Remembering who I am with Ayahuasca

Ayahuasca Series Part 4

When the time came for my Ayahuasca experience, I spent the day with my intentions on the beach and in the water. I felt ready to release what has been holding me back from the light of who I am. Nothing could have prepared me for what happened once I actually had the medicine in me. It seemed like a continuation of my session with the healer my partner had taken me to. It wasn’t time travel. It wasn’t a memory. It was another place, happening simultaneously. As the shaman sang Icaros (magic songs) and the medicine started working on me, I began to see sacred geometric patterns of creation and rainbow light patterns of energy. She sang and sang and stood over me, fanning me as l felt these patterns traveling and swirling through my body. and then very quickly, I was brought through a portal, to the place my mom is now. The dimension or let’s say universe she resides in is light and dark, healing, transformative, full of fairies, elusive spirits, fantastical beings– it was both poetic and magical at the same time. She is the keeper of the elements and protector of the lands.

Her words were “if you ever didn’t feel chosen, you must see that you are now and always have been,” as she flittered about. I felt a reemerging with my soul in that moment. She had wings, appearing sensitive to energy, full of the entire spectrum of light, she was my mother, my guide. She told me, “this is your home- this is where you are from.” Chosen meant I was here to quite literally heal my DNA for my ancestors. She told me it was my job to protect my lineage. We are in trouble because we have forgotten our true nature.

Our world is in crisis because of the absence of consciousness. And so to whatever degree any one of us can bring back a small piece of the picture and contribute it to the building of the new paradigm, then we participate in the redemption of the human spirit, and that after all is what its really all about.” — Terence McKenna

What came next felt so violent, I didn’t think I would wake up from this experience. I couldn’t feel my body anymore in the literal sense, but it seemed like I was rolling around on the floor, flailing and flopping around like a fish. The shaman was again standing over me. This time, telling me to quiet myself because others were in their experience and I needed to consider them. She kept fanning me with feathers to calm me. I kept saying, “this is too much, it’s too much.” As I tried to focus on her and quiet myself, there was a loud, crackling, muffled, male voice telling me “this isn’t for everyone. Maybe you can’t hack it. — Just let your crap go. The crap is too much. What you are carrying is too much. It’s breaking your back.

Ayahuasca leads us through subterranean memories, down into primal dungeons where weve locked away parts of ourselves. These are not just personal recollections, but the ancient, rejected secrets of our species (ayahuasca works with the species, not just the individual), which need to come into the light to be released.”– Kerry Moran, M.A., LPC

I was being transported through memories vis-à-vis, tv screens, expeditiously, flashing hundreds of different images. Initially over a loud speaker, the voice became visible as this guy in skin tight sparkling disco pants. We used to watch American bandstand when I was a kid and it was like the announcer talking to me or someone straight outta Studio 54 in the 80s, but he was actually this guy Bobbi, one of my mom’s best friends. She took care of him during the AIDS pandemic. She had been a caretaker all her life and I had somehow been passed the torch…I remember visiting him in the hospital. He had black sores all over him and tubes coming out of his chest.

So alive now and full of life, Bobbi seemed to be my guide through this part. He said. “Don’t you get it…you have been invited to the party.” As if I was on some sort of secret list. I wasn’t an outsider anymore, but I needed to wait my turn. I wanted things that I wasn’t ready or prepared for. “And you will know when you’ve had enough.” He said. At that moment it was time to take another cup of AYA and I thought I don’t need any more. The shaman said, before the ceremony began, we would know how much to drink when the time came. And all will be revealed. Just know that you must surrender to the medicine.

