I Went In A Sensory Deprivation Tank... / by Ricardo Marquez

I really suck at this blogging thing. Seriously, for a guy whose Twitter handle is "iBlogBetter", I am the god damn worst. I kept telling myself I'm gonna do more writing then I just end up watching Netflix or playing video games and boom, life passes me by.

ANYWAY, hey guys. Been a while. Life has been a little crazy lately. So, when life gets crazy, people tend to do crazy things. Like...go in a sensory deprivation tank. Which was cool...and weird...but mainly cool.

Before I go on, I should probably explain what it is for those who have no idea. A sensory deprivation tank (or float tank because that sounds less insane) is a tub full of epsom salt in an enclosed room/tank where no light/sound comes in. So you're basically in a room full of darkness. SOUNDS GREAT, RIGHT?! The whole point of the experience is to take away all the business of life and have you relaxed with just yourself and your thoughts. It's really magical. 

I decided to go to Float Clinic in Torrance thanks to a suggestion by someone who I highly respect on issues of relaxation and just doing cool shit. Before I made the decision to go, I hit up my friend Mina to see if she was up for experiencing the whole thing with me and she was down. WHAT A GREAT FRIEND. YOU NEED THOSE. I booked us an appointment at 10am and there we were on a Saturday morning waiting to experience the upside down. (THAT'S A STRANGER THINGS REFERENCE, YOU GUYS).

At 9:55 (place opened at 10), we walked into what was pretty much the equivalent of a spa lobby. Lot of blue, nice smells and warm vibes. After us joking about what was about to go down, a very sweet woman walked out of the hallway door and greeted us. I feel horrible for not grabbing her name but she made it seem like we knew each other for years. After the initial meet, she sat us down and explained how to float since it was our first time and answered any questions we had. I was a little nervous about some blisters on my hand getting some salt water in it and she pretty much said "IT IS GOING TO STING SO RUN OUT". Once we were done with the questions, she took us to our individual rooms to get us ready for the journey we were about to embark on. Then things got weird.

As I closed the door behind me, I was standing in a pretty nice room made out of some stone tiles. Pretty nice set up. I began to shower up and proceeded to open the door to the tank and hoped to god my body weight would let me float. Spoiler Alert: I was fine. 

So I walk in this pretty nicely heated tank and shut the door. It was pitch black and I was already freaking out about which direction I was laying down. For the first part of the float, I kept trying to get my body adjusted to the tank. I remembered her saying to just let my body relax and let the water keep me afloat so, I let my muscles go and had the water almost to the level of my eyes. It was pretty relaxing but somewhat terrifying. I just sat there enjoying the float with a bunch of rapid fire thoughts running through my head.

"I need to get groceries" "Did I have any e-mails from my boss?" "How many pairs of underwear do I have lef?t"

I tried to get rid of the thoughts by focusing on some breathing exercises and welp, it actually did the trick. This is when things got really really weird. 

Once I felt like my body was in 100% relaxation mode, I tried to move my legs. I couldn't feel them. Like, I literally could not feel my legs. I tried to move them and nothing. I did the whole Kill Bill "Wiggle your big toe thing" and NOTHING. I then tried to touch my arms and for some reason, I couldn't fucking touch them. It was such a strange feeling to know that your hands should be touching but no matter how hard you try, you would never touch. Then I was like "OH SHIT ARE MY EYES OPEN OR CLOSE?! I CAN'T TELL". I had to blink to make sure I was still there. As soon as I did that, some weird euphoria kicked in and I was just insanely happy. I felt at peace. I felt like all the stress and anxiety I had from the past couple weeks was gone. Then...SHIT GOT EVEN WEIRDER.

Now, this is gonna sound strange but this seriously happened. As I'm sitting there just smiling about life, I notice some darker waves kind of floating in front of me. Those waves started to get some color. Eventually they turned green and I was tripping out. I just floated there looking at these green waves then BOOM, THEY TURNED INTO THE NORTHERN LIGHTS! I WAS TRIPPING BALLSSSSSSSSSSSS. Right in front of me. Right above my head. THE NORTHERN FUCKING LIGHTS. That euphoria I had tripled in feeling and I was in the god damn zone. Eventually I started thinking about what made me happy in life. What people who are currently in my life make me the happiest. THEN A CHILDHOOD MEMORY OF ME GETTING A GAMEBOY FOR CHRISTMAS JUST APPEARED OUTTA NOWHERE! I was on cloud god damn nine. It was fantastic

By now, I started to hear some shit. I remember the staff member informing me that music would play to let us know that we should come out and shower. I started hearing some Bon Iver-esque music and just knew that it wasn't it. I could then hear some conversations behind my head but couldn't make out what they were talking about. It was a trippy feeling. Then, silence. The northern lights were gone. The happy memories went away. I was just in darkness. I should also mention, I had never felt happier in my life.

Once some cliche spa chime music started playing, I knew my time was up. I climbed out of the tank like I was reborn and proceeded to wash off all the salt from my body. As I walked out, I told they lady what I saw and just feel rejuvenated. I was ready to get the show going. 

So there ya have it. I did a float tank and it was magical. Mina didn't have the same experience I did but she said her body felt relaxed. I don't expect anyone reading this to feel like they're gonna see some weird stuff but hopefully you do. WHAT A TIME TO BE ALIVE.