“That was a recurring theme: whether the surface of people can ever harmonize with what’s inside their minds.”During her winter break, she spent a week in Manhattan preparing for two débutante balls, at the Waldorf-Astoria and at the Plaza Hotel.
She went to a bridal store and chose a floor-length strapless white gown and white satin gloves that reached above her elbows.
Because the drug temporarily blocks the action at the body’s glutamate receptor NMDA, which is the body’s main excitatory chemical messenger, it puts you into a trancelike state that makes you feel relaxed and pleasantly disconnected from reality.
She snapped at her mother, locked herself in her room, and talked about wanting to die.
She had friends at school who cut themselves with razors, and she was intrigued by what seemed to be an act of defiance. “The pain felt so real and raw and mine,” she said.
According to a 2016 study of the drug, ketamine was introduced into a clinical setting as an anesthetic in the 1960s.
But if you’ve ever gone to a party and been offered Special K, you’ve come in contact with ketamine.
While ketamine has a bad — or great, depending on who you ask — reputation as a street drug, it turns out the anesthetic can do more than slide you into a dissociative state in a crowded nightclub: It can also help your mental health. (The active ingredient in the spray is esketamine, which is the chemical cousin of ketamine.) “There has been a long-standing need for additional effective treatments for treatment-resistant depression, a serious and life-threatening condition,” Dr.
Food and Drug Administration announced that it had approved Spravato, a ketamine-like nasal spray for severe depression that experts are heralding as the first novel antidepressant to hit the market since Prozac did 35 years ago.Her sister Nina said that, at the Waldorf ball, “I remember thinking Laura was so much a part of it.”Yet, in pictures before the second ball, Laura is slightly hunched over, as if trying to minimize the breadth of her muscular shoulders.She wears a thin pearl necklace, and her blond hair is coiled in an ornate bun. That night, before walking onstage, Laura did cocaine and chugged champagne.She hid the pills in a jewelry box in her closet and then washed them down the sink.She hoped that she might discover a more authentic version of herself at Harvard, where she arrived as a freshman in 2001. Sometimes she fashioned herself as a “fun, down-to-earth girl” who drank until early morning with boys who considered her chill.Her roommate, Bree Tse, said, “Laura just blew me away—she was this golden girl, so vibrant and attentive and in tune with people.” On her first day at Harvard, Laura wandered the campus and thought, This is everything I’ve been working for. Other times, she was a postmodern nihilist, deconstructing the arbitrariness of language.