Alex’s Story

Can you tell me your personal story?

I’m a veteran who carried around some childhood emotional childhood trauma, which I’m sure wasn’t helped by my military experience. I started to suffer from anxiety and insomnia, which could manifest in no sleep or simply poor fits of sleep. I felt I was stuck on some unresolved childhood trauma that I just couldn’t move beyond. I was carrying this past around with me like baggage. I became very good at covering up my anxiety by focusing on goals or accomplishments, but I never got a true sense of enjoyment from reaching my goals. I was always looking for the next external thing to mask what was really going on inside.

“The Wake Retreat provided me a sense of community and intimacy that I, like so many others, have been needing. It has allowed me to be more vulnerable and expressive with others, while also realizing the love and potential I have inside.”

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Cordyceps

Where does energy come from? ATP, or Adenosine Triphosphate, is the primary source of energy for the body. Your body only creates a small amount of ATP, so you need backup stores. Cordycepsmay increase the body’s production of ATP, delivering a surge of energy to the muscles. Our clinicians advise regular supplementation of Cordyceps for a steady stream of pure energy.

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I’m a veteran who carried around some childhood emotional childhood trauma, which I’m sure wasn’t helped by my military experience. I started to suffer from anxiety and insomnia, which could manifest in no sleep or simply poor fits of sleep. I felt I was stuck on some unresolved childhood trauma that I just couldn’t move beyond. I was carrying this past around with me like baggage. I became very good at covering up my anxiety by focusing on goals or accomplishments, but I never got a true sense of enjoyment from reaching my goals. I was always looking for the next external thing to mask what was really going on inside.

I was pumped to hear about Wake immersions because I’d been following this movement of psychedelic therapy for some time. I’d tried micro-dosing by myself, but I’d never had it administered in a clinical setting. The combination of my childhood trauma and military experience had put me in and out of depression over the years. It wasn’t a severe or suicidal depression, but I’d go through up-and-down cycles that could last anywhere from a couple weeks up to a couple of months.

Yes, when I was younger. I had a terrible trip at a concert near Red Rocks, and nobody was paying attention to me. Another one was on LSD, which wasn’t a mental trip, but instead I went on a purely visual ride. In both of these experiences there was no intention setting or focus on getting anything out of the experience beyond the moment itself.

I had a very powerful experience in all three ceremonies. The first ceremony showed me some things I had been hiding from myself and that I needed to work on. I was able to find peace around those things by just letting them be… it freed me up to start a new chapter. I realized the past didn’t have to hold me back anymore. The second ceremony wasn’t strong enough to feel anything, so I had a third private ceremony one-on-one with the therapist. The therapist was Nicole, and she was an amazing facilitator. She helped me work through some things that I had just started to become aware of. In the first ceremony I had seen a box, and I realized this box was full of all my bottled emotions. But I was way too scared to look inside the box. But by the third ceremony I realized that I didn’t even need to look inside the box, I just needed to accept that the box was there. I had been storing a lot of feelings inside me, and now I could let it go. I’m not a crier, and I’m sure my time in the military had compounded my guarded sense in that I don’t allow myself to feel things. But after that experience I let it all out, and I probably cried more in that moment than I have in years. The tears were from a sense of overwhelming joy and relief that I could let it all go.

There was a moment in the ceremony that I felt healing was being done onto me by my ancestors. I felt as if they were giving me the childhood and experience I should have had, but didn’t get in reality. These ancestors were helping me understand how to move forward and manage my life, like guidance to go forward. It helped give me strength.

There was a moment in the second ceremony where I was filled with an understanding of why my life had played out this way, and I was overwhelmed by feeling deeply grateful for this life. That moment gave me compassion for why things have happened the way they did. That insight was priceless and gave me the relief and love I was looking for.
An important aspect of the ceremony is that the therapists blindfold you and lay you down. The sound meditation helps you fall into state of stillness and go deep inside yourself. It’s in that space that you can confront the issues you need to confront. In a normal psychedelic experience, it’s easy to get away from that, like if you take ‘shrooms and go to the beach or to the park.

Once I arrived home, it was easy catch the old default mode of being guarded or defensive. You leave the immersion with a new awareness, but then it’s time to put it into practice. I’ve been giving myself the space to recognize my old patterns and see where they come from. I feel I’ve developed more loving compassion towards myself and also to the people around me. Sometimes I can be my own harshest critic, and the negative self-talk can be very intense. But to have true compassion you need to be able to love yourself. I realized the love I need from other people is the same love that everybody else needs. On a different note, since being back I’ve had no signs of insomnia or bad sleep.

I’m a type-A personality and I was scared of stereotyping the experience of mushrooms. Before the immersion I had been interested in micro-dosing as way of optimizing performance and creativity. But after the ceremonies I have a new respect and appreciation for the full psychedelic experience, where there is post-integration and therapists to support the internal work.

The Immersion was like belonging to a tribe, there was sense of community that I don’t get anywhere else. We shared intimate conversation with everybody on the Immersion at one point or another. Since coming back we’ve been isolated due to Covid-19, but even before that I realized I felt isolated. It’s like people are wearing a mask, and you only get a sliver of who they really are. I haven’t found that sense of community outside, but that’s where compassion and love comes in.

I feel good. I’ve been able to have more awareness, and that’s helped me give myself space and time around things that would normally stress me out. I think the Immersion helped me handle the current quarantine situation better. I stay away from the news and Facebook, or any source that will fill me with unconscious negativity. I realized that part of continuing this personal development isn’t necessarily doing more of meditation or journaling, which I can easily turn into a checklist. It’s been allowing myself to be slower and less productive, without being so hard on myself. As a high-achiever you can’t force yourself to relax, it has to come out naturally.

I do thai Kickboxing several times a week to keep in shape. Taking Cordyceps daily kicks my stamina into high gear especially in the high altitudes of Denver.

Peer Talk

Talk With Alex

Tuesdays, 3:00 PM – 4:00 PM PT // 6:00 PM – 7:00 PM ET
Thursdays, 9:00 AM – 10:00 AM PT // 12:00 PM – 1:00 PM ET

Immerse Yourself

Our immersions center around advanced mushrooms containing psilocybin. Psilocybin is a psychoactive compound being investigated by scientific academia for its potential to restructure brain cells and heal trauma, disorders and illness.

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