I have been wanting to try it for years, but with the fact that the system had diagnosed me with bipolar and I take medication, nobody accepted me. Also around me my family and friends worried and held me back, trying to scare me.
In the end, I made the decision to try it, I wanted to have the experience, it had caught my attention and I wanted to know what it felt like.
I’m going to tell you the story from the beginning. I hope I don’t bore you.
Well, it turns out that a friend who didn’t know about my past life, although we’ve known each other for 4 years. In that time we have supported and helped each other as people, but intimately and personally we hardly know each other. He told me that Ayahuasca had changed his life and that he recommends that I try it.
I had my opportunity. I did not hesitate. He gave me the contact number, I contacted them and they quickly answered me to interview me by video call and added me as confirmed! I had a day and time for the ceremony.
Of course, I hadn’t said anything about my bipolar label and nightly medication since 2000. I didn’t want to be rejected.
At first, I decided I wouldn’t tell anyone until I had done it but since I made the appointment about three months in advance, in the end, I did mention it to several friends.
I told one of my friends that had recommended to me that I watch a Netflix documentary that talks about Ayahuasca, where even a person died. My friend wanted to change my mind about ayahuasca and give up the whole idea but in the end, it encouraged me more.
For me, that documentary did the opposite, it encouraged me to try it and know about Ayahuasca.
Two days before the day of the retreat, I mentioned it to two other friends and what pain in the ass they were! It seemed that I was going into an operating room with the probability of dying.
I had to stop my medication, stop smoking marijuana, not eat animal fats and continue to follow a strict diet. I took it seriously, and that’s how I more or less did everything.
By stopping the medication three days before, well, three nights I slept badly. I was tired, I couldn’t stop yawning, but at the same time, I couldn’t sleep. I was looking forward to doing the ceremony and starting my medication and getting a good night’s sleep.
I decided to quit marijuana two weeks before and the truth is that for me. Life without marijuana is like sex without vibrators and suckers, it doesn’t make sense! I thought it was a start to quit, but the truth is that I don’t want to quit marijuana, it helps me a lot in sex and in my solitary life.
I began to consider it and to think more about the experience of spending 24 hours with my friend and living an experience that could possibly unite us more and get to know each other better.
The day arrived. We were at the place of the ceremony and our journey was about to begin.
We spread out our mats, some were better prepared than others with thicker and more inflatable mattresses. We made ourselves comfortable, greeted each other, took a seat and started.
Firstly they do a ritual with a pipe where they put some powder in and blow it through your nose. It goes into your nostrils and it’s a bit unpleasant, a strong internal itch in your head, but it passes quickly.
Each step is explained to you with kindness, delicacy, and tranquillity, which puts you in that spiritual world that shamans transmit. I would say the masters of the ayahuasca ritual.
They pass by you one by one, we are 12 participants.
Again they demand our attention from our seats to give us further explanation. This is all about ayahuasca. They explain to you that there is the first shot and that if you don’t notice the effects after a while, you can decide to take a second one on your own.
We took the first round and after a while, some of us got up, among them my friend Carlos for a second shot, so I was encouraged.
The ayahuasca was already beginning to take presence in the room, among others. I didn’t notice it at that moment, so I dedicated myself to observing others.
We were three women and twelve men, of which a woman and two men were the hosts of the ceremony and the rest were the guests.
Each of us had to be independent, we couldn’t get close to others, and you have to let ourselves go and do what our body asks of us.
Quickly, some began to vomit, others to move their bodies, others sitting down and others lying down like me.
Those in charge of the group guided the group with music, words, dances, and instruments.
It bored me, my body was so tired that it didn’t feel like doing anything, just lying down and thinking. I thought what a pain in the ass, I can’t talk to anyone, I can’t listen to the music that I like and I haven’t noticed anything in my body yet.
Well, I couldn’t, I think it was my paranoia.
I closed my eyes and concentrated on the external environment, on listening to the shamans and the music, but in silence and in my place. It was when I closed my eyes that I began to see the images as a mosaic of colours and at the same time with black and white pieces.
Just at that moment one of the shamans comes to me, he watches me and sees that I’m fine outwardly and asks me to take another dose. I told him no (inside I said I don’t want substances that make me sleepier) but in the end, I said yes. I drank it, I went straight to the bathroom and it was when you start to see the lines on the floor, on the tiles, that you see drawings and they move.
I returned to my seat, closed my eyes and I began to notice the Ayahuasca stronger in my brain and body that was when I realized that it was like ingesting hallucinogenic mushrooms and that was when the fear of Ayahuasca went away and I thought, It’s not going to do anything bad to me, just make me high. Let’s see how long it lasts.
Lying down and with my eyes closed I began to listen to the words of the shamans who wanted to remove emotions and that was when I began to cry. A feeling of sadness came over me and suddenly the image of my partner and then that of my mother came to me. My partner’s I knew where it came from and it passed quickly, but my mothers became stronger.
