I went over to the "How To Dose" section at shroomery.org and used the dosage calculator. Figured that for a Level 3/4 trip I'd need about 17.5 grams fresh, so I chopped up 6 shrooms (all our shrooms were about 2.5"-3" long) and put them in some noodle soup, since I'd heard so much about how nasty shrooms are, and I didn't want to throw up. Well, I'm sitting there eating my soup, and my partner ate his straight, with some OJ afterwards. He told me they weren't nasty at all and asked me if I wanted to try them, so I had 3 more straight, for a total of nine. They weren't nasty at all, and I didn't get sick.
I didn't pack anything for the trip. I wanted to take the experience as it came, without bringing any expectations or pre-conceived notions into it. The only thing I was really hoping for was the ego-shredding insights. I went into it nervous, excited, and prepared to learn, more than anything else. I would have gone for a full-blown level five if I had not been strongly advised against it for my first trip.
About a half hour later, my partner is talking about how beat they are, and has his head in the terrarium eating out of it like it's a trough! All of a sudden, I thought I saw one of the candles on the table bend over. I sat up and did a double-take, and the candle started wiggling like a snake coming up out of a basket. I just stared at it and laughed. Then I went into the living room to sit down, and the entire room rippled and folded in the middle before straightening itself out. Then I went out on the deck and the entire landscape rippled as though it was painted on cloth. I got the impression that it was an illusion and that if I could rip the landscape up the middle, another universe would be behind it.
We live in the loft of a barn (1/3 is converted into apartment, the other 2/3 is unfinished) and the unfinished part is my favorite part. It's like stepping into another world, very dim and quiet, dusty and musty. So I went into the barn and started dancing and spinning and laughing. I had a sense of impending freedom. I got to one corner and looked down...WOW! Hovering at about knee level, was a transparent multicolored web of interlocking spirograph patterns (remember Spirograph?) I reached down to touch it but couldn't, so I just looked at it and god, it was beautiful!! Then I looked through the spirograph web to the floor, and the woodgrain of the floor rearranged itself into tribal designs that pulsed.
Then we were just back and forth between the apartment and the barn (you just walk through a closet between the two). We listened to music, we danced together, we laughed a LOT. I found that one of the reasons I preferred the barn was the relative silence. Even though I love music, I will usually, even in "real life", choose silence; it allows more focus and contemplation. This was more important to me than visuals, although of course they were just fantastic, too.
My partner seemed to pick me up off the floor quite a bit (I like the floor and that's where I prefer to sit to begin with). At one point I found myself back on the floor of the barn, lying there staring at the bare rafters and cobwebs. When I turned on my left side, I laughed, and when I turned right, I cried. I laughed hard and cried hard, and couldn't really tell the difference between the two. I had no particular thoughts, it was just raw emotion for the sake of itself. Then I opened my eyes, and EVERY SINGLE THING in the barn, every rafter, every cobweb, every needle on the christmas tree, every part of my partner...were outlined in tiny little multicolored lights. It was like everything had teeny christmas lights around them. Even the trails had lights surrounding them.
Now, my partner had told me one time that when you trip, there's nothing better than the outdoors. I made sure I remembered that going into it, and made a point about wanting to be outside when I hit peak, because I wanted to see the stars. It took about a half hour to get dressed, because we kept getting sidetracked and laughing at each other.("Sensible shoes is what we need"!)
I guess I should mention here that during this trip I was in the beginning stages of a miscarriage, and was in quite a bit of physical pain. I was very, very worried about tripping with this going on, because I did not want to have a bad trip. Some might think it insane to even think of tripping with such a negative thing happening. I believe in facing things and dealing with them head on, and felt that I had dealt with this and come to a comfortable degree of acceptance. I had found out three weeks ago that the baby had died, so I had had some time to gain that acceptance, but I still wasn't (naturally) sure how it would affect me. Well, while I was getting dressed to go outside, a wave of pain hit me, and it sucked me into my head. All of a sudden all I could think of was that I was physically losing this baby. And then all I could think of was our daughter who was stillborn in 1999. And suddenly I was reliving it all over again. Everything fell away from me; time stopped, and the only physical space that existed was the one I occupied, there was nothing but nothingness outside of where I was actually standing, and never had been. And then I BECAME the pain. I WAS grief and sorrow and pain, and nothing else had ever existed, and it was horrible. I could feel myself sliding down, and a high-pitched jaggedness was cracking my soul down the middle. Then my partner grabbed me and spoke to me and I opened my eyes and realized I was screaming. The rational part of my mind told me I had to pull myself out of this, so I focused on him, focused on finding socks, and managed to get out the door.
