Citation: Antheia. "Sideways World: An Experience with Salvia divinorum (5x extract) (exp52979)". Erowid.org. Feb 2, 2007. erowid.org/exp/52979
After having had some success with other forms of legal highs, I decided to experiment with salvia. I had heard it was an intense but short acting psychedelic, which intrigued me. Although I have loved psychedelics since I first discovered them eight years ago, I don’t use them that often in part because of the time involved in tripping and analyzing the experience. That said I have used psychedelics somewhere around three dozen times in my life. My favorite method of tripping is LSD, but I have also used mushrooms, morning glory and baby woodrose seeds. I have also used a variety of other drugs, including stimulants, depressants, empathogens, and deleriants.
I ordered salvia online, choosing a 5x extract. When the package arrived my husband wanted to try it immediately. I prefer to prepare more for trips but knowing the effects weren’t supposed to last very long I said why not? My husband, who uses psychedelics rarely now but used them a lot when he was younger, went first. He took a large hit from our glass pipe. He coughed a lot but reported no initial effects. Only two minutes later he took two smaller but decent sized hits. He started to smile that tripped out smile and I knew it had hit him. He was silent but looked around like everything was captivating. After a few minutes I asked how he felt and he said great and started to laugh. He described a “pouring” feeling as though he was being poured into his body. When he had recovered a bit more he told me it was like acid, which surprised me as the reports I read were not really acidlike. He stumbled a bit but seemed to be mostly normal after ten minutes. I asked him to hand me the pipe when he felt sober enough to babysit me and he handed it over five minutes later (15 minutes after smoking).
Here is where I made a big mistake. Seeing that it had required 3 hits to get my husband off, I decided to take two hits. I had read enough reports to know better, but the extremely short duration of the trip made me feel safe. I took the first hit slowly and smoothly (a pleasant smoke I might add), holding it in for about 20 seconds. I blew out a huge cloud of smoke, and started to take another hit. Halfway through the second hit (while still inhaling) I got tunnel vision. I hardly felt the smoke leave my lungs. The whole room was spinning and everything had trails. I was shocked and amazed at the change in my surroundings. It was like a cross between shroom trails and the bed spins (like from too much alcohol). I felt two things at once. Part of me was feeling totally disoriented and wanted everything to stop moving. And part of me was having fun. I realized that if I looked at the center of the room things were much better and I started to laugh really hard. I was in ecstasy and in pain.
Then the center of the room began to spin wildly too. I felt like I was in the hold of a ship being thrashed about by massive waves. My husband was standing half on the balcony smoking. At this point he walked in a step and said “Welcome to my world.” At that instant the whole room landed hard on its side, taking my husband and me with it. Gravity was now pulling me in towards the kitchen, which is normally North. South, the direction of the balcony, was up. Both me and my husband were stuck sideways, our legs dangling in the air, inches from the kitchen counter's side, which was now the floor. I was able to move my parts around my center of gravity, but not able to move my center of gravity. I did not fall to the 'floor' because I was caught in the grip of two opposing forces. One at my back and the other at my front.
I was certain that I had been sucked into an alternate dimension or world, which I called sideways world. This was what my husband meant when he said welcome to my world, or so I thought at the time. Although this new world had definite direction it was spinning about this new axis at lightening speed. I kept trying to turn, hoping that a new perspective would stop everything, but I felt as much as saw the added trails this caused. In fact my whole body was spinning and contracting around its axis, which ran down the spine. This was highly painful and utterly terrifying. I have had scary moments on drugs before but nothing that comes close to this. I didn’t know that fear could be like that. I had had one terrifying moment of clarity in a dream once, when I knew that there was no afterlife and that my consciousness would cease to exist. This rivaled that dream in the fear department but was far more frantic.
I hated my husband for damning me to this world. I knew that it was a drug experience, and that it would end, but I had forgotten how long it would take and thought I would be like this for hours. I was certain that he was sideways too, that he knew what this drug would do to me and let me do it anyway, so that he wouldn't be alone in this sideways world. I looked at the door to the balcony. The door my husband had stepped through before he turned over. It was salvation. The way out. The door to the straight world. I tried very hard to reach that door, but the world was spinning too wildly and all I could do was spin about my axis. The door seemed to be closer at times and farther at others but I don’t recall ever making progress toward it or moving away. I yelled at my husband for putting me here, though I wasn’t sure if the words came out. I remember him talking to me but I was too frantic to listen. His answers made no sense either. In response to something I said he replied “But I’m from this world.” This struck me as utterly stupid. He had walked into the sideways world through that door. I saw him do it. How could he deny it? But as I told him this something clicked.
That door wasn’t the door to the straight world! At the same time the spinning slowed and I realized I was coming down. Thank God! I lay on the couch for several minutes, letting the feeling slip away. Still terrified and in pain but now with the knowledge that it was ending. All I had to do was wait.
When the last of the terror had subsided I sat up and looked around. Things were glowy and trippy like the come up of acid and I felt stoned with a mdma edge. This lasted for about half an hour and was great. If this was all salvia did I would smoke it all the time. I no longer felt fear at all but a sense of awe at what the drug had done to me. My hubby was obviously very shaken. I knew I put him through a lot and told him several times that I was better now. As the come down progressed I discussed my experience with him and discovered that what he saw was quite different from what I had perceived.
For his point of view, everything was fine at first. I was laughing for at least three minutes and appeared to be enjoying myself (though in reality the fear was already there). He stepped in after finishing a cigarette and said “Welcome to my world” because everything was funny to him too. At this point I apparently jumped up and said I had to get out of this world. I ran for the balcony door and my husband, afraid I meant to jump off the balcony, stopped me. The next five minutes were a drag out physical struggle in which I constantly lunged for the door while he restrained me and tried to talk me down. He said he told me a lot of things that I have no memory of. I was also yelling and screaming at the top of my lungs. Hubby was afraid someone would call the cops with all the ruckus I was causing. Most of this time I was on the floor, but I fought my way up again (apparently I managed to get up several times which is surprising because my husband is much stronger than I am physically) and he put me on the couch were I lay and went limp for the first time. This is were I came back to reality.
A few days later I decided to try again, this time with less salvia. I did not want to experience a full salvia trip again but was curious where this powerful drug might take me with more caution. I filled the pipe bowl with a 80/20 mixture of mugwort (gives a nice stoned feeling) and salvia. I smoked this in two hits and found myself in the happy glowy MDMA like state that I had experienced before as a come down. I waited 5 minutes and nothing else happened so I made another bowl with a half and half mixture of the same drugs. A hit of that put me in a deeper trip. I experience the same feeling but with far less intensity. This time it was the closet door that I felt I needed to go to. I closed my eyes and buried my head in my husbands shirt until the feeling past. I can see how many people see tunnels on salvia, since I keep focusing on doors. After this second attempt I realized that salvia was going to keep taking me to the same place until I had a better idea of where I wanted to go and how to get there.
I came away from this trip terrified of salvia but also deeply intrigued. Someday I would like to try it again, at a smaller dose and with more preparation. This drug has the power to take me somewhere amazing but I am not ready for it yet.
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