I was put in the psych ward for a few days after attempting suicide with monoxide and benzos. They had started me on an antidepressant a day before these symptoms began.
A day went by and I began to notice that my eyes had been dilated and my palms were sweaty. I felt plunged into a world of metaphorical and abstract thought. I connected easily with others, knew when it was my turn to speak and what to say to make the situation better, knew when to enter or leave a room, and could describe my feelings and concerns well to the doctors. After two days of not being able to sleep or eat much and not feeling tired or hungry, I explained to my doctor my symptoms, which he shrugged off.
I began drawing easily for the first time in a year, all really fun, intense doodles which I later looked at with a sense of overwhelming pride and partial confusion as to how I managed to draw it in the first place.
I began combing my hair excessively, refused to eat meat, and the idea of smoking again didn't appeal to me. I had several moments where I felt strange in my body and felt the need to shower excessively. I assumed that the combing habit I'd developed suddenly was a replacement for smoking at first, but after a day of doing this in front of others, I was acknowledged multiple times for having "great hair" and kept doing it as an act for others. [As of present, because of this, I no longer have excessive dandruff.] This is when I realized something was up. I remembered having this train of thought when I was tripping on LSD, but not to this subtle of a degree. A complete change had occurred in me.
One thing I'd noticed easily was my ability to connect dots, latch onto the vibe of a group's dynamic [in therapy sessions], and observe. I had taken note that the group present was very unique for this setting and assumed that it weren't always like this. I had scored out lucky. After a few days of profoundly impactful conversations, "signs from god", and enlightening thoughts, I assumed I was undergoing a reform in thought.
The last day in the psych ward, before I was transferred to another program for lower-risk patients, I hung out with an elderly lady with memory issues named L. I began mimicking her distinct way of speaking and her comedic actions, so much so when I later described my transfer to others, I described it as, "I arrived as L."
Upon my integration into the new group of other patients, I introduced myself and connected easily with the others until it was time for bed. Upon going to my room, I struck up a conversation with my roommate and established that we not only had extremely similar life situations, but we thought the same way about many issues. We talked until five in the morning and I remember very well, if I weren't combing my hair or shifting around in bed listening to her, my eyes were locked onto hers, so much that the image of her face is burned into my brain better than anyone else.
She told me several times that I seemed 'very spiritual' and 'well-connected', which I'm sure at the moment I had been, even though that's proven to be quite the opposite for me during most of my life. Although I was raised in a strict, Catholic environment up until I was a teenager, when I turned 16, I completely rejected God and religion due to never establishing any significant or meaningful relationships during my growth. Looking back, I realize how angry and alone I felt and know I was just retaliating. It wasn't until recently, in my mid-20's, when I had finally latched back on to believing in something complex/simple and connected, although my views still aren't fully developed.
The last two days of my transfer, I began wondering if I were to remain like this for the rest of my life, and if so- how much better it would be that I could capture the positive essence of others and reflect it back to strangers in a profound way. I felt excited but perplexed about my new self. I was told by both doctors and patients 6 times throughout these five days that I 'reminded them of someone' or 'seemed very familiar.'
I knew it wouldn't last long though. By the fifth day, I began wearing down in every sense. The "L" persona began sliding and I could hear the voice I was used to coming back, drawing became harder to do, speaking became harder, keeping my eyes open became difficult. They gave me Benadryl and I eventually went to sleep on a Sunday and didn't wake up much until Monday morning.
I felt 'back to normal' in every sense and relayed my dread to my doctor. I told him about my last few days and the feeling of emptiness I was experiencing now and how it was very relevant to how I felt before I was dumped in the psych ward. I took Benadryl for one more day until I stopped, and felt a lot better for the duration of my treatment. I assumed I was too sensitive to the sedative in it and matched it with the drowsy, empty feeling I got the next day after taking benzos to sleep.
I mulled over my five-day experience silently and summed up my abstract thinking, ease of connection with others, physical symptoms, and creative quirks to either a lengthy and subtle LSD flashback induced by the environment and the introduction of an SSRI or drinking the water they gave me. The nurse I later described the experience to in great detail found it appealing and agreed.
I explained to her that it felt like I were 'channeling God' and knew with ease what to do or say. She told me I seemed much more grounded than when I came in, but it was like speaking to a completely different person now.
Although I'm still not sure I will ever know for certain what caused such a mild, but greatly impacting effect, for that length of time- I thought it would be fair to submit this, regardless.