Introduction from R&R
Our brave client completed her sixth Ketamine session and provided her reflections on the process and its impact on her. When combined with her own open-mindedness and hard work, these Ketamine treatments made some significant, lasting changes in her life and in her outlook. As usual, she describes it far better than we could, so ENJOY the last entry in The Ketamine Diaries!
Ketamine Reflections: Spring
It’s been about 6 weeks since my last ketamine infusion. I wanted to take some time and sit with my experience before I wrapped it up into words. If I’m honest, it’s been hard–daunting almost–to describe my experience, to make it tangible. How on earth does one describe how tripping balls, for lack of better words, turns into positive mental health? It seems almost far-fetched that paying to feel high for an hour at a time would equate to lifelong changes, and being a bit of a skeptic, I wanted some time and space to really decide for myself if this experience meant a lasting brain change.
Each session got more warm and fuzzy and glorious, and I found the sweet spot at session three. After my sixth and final session, Ryan and Rachel gave me my follow up instructions, and I went on my way. I was advised that everyone is different and that most people will need a “touch up” so to speak at some point during their life (a single treatment to help restore brain chemistry to this current level) and I am to reach out accordingly.
The first few days, like after anything new, I over analyzed every interaction. Am I a changed woman? Did this infusion make me an entirely new person?? Am I amazing now? The short answer is no and also yes–if that makes sense? I didn’t walk out of those 6 sessions completely healed of every life trauma or as an entirely new version of myself. Sadly this wasn’t magic in the way that we all hope every new fad diet and 3 days in the gym will instantly give us a rock hard bikini body.
Instead I started to notice that each day I felt a little…lighter. Then one day, I woke up and it felt like spring. Any native North Idahoan knows what I mean. The peppy, awake, light feeling that we all get when the gloomy sky turns into bluebird days and the snow finally melts. There is no better feeling than surviving the never-ending winter. This is the only way I can really put into words how I felt. One day I noticed that I was waking up easier, feeling lighter, happier and more like engaging in the world again. I kept that feeling to myself for a while, skeptical that it would fade. After all, we are far from a North Idaho spring. I can honestly report that it hasn’t faded..
For me the ketamine has made me light again. It removed the weight of depression and that constant heaviness I felt in my limbs, my head, behind my eyes. I feel less irritable, less anxious and just generally better. The most surprising part for me has been the ability to set better boundaries. I, like most people who grew up in a high conflict home, seriously lack boundaries. After all, if I don’t say yes and appease everyone, won’t things erupt into conflict? It turns out, no, not always. It is ok to say how you feel or even say ‘no thank you’ to things that don’t serve you. The interesting part has been that I haven’t been actively trying to work on my boundaries; they have just come out less filtered. The fear and guilt cycle that I normally have hasn’t been there. In general, that ever present anxiety hasn’t been there. This has also been the case when I have had to interact with family members that cause me great stress and anxiety. I haven’t been as triggered by them. The ketamine somehow has made me have more ambivalence to their jabs or bad behavior. Maybe this is what normal brain chemistry feels like? I’m not entirely sure, but to be honest it’s wild.
So no, I am not a completely changed woman. I still have plenty of generational trauma to unpack and move through. I haven’t broken up with my therapist just yet, but I am a noticeably better version of myself. I am lighter, less anxious, more engaged. I am happy that I went through this process and am grateful that it didn’t come with the side effects that medications did when I tried them in the past. If I’m completely honest, I also am grateful that I have the ability to get a touch up treatment if I start to slip back into the fog of depression or anxiety again. It feels like a bit of a safety net. For now though, I will sink into this warm, light spring that I have stepped into.
Conclusion from R&R
If you struggle with depression and anxiety you are not alone, and you’re not stuck! We hope you find our client’s story to be encouraging. Ketamine could be the missing piece in your story. It could be the treatment that helps to rewire your brain and allows you to step into spring as well! Contact us to learn more about Ketamine for depression and anxiety.
xoxo Rachel and Ryan