed nearby in case anything went tits up.

S came over at about midday and we spent about half an hour chatting and listening to music. I changed into some comfortable clothes to prepare myself and poured us both a pint of water each. After I took some time to settle my nerves, S pulled out a tinfoil wrap containing roughly 4g of dried mushrooms and divided it into two 2g doses, which we then ate.

For the first half hour after ingesting I maintained a pretty high level of energy, which seemed to increase steadily as the mushrooms began to take effect, tending towards a feeling of extreme mischievousness. Me and S began deliberately trying to make each other laugh, feeling almost as though we were naughty schoolboys trying to get each other into trouble in class. It felt quite similar to the giggles I often get from smoking weed, though without the sedate feeling that often accompanies. I felt completely in control of myself.

The visuals began with a gentle pulsating in my vision. I noticed it in my hands and in my living room carpet. S went to the kitchen to make us both a cup of tea and I noticed a slight fear of being without him whilst the visuals really began to take effect. The immense energy I had built up hadn't left, and I began to get a strong feeling that if I stayed active, I wouldn't be as alarmed by this onset. I guess the idea was to do things that would cement a feeling of being in control of myself, as well as utilise the energy that was bubbling up inside of me.

I spent a lot of time standing up, and a lot of time trying to articulate exactly how I was feeling, though words were beginning to escape me. I also kept getting the feeling that I had to do something, and kept walking into my kitchen and bathroom only to realise there had been absolutely no reasoning behind it.

S suggested we put video from one of our favourite yoga instructors on the television. Very quickly we realised we had too much energy for yoga and so left the video paused. The instructor looked as though she had a serene aura of pure light around her, which made us feel very safe.

The visuals kicked in fully as I was looking at some trees outside my living room window. The branches and leaves seemed to spiral into each other with no defined edges. My carpet began to form a beautiful fractal pattern that gently strobed. I was also beginning to see tracers as things moved, and some wonderful closed eye visuals. S started to look as though he had been painted into existence. It reminded me of the evocative animation style in the film 'Loving Vincent'. This was the point of no return.

It was at this point that I felt almost on a precipice. I was excited to be experiencing this for the first time, but was also hyperaware of anything that might cause me to panic. I constantly felt like the energy that had built up inside of me needed to be released somehow, and for a while kept thinking I needed to vomit. It turned out I just needed to burp a lot, as each time I did it felt like an immense relief. I also had a brief worry that I was masticating a lot as my teeth felt quite tight and painful, but I think this was just me psyching myself out.

Eventually the intense worry settled, though I still felt a lingering sense of panic. Intrusive thoughts started to enter my head. 'Is it going to get more intense than this?' 'What if I start causing S to have a bad trip?' 'What if I start freaking out and S doesn't know what to do?' 'What if we really should have had a proper trip sitter who was going to stay completely sober?' these thoughts were fleeting but fairly consistent.

As we were fully at the peak of the come-up I began to feel what I can only describe as a sense of 'otherness'. I felt like I was watching my own actions from an outside perspective, as though an entirely separate consciousness. My sense of self was completely intact, but I felt as though I was witnessing 'me' as somebody else.
My sense of self was completely intact, but I felt as though I was witnessing 'me' as somebody else.
It was this strange feeling that helped me to realise that a lot of the intrusive thoughts I was having was my own body trying to 'pre-empt' having a bad time. Almost like a protective buffer. The more I thought about this, the more I felt it was ridiculous that I should be creating worries for myself. Then it hit:

'The mushrooms aren't inherently making you panic, you're setting yourself up to allow the mushrooms to make you panic...and you don't need to'.

As soon as this realisation hit I felt an intense and almost otherworldly sense of connectedness and relaxation. Sometimes my yoga instructor mentions tapping into an 'inner smile'. I'd always had a loose sense of what this meant, but now it was really clear. I felt like I was surrounded by this really tangible positive energy that I wanted to just bunch up into a bear hug and push into myself.

I decided to go upstairs with S to hang out with my cats for a little bit. Both of them seemed to exude just pure blissful energy. We found ourselves in the office space in my house, which is full of various trinkets I've collected from travels to other countries. I think we had begun the descent at this point. The visuals were still present but were beginning to calm. I still felt like I had a lot of energy, but this was distinctly a 'chattiness' energy. I spent the onset of the comedown regaling S with travel stories, then we went downstairs and watched the film Whisper of the Heart to guide us gently back into sobriety.

The comedown felt quite unpleasant, and for a brief while I felt a lot of my personal insecurities amplified. I haven't been able to look after myself as consistently as I'd like during the pandemic and so a lot of these were appearance-based. This was only a passing feeling though. I'm used to the extended periods of sheer bleakness I get after taking MDMA or cocaine. S left at around 6pm, and I spent the rest of the evening reading in bed, silently proud that I had managed to not only talk myself out of unnecessary anxiety, but also reflect on the broader sense in which I allow anxiety to control me.

Now that I have a frame of reference for taking mushrooms, it's definitely something I'd do again.

Exp Year: 2021ExpID: 115347
Gender: Male 
Age at time of experience: 25 
Published: Apr 14, 2021Views: 426
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Mushrooms - P. cubensis (66) : Guides / Sitters (39), First Times (2), Small Group (2-9) (17)

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