Bryce Richards
Psyche is powered by Vocal creators. You support Bryce Richards by reading, sharing and tipping stories... more

Psyche is powered by Vocal.
Vocal is a platform that provides storytelling tools and engaged communities for writers, musicians, filmmakers, podcasters, and other creators to get discovered and fund their creativity.

How does Vocal work?
Creators share their stories on Vocal’s communities. In return, creators earn money when they are tipped and when their stories are read.

How do I join Vocal?
Vocal welcomes creators of all shapes and sizes. Join for free and start creating.

To learn more about Vocal, visit our resources.

Show less

The Art of Drugs, and Depression

The Story of How Drugs, Art, and a Midlife Crisis Changed Me Forever

My portrait of world renowned artist Salvador Dalí 

At the age of around four years old, I gained a massive interest in what one could do with a pencil and a piece of blank paper. I would doodle my mind off until I lost myself in my art. I began to improve after that, my parents were astonished at what I was doing at such a young age, they gave me confidence and told me to keep it up and that I have real talent. So as I got older, I would draw and draw all day until my hands could not physically move. Up until middle school started, I was drawing for at least two hours every day. Then, as I said, middle school came along, I had been with all of my friends for many years and middle school is when we all came together as one. All my friends meeting each other. But that's not the point, when seventh grade started I completely dropped off the art grid, I didn’t draw for the entire year, not once. I became too caught up in what my friends thought and hanging out with them every day. Once eighth grade hit I thought I was so cool! I mean, I really believed I was the king of my school, and that made me feel good about myself. Near the middle of eighth grade my friends and I started using drugs, A LOT! Every day we would smoke weed and get high and have tons of fun. That eventually got to my head, all day I would be anticipating how I was gonna get high with all of my friends later. I would do anything just to get a little bit of money to buy some weed, if my grandparents gave me money on a holiday I would spend all of it on my friends and weed, just so we could get high and have fun. All of these things took me away from the one thing I could do best. Now nearing the end of eighth grade, a friend of mine came up to me one day after school and asked me if I wanted to “trip on some acid” with before this point I knew pretty much nothing about hallucinogenics, so I said sure why not, not knowing that I was about to have a life-changing experience. So we took the tablets of acid, we walked around a little forest area thinking, 'Why aren’t we feeling anything?' again, knowing nothing about the substance we just took. I blacked out, only for about two minutes, and woke up to a beautiful landscape above me. The nature looked so vibrant and beautiful and green. I got up and saw my friend staring at my phone, amazed at the tiny little screen, now at this point I thought this is absolutely amazing why can’t I do this all the time? My mom, a few months before this occurrence, had signed us up for jiu-jitsu for no particular reason, it was on Tuesdays and Thursdays and started at 4:00; she was very committed to it and never liked to be late. The day I took acid was a Thursday, of all days. I got out of school at 2:15, my friend and I walked to this forest area that was literally two minutes from my house. I looked at my phone in my friend's hand and saw the time “3:45.” I then panicked, obviously because I was in my entering stage of a strong hallucinogenic drug that I had never taken before, I was kind of already freaking out, as most people do. So I started running up to the street that led to my home, my friend followed in a very confused and obviously tripping acid manner. Once we got to the street, I told him I had to hurry up and go. My mom then called me, this is when my nerves kicked in and I was on the verge of an absolute heart attack. I answered trying my best to not sound like an idiot, she told me to hurry my ass up, so that’s what I did. I ran down the street and that’s when the hallucinations started to really get harsh, the street looked like it was a flowing river that just kept going, so I had to really push myself to get to my mom's car. I finally got there acting as I usually would, in my mind I thought, 'I’m totally in the clear.' Then the uncontrollable smiling started, my mom looked at me like I was guilty of something (which of course I was) she asked “Have you been smoking pot?” 

I said, “No of course not!” 

She responded with just a normal “Okay.” I began to try and breathe in and out slowly to relax myself, it worked. Once we got to the jiu-jitsu gym my mom went in and I sat in the car telling her I’d be right in. Now this is when I finally had time to myself to fully try to understand what was going on, I took a minute, got my thoughts together, and went in. Now all the people in this place knew me, I mean we were like a bunch of neighborhood friends, so in my mind I thought I’ll be fine I can play it off...that was a very stupid thought. I had no idea that my pupils were so dilated at that time, they were very noticeable. I walked in, sat down, and just watched the kids do their classes. About ten minutes in I decided to go call some of my friends and tell them what was going on and ask for guidance (I had zero friends that had ever done acid). 