She has been sick in her head and body in her house for months and it is a story that is in my head and has me worried and I took it out at that moment. I couldn’t stop crying and that’s when I thought Cristina: “you can’t do anything at that moment, don’t blame yourself”, so I disconnected from that sadness and tried to enjoy the moment.
I’ve spent three years growing mushrooms and each time I made them stronger, so for me, Ayahuasca was just another mushroom but with the difference that I didn’t take it in my environment nor in my own way.
Suddenly I was placed in an environment and music that was not mine. I wasn’t having fun and it wasn’t teaching me anything new. I was having a high that reminded me of when you go to bed drugged and can’t get over it and want it to go away (what we Spaniards call “teching” staring at the ceiling in English).
My brain could not stop thinking and I could not see the moment when the ceremony would end. It had only been two hours.
At that moment I remembered the parties I used to throw at my house, that when I was no longer interested in continuing, instead of kicking people out, I left them at my home so they could continue with the party and I would leave French style (leave without saying anything) I would take my medication and go to sleep. It was automatic in less than 15 minutes I was listening deeply to the music in the background and the next thing was to wake up the next morning and it was all silence.
I wanted to take my medication. I became obsessed, but I didn’t have it. I even looked just in case, and when I started looking in my fanny pack, the girl who worked in the ceremony approached me to check what I was doing, and what I was looking for. I just had a sleeping mask and I told her that, my mask was used to close my eyes and live my own images. This was the first thing that occurred to me. What was I going to tell her, I’m looking for my medication to sleep!
Well, maybe it would have been for the best. I don’t know! Why keep lying?
My friend Carlos did nothing but vomit and I was looking at him and his face and it made me not want to look at him anymore. Another person was dancing a dance that made his whole body tremble, I don’t know if he had practised in dance ceremonies and that day everything came out or that just dance came out of him. Others were lying down like me living their internal paranoia, others were sitting and looking at infinity.
After guiding us with music, drums, and guitar, they indicate that they are going to pass by each one with a light in their eyes. They explain much more, but my French did not understand it well. I got in position to receive it and it turns out that they were drops that you put in your eyes and direct contact, fuck! It was a burning itch that I jumped from my seat. They tell you that it’s healing your eyes because of the tears of suffering, but what was going on, was stinging my eyeballs. Luckily it happened quickly but honestly, I won’t try it again. Besides, I think it doesn’t do anything. Everything is a suggestion, I imagine, as we want to believe it. I’m not saying it doesn’t work, even suggestion often works better than the medication itself.
The ceremony continued, some walked around, others danced, others sat static and watched and I wanted everything to happen. I wanted to get the ayahuasca out of my body, I wanted to throw it up, but how could I put my fingers down my throat?! I thought it was not correct.
I found a piece of candy in my bag and I thought, sugar will come in handy to make it go away. I didn’t know what to do to get over it. I didn’t want to be high. I wanted to go home, smoke a joint, take my medication and go to sleep in a comfortable bed. However, I had to be there, freezing cold because the doors were open. Those who wanted to go out into nature could but it was really cold and I could only be inside the sleeping bag with my head covered.
From time to time I would come out from under the blanket, look at the others and still see the same thing, each with his own theme. I thought that it would end soon and that I was going to write about this absurd experience that I had gotten myself into. The entire experience felt silly. It was not my method for Ayahuasca ingestion.
Suddenly they stopped the music and asked us to sit down and pay attention. They began to recite the prayer of the mirror, the philosophy of the self. Some very wise words are now everywhere in personal development courses and ceremonies.
Then they talked to us about another substance that they kept calling the Kambo medicine, at around 2 in the morning. They gave us an explanation of what it brings.
I understood that it was the next day in the morning and that you had to be fasting to take it.
Then they told us that we could get up and interact with each other.
Everyone got up, I got up, and I see Carlos who begins to greet one of the groups with a hug. I start doing the same, going one by one giving a hug and asking about the experience.
I did not stop saying that my own medicine was sleep and that if I fasted all night it would not help me sleep.
It turns out that the intake of the other medicine was at that time and I didn’t know about it. I thought it was the next day in the morning.
I had already prepared myself to sleep inside my sleeping bag, with earplugs and an eye mask, and when I been trying to sleep for about half an hour, but without success, I heard another round of vomiting and I thought, are people still vomiting from ayahuasca? I did not understand anything.
It was that they had taken the other substance, the Kambo medicine.
Surely if I had taken it, I would have vomited, which was what I wanted before. I didn’t know what effect it would have had on me. The fact is that everyone ended up defeated and sleeping and I like a fool counting sheep to sleep. I think I managed to sleep for two hours.
We all slept in the same room with a window that when the day dawned the light entered directly, so we began to wake up very early.
It was a slow awakening, with calm music and a little food in the stomach.
