Citation: Rodime. "Good for Me but Not a Good Experience: An Experience with Tabernanthe iboga (Root Bark Capsules) (exp100600)". Erowid.org. Aug 12, 2015. erowid.org/exp/100600
I'm not a recreational drug user, though I have been in the (far) past. I've abstained from alcohol for the past 12 years, and rarely drink caffeine. Also, I'm built like an ox, and typically not affected by the standard dose of anything (prescription pain meds, dentist shots, OTC pills, etc...).
So I took 3 capsules while working on a side project for work one day, and started to feel strange about an hour later. I had forgotten about taking the pills, and had planned to take a low dose over the period of a week, with the hope that it would work on a physiological level below my consciousness.
I started to feel wobbly, and couldn't stand. The sort of wobbly you get when you're just past the line of having drunk too much, and need to make your way to the washroom but can't get there fast enough.
I found my way to my bed, and I felt sad, for no reason. I stared at the mirror by my bed for (what seemed like) hours, and felt ashamed of the way I had cared for my body (I'm built like a fat ox).
I continued thinking about all the good things others do for me, how I'm not upfront with others, and how I didn't deserve the goodness I felt in my life. I got out of bed and told my significant other that I loved them dearly, before wandering back to lie down.
As I lay there, I couldn't feel my body unless I concentrated. I just lay there in peace, and I had not felt like I was in danger (the way one might when taking other stronger substances).
I started to have some images come up on the back of my retinas, the way they do when you're closing your eyes and you see flashes of lights and all that. They weren't visions, just light flashes, but I thought I could imagine people in them - no one specific, just images of people.
Then, my mind started to generate other images, like in a sensory deprivation tank. First I saw the ocean floor, the way the light reflects through the waves and I could focus on an area and get slightly closer but it would soon disappear.
Eventually, I was able to focus on the floor, and my mind would replace the image with something as though I was zooming in to a deeper level.
I didn't like how the images were appearing on their own, and disappearing when I focused. My partner came in, and asked what was wrong. I remembered the iboga, and told them. After they suggested that I might be poisoned, I started to worry.
The imagery changed - a man, greased back hair, thin and vampire-looking, angled face like a creepy old man that is tiny ... kept appearing telling me you're mine, you're mine. At the same time, I started repeating John 1:1 (I was raised religious). I was thinking about my relationship with God, and this image that looked like an evil man kept insisting that I was now his.
My partner quickly popped online and did their own research on iboga, coming back to tell me that I was going to be okay. I was able to picture the ocean again, and as I zoomed in, I saw a worm on a leaf or a bacteria in a petri dish, as just one part of a system. Although I still thought I was going to die (thanks to my partner's suggestion that I was poisoned).
I also pictured a box, that expanded because a green goo had filled in the inside. It made me think that I was the box and the goo was filling in the cracks. I was a shell, a container, and I was being filled by nature - if I would let it.
All of a sudden, I realized that I was just one part of a bigger system. That reassured me a little, but not really. I hated myself for all the bad things I had done, and I couldn't think of any of the good things.
I'm writing this the morning after (I took the pills around noon, yesterday). I still can't think of anything good that I've done and I feel like a bit of a zombie right now. I didn't sleep - it kept me up all night, not with the visions, just kept me awake and energized.
Time is going very slowly. I have been awake (more or less) since yesterday at 9am, and it feels like it has been a week. Every time I close my eyes, I think I've spent several minutes with them closed, and it is only a few seconds. This is a different feeling than sleeplessness (which I've done a lot).
** post script **
I want to do a larger dose, however my current partner is not supportive and would only grudgingly be my sitter. I thought I could take a small dose without any obvious physical effects, and I was wrong. I thought I'd be okay without a sitter, but my sleepless night was only bearable because of my sitter - each time I started to fall into a paranoid state, wondering if it would ever end, or if I'd be permanently changed (like the first time on shrooms from a new source), my sitter would talk me out of it.
My experience changed the way I acted for the next two weeks, and it was a very vivid experience. The habits I stopped (and the new ones I started) during that time are still with me, 3 months later. There are other things I wish I'd changed in that time, but I was in a different headspace for almost a week - I could only follow my pre-established goals, that I had written down as long-term objectives.
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