So I did and I was pacing around outside for at least an hour and a half calling friend after friend with the same result, “I don’t know man, have fun,” hang up. So it came time for my class, at this point I was a lot more relaxed with the hallucinations and felt very happy and enlightened. I decided I would tell one of my good friends, who I would spar with, that I was tripping balls, he was about a year older than me so I trusted him. He told me, “Don’t worry bro I got you.” So I got through the class, which was an hour and 15 minutes long, but in my mind it felt like four hours, because time slows down a lot when you're tripping hard. On the drive home I was in the stage where I would come to profound realizations and my vocabulary level went up by ten, and my IQ went up by 50. I felt amazing, I felt like I could decode the universe in my head, IT.WAS.ASTOUNDING! Once I got home I settled down in my room, thinking about all these incredible thoughts no normal-minded person could even fathom. I took a shower, and went to bed at around 5:30 AM, when the effects just about wore off. I eventually told my best friend, he was at first mad at me, but once I explained to him my experience and basically acid as a whole, he couldn’t wait to try it himself. So, about five months later I took acid again, this time knowing much more and being well prepared, the trip was incredible, so much better than the first. I began to become obsessed with tripping, because of how much it enhanced my thoughts and my mind and everything. I then took acid for a third time a couple weeks later, this was my first time taking two tabs, I had my best friend with me (different from the one I mentioned earlier) and gave him two tabs as well. I had five in total, telling my best friend that I mentioned earlier I would save one for him, and that I did. Me and my other friend rode our bikes down to my friend's house, about halfway to his house we started tripping, VERY, VERY hard!! We laughed our asses off until we got close to my friend's, this was when my good friend started to freak out saying he saw demons and clowns, he began to cry hysterically, so I grabbed him and told him he was fine and he was just having a bad trip. He calmed down, this incident made me feel very guilty, I felt like I did this to him. Anyway, we got to my best friend's house and gave him his one tab, I gave him a small rundown on what to expect and then me and my friend left. We eventually parted ways and both ended back up at our own houses. That trip changed me, permanently. My perspective of humanity, society, and basically everything was completely different now, but that was not the last time. I moved mid-way through middle school, far from all my friends. This made me kind of sad but I was great at riding my bike so if I wanted to hang out I would just ride down to my friend's houses. I started high school, I knew absolutely no one, I tried to keep myself non-social, if people spoke to me, I would speak back but that’s about it. I became less energized and just told myself to get through it. After the first semester I was done, so sick and tired of the work and the people, my anger was at an all time high, every day I would come home and yell and scream at my family for small, little things. I rarely left my room, I rarely left my house, only to see my friends who were the only people that made me happy. Now let’s backtrack a bit, around September was when I started to take acid again, and I'm talking two to three tabs every two to six weeks for three months straight. After all that, I was different, I thought better and faster, I spoke faster and more efficiently, I felt way better. Acid basically got me through the first semester. Now after all this time of tripping acid and realizing so many things, I began to draw again, and I did it a lot, it kept me occupied and out of touch with reality, which is exactly where I wanted to be, and that’s what acid did for me too. Around November my acid supply was cut off, I was PISSED!! So I spent about a good month and a half with no drugs at all. In January, after about a month with no drugs, I couldn’t take school anymore, now acid completely changed my perspective on the school system and I thought it was corrupt and just the worst, so I told my mom I was done, I refused to go to school I did not care what the consequences were. After about a week of no school I wasn’t sleeping for days on end, which caused my mental state to break down very quickly. I began hearing voices and having mood swings. I told my mom I was not right mentally so she took me in for a psychological evaluation. I was evaluated, and the evaluators believed I needed to put into inpatient treatment (mental facility) so I was sent to a mental hospital on a 72-hour hold. I woke up my first morning there and was greeted by smiling faces looking my same age. The people at this place were incredible, they had such similar feelings and situations like me, I felt so at home. We all got along so well and they are now my greatest friends. I got out of the facility after six days. I was diagnosed with severe depressive disorder, and severe stress disorder. I felt better though, I had all my friends contact information and I could finally sleep in my own bed again. Now I didn’t really care that the situation I was in was quite a big blow to my entire family, but that’s because I completely lost all care do just about everything...I still don’t care. Anyways, I kind of just sat at home all day every day, getting closer and closer to truancy court without knowing it. I drew at least 12 hours a day, getting lost in my art. It was now late February, I had been drinking and smoking just to make the depression go away. My mom was also drinking, too much. I felt guilty because I was the cause of her pain and stress. I had to have a meeting with my school, and I clearly expressed to them that the school system is what caused all this pain to me, and that I would not be returning no matter what. So they offered me a chance at online school, and I took it. That was weeks ago, here I am’s March 25th, 2018 at 10:45 PM. I’m lying here trying to compile everything that’s happened to me over the past year, how my life and self have changed all due to a mind-enhancing drug, and my talent in drawing. My small story may not be entertaining, but it’s a yourself, I spent time pleasing everyone else and worrying about everyone else, putting myself at the bottom. I then realized one's self should always come first, that’s how you gain the happiness and freedom you’ve been searching for, let go of your care for the small things, care about your family, your life, and most importantly...yourself.

Now Reading
The Art of Drugs, and Depression
Read Next
5 Ways I 'Calm' Down