The moon was almost full, and everything was still and quiet. We live out in the country, on a ten acre farm, so we started walking through the fields. For some reason I was very concerned about my partner's feet getting wet (there were some puddles from the irrigation system). We kept laughing because I kept ending up walking in the "bushiness" (the tall grass between the worn tractor tracks). We walked to the back field, which is the only one not planted or plowed yet. The earth was very soft and it felt like the earth was trying to suck us in. Actually, it felt more like I was melting into the earth, and I welcomed it. I laid down on the ground, feeling the soft coolness of the earth. Then I looked up... and here's the very best part of the whole trip:
The stars. The stars were flashing and exploding like fourth of July sparklers, and the entire sky was lit up with them. And all of the stars were connected by strands of light, like a giant spider web of light in the sky. And the strands of light shimmered and shot through the sky while the stars sparkled. Then, the entire sky was broken up into segments. I was looking at the sky as a whole, but I could see each segment, each one shaped like a prism, and all of them interlocked. And then the stars and the light strands would bend and go in entirely different directions when they hit the edge of their own prism. This alone was worth everything. I would go back again just to see this, which is, incidentally, the way the sky is really supposed to look. We just don't see it. :)
Then we left the field and went out to the road. We just walked down the road holding hands, not saying too much. That's when the "deep thinking" started.
Suddenly, these are the things I understood: that I came from those stars, I WAS one of those strands of light, moving with the speed of thought. That for some reason (curiousity?) I had decided to inhabit a body, that the body was actually quite a wondrous thing, but very confining. I understood that what I consider "life" is only a rest stop for me; that once I leave this body I've borrowed, I'll be able to take my place in the stars again. I knew that I knew every person who had ever inhabited the earth, and wondered why I had forgotten how to recognize them here. I turned and looked at my partner, and remembered knowing him when we were both strands of light/thought/energy. I had a tremendous sense of gratitude that he had chosen to join me here and keep me company. I understood that everything I was seeing and "knowing" were actually memories, memories of my life among the stars, memories of my decision to come to earth. I knew I was seeing my real essence, stripped of all the bullshit that's been added on since my birth, and that my job is to strip away all of the money, ego, power, pride, hatred, etc. In other words, nothing is everything, and once I've learned to strip down to nothing, I'll be free to go. I had such an incredible sense of peace and beauty. I had pure equilibrium. Everything was all right with me, and with the world. Even the waves of pain that hit me at this point were a positive thing, to be viewed as a cleansing experience that this body needs to go through. I welcomed the pain and let it suffuse my body, understanding that though I was not going to bring forth life, I had still carried within me that which I had seen in the skies, and that even the process of loss was a process of life.
We walked this way for a while and I just closed my eyes and smelled the breeze and marveled at who and what I really was, and how I could have forgotten it. I wondered why I had abdicated all my knowledge and freedom and put myself in a position where I had to work for what I had always had to begin with.
Then my partner's trip started getting pretty dark, he started thinking of his sister who had died, and focusing on the horrible accident that took her. I held him while he cried, trying to show him that the most beautiful part of her was not even there when it happened. Then he got through the worst, it seems, although he was still pretty upset. He wanted to turn around and go home because he hadn't brought his cigarettes with him. So we turned around and walked back through the fields.
Strange, how once we were physically off the road, the trip immediately changed. We started laughing again. We talked of how much we loved each other. Then we came upon some honeysuckle, although I couldn't convince myself it was honeysuckle. It looked as though it could have been dappled moonlight through the leaves, it was just gorgeous. Then the smell of the honeysuckle hit me, and it just about took me out of my body. It was so sweet I just wanted to let myself spiral up on the smell and go with it, wherever it went. What a gift.
We got back home and played with our dogs for a few minutes (the cat had ascertained that we were lunatic some time before and had fled). We went inside and talked for a while, talked of the truths I had learned on the road, talked of everything, talked of nothing, laughed at anything. And then...it was over. Just that suddenly, it stopped. My partner went into the barn to get his telescope and look at Mars. I sat at the table outside on the deck, and had an actual physical sensation of myself settling back down into my body, molding myself to the way my body was arranged. It was quite strange. They were some of the best five hours of my life.
Afterwards, I was tired, but didn't feel like I could sleep. Not that I *couldn't* sleep, but that there was so much I wanted to process before I did. It was almost overwhelming, the amount of knowledge I needed to sift through. It was absolutely awe-inspiring. I just felt very quiet.