Sunday, January 06, 2013

So I just got back from Drop of Calm in Nampa, which is a floatation center. They have isolation tanks with water mixed with about 800 lbs of Epsom salts. You float in the dark and quiet, in water which is exactly skin temperature. All outside worries are put aside while you float. You let go of stress and depression and aches and pains and just let the salt water support you. I received a gift certificate for a float from my hubby (thank you!) and went today. I went a little early and was greeted by a nice lady who offered the oxygen bar. I was hesitant at first, but decided to try it out. The oxygen came in different scents. I believe mine was peppermint. I didn't notice too much effect, except that it seemed to wake me up a bit. After about ten minutes of talking, I took off the oxygen and she took me back to the sensory deprivation tank. I chose the smaller one, which is less humid than the larger. The room was large enough for the tank and a small shower. Special shampoo was provided so that the tanks would stay clean. Ear plugs were also made available. I made use of them, as I hate getting water in my ears. So I stripped, showered, and opened up the lid to the chamber and looked in. It looked like something that wanted to bake me and I wondered why I was doing this. Then I remembered the incredible stress I've been going through and decided to take the plunge. I sat down inside the tank, then closed the door. Complete darkness. Whether my eyes were open or closed, I saw only pitch black. I settled onto my back and found that holding my hands up behind my head was the most comfortable. I bumped into the sides several times before finding a point where I wasn't touching the sides, then let myself relax. I started to concentrate on my breathing, which sounded incredibly loud after a few minutes. Then I became aware of a loud knocking and started to get upset that I could hear anything. It was supposed to be sound proof, this oven I was currently baking in! I had the ear plugs in too, so I tried to not hear the noise, and after a bit came to the realization that I was hearing my teeth touching together! I experimented and sure enough, when I bit down I heard this loud knocking sound. So, I kept my teeth apart and tried to settle again, and soon found that I felt as though I was slowly revolving around in a 180 degree circle. I knew I wasn't, as I wasn't touching the sides at all, but it felt so real. I started to enjoy the sensation and imagined myself going faster. I cannot testify to seeing any strange images, as some people have reported, and as I have never done a drug in my life and wasn't at this floatation center for that purpose, I cannot say that I was disappointed. I did experience a very calm, zen-like float, but unfortunately I had to interrupt the float twice by getting out and putting more Vaseline over a cut or scrape that started bothering me from the salt. I thought I had been careful to have everything healed up, but this wasn't the case. After the second time getting back into the tank, I was feeling better, and was just starting to get back into it, when some salt water dripped into my eye from all of the up and down that I had been doing. That finished the float for me. So, I got out and showered off – the Epsom salts are crazy about wanting to cling to your skin. I washed down twice to get it all off of me, and then dressed and looked at the time. I thought, what with the interruptions with my float, that I had been inside only 20 minutes or so, but the full hour had passed. Time definitely flew while I was in there. And I felt great! My time in the tank relaxed me in a very profound way. I felt like I was floating on air; I was calm, felt light, the stress was gone, my spirits felt buoyed. I sat and chatted with the lady who was helping me and another woman who floats there regularly. They told me of some of their experiences, and I said that I would absolutely be back. If anyone has any doubts about trying it, I would but them aside and go for it. If you're claustrophobic, even that's not a problem as you can prop the door open. I loved it and am looking forward to seeing what comes of the next session. :)

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