Then we sat in a circle and we were each asked to talk about our experience.
I was not entirely sincere, as I had not been from the beginning. But in general, it was a positive experience and I had wanted to know what it would be like.
I proposed that maybe they should include more of the ceremony during the day and the organizer replied that they were looking for a state of non-awareness that can only be achieved in the dark. From my humble experience, I have achieved that unconscious awareness within the light of day and I knew I would enjoy it more. I know myself.
The testimonies were concluded and then we began to say goodbye individually to each other.
I told some of them that I was taking medication and had not come rested or prepared for what I was going to experience. The answer was that I should do more ayahuasca sessions and come more prepared mentally and physically. I already know that I am going to find myself and that it would surely help me to stop my medication.
I take my medication because it is very difficult for me to sleep more than 5 hours without it and if I start to sleep so little I start with bipolar psychotic episodes and precisely psychotropics are not the best for insomnia. Insomnia could be treated naturally, but if I live in a quiet place where the light doesn’t come in until dawn and I can’t stop thinking, that I have to get up because I have a lot of things to do, so that’s probably when most of us who suffer from insomnia we wouldn’t need sleeping pills. But Ayahuasca sessions are not exactly to treat this type of disorder. On the contrary, they can mess you up.
Psychotropics are substances that help bring out what you have inside and they do come in handy for those who leave everything inside and never take drugs. They are substances that also help bring out your spirituality.
In the way that it is being used, I really see that it is becoming a business but I am not criticizing it, I see it as a good thing. In the end, we have to invent ways to make a living and this is a great experience for the client.
Would I drink ayahuasca again?
With my group of friends and without having stopped my medication and of course without quitting marijuana, almost certainly yes. But like this time, with a group so organized that it seems that you take medicine, clearly not. In addition, I would start it in the morning and in an open space.
From my point of view, it was a ritual of personal development that in one hour with the help of Ayahuasca and with psychological and spiritual techniques with music and recitals. It moves your emotions in a few hours, they can make you see what you can’t see in your whole life by yourself. Especially for those who have never tried psychotropic substances.
It is clear that with single ingestion, I cannot give a real opinion of what ayahuasca is, or what it produces, but what I can say is that it put me a little in my state of consciousness, like when I am in the feelings of a breakdown. My reality that night was that one of the guests was part of the group of shamans and that everything was an experiment to see what Ayahuasca could do with me. It’s the same thing I’ve felt in other breakdowns, that the clients were doctors or people who came to see how I was doing because I’m one of the chosen ones in the experiment. I don’t know why I have that self-centeredness that I think the world revolves around mine and what I feel is so real, that it’s hard not to believe it. I don’t know how I do it because I always end up in the psychiatric hospital and that is precisely the fear that I, my friends and my family have with this type of thing. They are afraid that I could end up in a psychiatric hospital that is not the place for me.
I could be almost certain that if I had continued to drink that black liquid that is Ayahuasca (a mixture of various plants from the Amazon) and had continued without sleeping, I think I would have entered that reality that I have created throughout the five breakdowns that I have I have had in about 15 years.
On the one hand, I would not mind doing it because I would like to see how far I can go without being locked up, since I find myself in a reality that is incredible, especially in the last three breakdowns. But I think that Switzerland is not the best time for psychiatric admission. It would be very expensive and my efforts of years could be ruined, as happened to me in my efforts during the 3 years of Bali. I ended up hospitalized and lost the respect and support of everyone around me at the time. Great. Some of my friends at the time stopped talking to me. One day I will write about that breakdown—the one from Bali. It was magical.
The shamans of the Amazon have known how to take care of Ayahuasca so that it does not spread in an irrational and unconscious way, since it is a strong drug or medicine. That helps you create your own reality, but first, clean everything you carry inside. It makes you purge, it would be the spiritual version.
Scientifically, it depends on what state of consciousness you are in, you can:
Or consider it a medicine, which I would also say is toxic to the human body because when it enters your body it makes you vomit (I did not vomit, I must have my body used to this type of substance), but many people do vomit. And it is clear that something that makes your body vomit by itself is because it is intoxication, it rejects it. There I think that Ayahuasca is telling you, this substance is not for your body and you vomit.
Or you can consider it one of the psychotropic drugs that stay in your body and reaches the brain causing states that we cannot reach by ourselves and us to have visual and sometimes sound hallucinations that we can reach very pleasant states of consciousness.
It is a journey for which we have taken all that and some other things. It’s a lot like the trip to the hallucinogenic mushrooms. But I should have more experience to make a claim like that.
Important: never lose respect for her. With this type of substance you should never trust, they can always leave you in the other reality and in this reality, it means that you are crazy in this one and that means that they lock you up in a psychiatric hospital. The current psychiatric hospitals are horrible. An adventure can end in a degradable lockdown.
Would you try it or have you already tried it?
Could you write it in the comments below, please? Thank you!