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theblacklabradork t1_ixtficn wrote

I scoured the internet looking for the answer to your question. The consensus was "it happens, bro - chill out! it'll be over soon..." yet day in day out it dragged on. I really thought at one point it might be a good idea to institutionalize myself but after talking with my partner, she reassured me that I was going to be okay.

I came across a comment on reddit about someone who experienced something similar to me after an edible, and it took them 11 days to get over the dissociation. This gave me hope.

For days 1-5 I was in denial it was happening on, coincidentally on vacation so I thought I was being simply lighthearted and 'care-free'. I actually drove with my mom two hours out of state and cannot remember a single moment of that drive nor the way back. It was like my brain was on autopilot and thankfully nothing happened to us. In hindsight I should have pushed more for her to drive but she insisted. Dangerous and stupid, imo. I would be at the table having a lighthearted conversation with my parents, laughing at their dumb jokes and just being... happy? But in a definitely-not-myself way. My parents noticed but assumed I was in simply a good mood from being on vacation... Maybe they even thought I was using edibles during that time because of how silly I found things. I felt like the words I was saying weren't mine - I would be thinking one thing and responding the opposite. Same with my body's movements. One minute sitting down at the table, the next working on something in the yard without a care in the world - even (relatively) dangerous stuff like fixing a riding mower without really knowing what my actions were. I'm a mechanically inclined person, but I absolutely was not of sound mind when making the repairs I did and working on things I did. I really could have put myself and my dad in danger with my carelessness during that time period.

Days 6-9 panic day in and out. Worried that i was going crazy, not being sure of what was real or not. Finally realizing something deeply wrong was happening and I was not getting better. Started panic researching online for cures. Nothing seemed to help and I was getting desperate. My dad (back at home) was asking me to help him with the car and wanted to jack up his car but I flat out told him i was NOT comfortable doing that because it was dangerous and I didn't think I was in my right mind... he seemed to understand what I was hinting at and backed off. Panic attacks while walking the dog, didn't want to drive anywhere (took time off work), and felt nauseous at smells of foods I normally love. I really thought at this point it was a brain tumor. I was agitated more than usual, emotional and did a ton of panic crying at random things. My heart would race from fleeting thoughts, even walking the dog. It was like things were becoming aversions but I could at least recognize it.

Days 9-23 I still had mostly time where I wasn't sure if I was really doing things. Pain still seemed not real. I wasn't sure if I brushed my cheek from a rogue hair or scratched my face raw - it's as if touching my face at all never happened and I was unsure. I would ask my partner if I truly did things or if I imagined them. I had to be careful with what I did and take things one at a time.

Day 24 the dissociation started to lessen. By ~day 28 it got substantially better yet I was still sensitive to smells/taste.

Sorry for the long reply, but I'm hoping someone can find this if they ever find themselves in my position. It was truly terrifying feeling like I was trapped in some sort of other dimension, watching my body do and say things that I had little cognitive control of. It was scary, felt dangerous, and made me extremely cautious moving forward with mind-altering substances. I am not a drinker, don't take any drugs aside from THC (which I have since stopped) and was a light user (one a month or so) at relatively low doses with a low tolerance.

What helped me:

  1. exercise. physical activity that I could 'just do' without focusing too much on (walking on the treadmill), lifting light weights without risk of hurting myself, recumbent bicycle, etc

  2. staying hydrated. I drank probably 96 ounces+ of water a day (three of my hydroflasks) to make sure I was well hydrated at all times. I did this religiously

  3. using more fresh ground black pepper on all my food - some people claim that the terpenes can help with paranoia (anecdotal, but again I was desperate)

  4. browsing the internet to try and get my mind to focus on things other than panic (thanks, Reddit)

  5. letting myself feel the emotions I was feeling without fighting them (panic attacks) but also letting myself out loud say "this is temporary, this will pass"

  6. being able to take time off work/responsibilities (honestly I was LUCKY with this happening when it did)

  7. being completely honest with my partner about what was going on/telling my folks that I was dealing with panic attacks. My partner is my rock and has been for ten years - she's the best. My parents are old-school Eastern european immigrants that don't believe in mental health, so the fact that they were *somewhat* understanding, was a miracle. I didn't disclose everything to them, but they understood that I was having a rough time, so they gave me space when I needed it

  8. telling myself it would pass, eventually - and taking deep, calm breaths. I don't meditate per se, but this helped ground me a bit

Honestly this was an awful experience. In hindsight, I should have asked my partner to get me some CBD to try and counteract the effects, but you live and learn. It was a relatively recent time in my life that I am not interested in using edibles for now, but still have nothing against them nor people who can use them. Hope this helps anyone out there.

YOU WILL BE OKAY! I promise!!!