I said over and over, I have had enough. I can’t do this. I thought I was going to wake up in a hospital if I did at all. I had been here before with no reverence for myself or how I affected others. So how was this any different. How was this psychological dumping of my thinking mind going to liberate my soul and heal my broken heart? Maybe it’s penance, I thought. This is really it, I am not waking up. Beaten, I gave in. I sobbed as I felt my the air moving out of my chest, my hands opened, my jaw unclenched, and my body released. I stopped fighting,

Memories kept flashing like rays of light streaming across the sky. I could feel the sun and warmth on my face. I was a small child breathing the air outside, smelling the grass and the trees, playing in the dirt and riding my tricycle. I could still smell chlorine at the bottom of a dirt swimming pool, standing there with my head cracked open as I heard the bees buzzing so loud I could have been inside the hive itself–my throat swelled shut. Two near death experiences already and this was the third as I felt large sweaty hands around my throat, squeezing, pushing, choking the life out of me. I flashed on my grandmother’s face, gasped for air, received her last breath and in that moment I opened my eyes.

There is no coming to consciousness without pain. People will do anything, no matter how absurd, in order to avoid facing their own Soul. One does not become enlightened by imagining figures of light, but by making the darkness conscious.”

— C. G. Jung

The shaman leaned over me to tell me to come outside and stand by the fire for the closing ceremony. I was conscious, somewhat groggy, and my legs felt like spaghetti. I had been told if I needed to use the restroom that I needed to get myself up. As I looked around there were several people in the room, still in their medicine. Some were sitting up. Some still purging. The time felt so eternal to me, I was sure I would be either last waking up or I wouldn’t wake up at all. What I had been carrying felt so heavy and then suddenly like nothing at all.

With creaky, wobbly knees I tip toed through the dimly lit room to relieve myself. We were told it wasn’t good to look in the mirror. I didn’t but I could feel myself in a way I never did. I could sense the look in my eyes. I stumbled out the narrow doorway to the first area where I saw lush green, tree lights and a fire pit. The shaman stood up, as I really noticed her, in a way that seemed like it was first time. She stood tall, thin, with narrow features, huge dark eyes and hair pinned up by a feather, glowing like an other worldly angel. Her light colored clothing, flowed side to side as the wind blowed and her exquisite traditional jewels sparkled in the light of the fire. She said, “Come. Sit next to me.” As I kneeled, I could hear my mother’s favorite song, ‘Somewhere over the Rainbow,’ belting from the speakers. I laid down again and stared at the shooting stars connecting ancient sacred geometry. Overwhelmed with emotions and tears streaming down my face, exhausted, yet I felt lighter, held, seen and a part of something greater than myself.

A deep sense of love and belonging is an irresistible need of all people. We are biologically, cognitively, physically, and spiritually wired to love, to be loved, and to belong. When those needs are not met, we dont function as we were meant to. We break. We fall apart. We numb. We ache. We hurt others. We get sick.”

— Brené Brown

Just after the sun went down and we had enjoying the songs and the fire, we moved inside to commune and break our fast together. It had been eight hours and there were a few of us on the perimeter of the room still in their process. We sat by the food that had been moved into the center of the room where the flowers and offerings had been gathered. The shaman again asked me to sit next to her as she began to go around the circle to ask about our experiences. I would be last to share, but the first thing she did mention was that,” in the fifty plus ceremonies I have guided, yours was particularly lively, sister,” she said with a little giggle. She went on to say “You showed up for the experience though and ultimately surrendered.” She said. After I shared, she reminded me what my mother tasked me with. She said, with particular importance, to keep this in mind in the days, weeks and months to come, as the medicine will continue to work through me.

Just before dawn, I messaged my partner to come and pick me up. She had been sleeping and told me she felt me my energy before the text came through and had already opened her eyes. She ended up coming in to sit with me and the shaman while we accounted what happened that night. As the medicine continues work on me, everything I thought my life was, is so small now. The invitation to the party was a both a premonition of what’s to come and a proposition to share in the redemption of the human spirit. I have been encouraged to let go of every notion I had about why I am here. To live in the plant medicine world is to experience the full spectrum of being; the dark, the light, the beauty, the magic, the patterns, the diversity, and the rhythms of life.

We must be willing to let go of the life we planned so as to have the life that is waiting for us.”

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *