That Morning. | or, 'What It's Like To Do Magic Mushrooms."
As I shared in my precursor blog to this one, I've heard about microdosing psychedelics for years - and the extensive literature available on the neuroscience of psilocybin suggests an overwhelming boatload of benefits for neurochemical wellness with very little (if any) side effects. It's imperative to note that every/body is different. As powerful as psilocybin can be at having positive effect on the mental wellbeing of one person does not mean it's the right solution for someone else. The decision to microdose and/or experiment with psychedelic journeying or any kind of plant medicine is a deeply personal one that needs to be made intuitively and based upon personally-done research and consultation with the medical caregiver(s) you most deeply trust.
With that disclaimer aside, I share my story.
As I mentioned, I've been studying microdosing in theory for a while - with the intention of incorporating it into my clients' healing journeys. It didn't feel aligned, however, to be working plant medicine into my work without stepping upon the journey myself. For a long time, plants as teachers simply didn't speak to me. And therein lies lesson #1 - if it's not something you're led to do, on a gut-knowing, bone-deep level - then it's not for you right now.
As it turns out, largely unexpectedly, it was a path I was ready and open to walk.
Here were the basics I felt most informed by and equipped with:
- your dose (of psilocybin) dictates your experience. Every body is different but on average, 3-3.5 grams is the typical recreational dose and begets the desired strong hallucinogenic state. For the adventurers, 4.5-5 grams is known as 'the hero's dose'.
- Microdosing, though, is usually about 1/10 of your "trip" dose (so anywhere from 0.25 to 0.5grams taken across a variety of schedules depending on your desired effects) and can be done in a myriad of ways: a few days on, a few days off or every second day, etc. It's recommended to start low and slow, note how you feel/respond, and tweak accordingly.
- it is impossible to overdose on psilocybin, nor are there any physically addictive properties.
- psilocybin is believed to offer many of its users relief from physical pain. When I asked my source for more details, his response was pretty powerful: "We shouldn't be seeking relief from pain. Pain is a guidepost. It's an important message from our body. What we should be seeking to alleviate is suffering as a result of pain." - go down this rabbithole as it feels right for you. As for me, it was exactly the message I needed to hear.
When I asked him - "Is the hallucinogenic experience frightening?" he responded with another powerful nugget of wisdom- "What do you get when you squeeze an orange? Orange juice, right? You can't get apple juice or milk. What's inside of you is what will come out." - If you're experiencing dark, frightening visions during your journey, rest assured they aren't being created by the active chemical compounds of mushrooms.... psilocybin interacts with serotonin, your body's happy chemical - anything that comes up that feels menacing or dark is coming up to be processed and reflected upon - it shouldn't be tempered or muted, rather it is coming up in a demand to be felt, honoured, processed, and released.
I overcame my own first-timer anxieties by lovingly planning out the details of our journey (though, as it turns out, most of them didn't go as planned). I'll outline below, but essentially I prepared a mixture of mushroom powder to be mixed in with cacao and on the second morning of our mountain reset we would walk our path. That morning, I woke up before the sun came up - but the sky was already beginning to turn from black to dark, smokey grey. It was a welcome, restful, beautiful night's sleep - and I stepped outside into the chilly mountain air just in time to see the surreal juxtaposition of the crescent moon against the background of the sunrise. I knew it was the perfect morning for this experience.
We prayed over our cacao. Less God'y and Lord'y, more intention setting and conscious opening to the process. We shared any insecurities we felt and made contingencies and plans for 'what might happen'. I mean, when you're going into something like this completely blind you have no idea how it'll feel or how it'll go. We didn't know if we'd suddenly be taken by some overwhelming desire to fly and the un-banistered rooftop terrace could pose a threat. - it's funny, looking back, how very wrong we were about how it would all unfold.
Everything about that morning was a fairytale. Gentle nerves but full trust. Loving preparation. Gratitude for the opportunity to experience something (allegedly?) so profound in such a powerful geographic place. I mean, truth be told, that was ultimately the word that set the stage for this entire experience: gratitude. gratitude. gratitude.
Gratitude to the two adults who stayed behind in Playa to take care of our two tiny humans so that we could be here. Gratitude to the deeply trusted Canadian expat who gave us the source connection for the mushrooms we were about to take. Gratitude to the deeply trusted source who shared his 'craft' with us intentionally, openly, consciously. Who stood with us and shared information, history, truth as he sees it. No secrecy. No shame. No bullshit. Straight up, "This is sacred and I'm honoured to share it with you." Nothing sketchy. Nothing uncomfortable. Just full-blown, open-hearted, soul-shaking gratitude.
The setting could not have been more magical. We decided we would journey beside each other but separate from one another. My mindset was crystal-clear and my heart was open and ready.
As morning mountain air is breezy and crisp, I nestled under our host's oversized duvet comforters and a heavy, handwoven mexican blanket.
0746: grounded, weighted, and warm.