Sunday, October 1, 2017

Art Therapy

I for one love art therapy. It is a great way to express how you're feeling. Especially for those who have a hard time verbalizing. I go to Art Therapy every Wednesday evening. It is a great way to be mindful and to also connect with others who are in Recovery and love art.

There are so many things you can do with art therapy. Whether it be music, dance, acting, drawing, painting etc. It's a non-verbal form of therapy which helps with a lot of people with autism, Alzheimer, schizophrenia, and a range of people with mental health or brain disorders.

Research shows that art therapy can reduce anxiety, stress, and help with depression. Cancer patients and others struggling with medical issues benefit from art therapy as well. It gives the mind something to focus on. A lot of times we are talking or thinking but when you get those expressions down on paper it can reduce the stress of having to talk about it. Some people have a hard time verbalizing and art therapy can be helpful in this aspect.

Here are some Art Therapy Activities.

Friday, June 9, 2017

Why I Just Came Out as Aromatic/Asexual

                                                                    Asexual Flag

Since this month is pride month I thought I'd come out as an Aromantic Asexual. If you don't know what Asexuality of Aromanticsim is: it is someone who does not feel sexual or romantic attraction to another person. Now I know I've always been partly asexual. I even thought kissing was repulsive, because come on lets be honest sticking each others dirty tongues inside ones mouth is kind of gross. I never saw sex as a way to connect to someone just as a kind of thing neanderthals did in order to reproduce and survive. I also don't see relationships as this amazing thing. I love my family and my friends but I wouldn't go out of my way to be in a relationship or "Die" if I'm without a certain person emotionally speaking.

                                                      The Newest Aromantic Flag

 Relationships have always been foreign to me. I would date someone get bored and break up with them after a couple weeks. I would actually feel so relieved when I broke up with someone, instead of devastated. I remember breaking up with my boyfriend and actually feeling extremely happy that I didn't have to deal with another person in a personal manner.

 I was very much into relationships and sex from the time I was 13 to 17 and a little bit at 18 and 19 but the older I got the more I started seeing that relationships really can get in the way of things, and for me (not all) can make things worse. At first I thought it was because I was gay. I realized I wasn't sexually attracted to men then little did I know I was attracted to women either. I like being friends and having a platonic relationship but other than that I just see you as a friend.

From what I know your sexuality and gender preference can change at anytime. I absolutely do not think being gay is a choice. I just think people grow and change and so do the ways they see other people. A lot of people come out later in life. I use to be quite a sexual person but I have changed completely and love being by myself. I never get bored by myself. Some Asexuals are asexual their whole life and that is okay. I know a lot of people who have always been that way and some people that grow out of relationships. As a society we no longer need sex to survive.

Things to not say to an Asexual:
"Oh you just haven't found the right person yet."
"You just need to have sex then you'll start to like it."
"Do you at least masturbate?"

I really think LGBT and Aro/Ace and many others are the future of sexuality. As a society we are becoming a little more accepting of different genders and sexual orientation. I honestly blame evolution and it's way of transforming into a new type of way to look at how we view sex or sexual preference. Sorry crazy religious people but gay/bi/trans/asexual are the future of our society.

Visit: For more information and to chat with people in the Asexual community.

Thursday, June 1, 2017

Family Trip to Poudre Canyon

                                                          At Hewlett Gulch Trail
                                  Michael Shay Blog:

I went for a Family Adventure Hike for Memorial Day Weekend at Poudre Canyon. It is a great hiking, picnic, fishing, camping etc place in Fort Collins. Our hiking trip was at Hewlett Gulch Trail. A great, close place with a wide open trail and a great view of the mountains.

                                              River Rafting at Poudre Canyon River.

We stopped to have a nice picnic at Picnic Rock River where we enjoyed the many people River Rafting. We drove up to Ansel Watrous but it's closed for the summer.

                                           I snapped this great pic up to Ansel Watrous Trail

Butterflies were soaring that beautiful day. It might of been all the nats around the creeks and river. I'm sure Poudre Canyon has great wildlife but I didn't see much of it up there. (I'll make another blog about that.)

I love this sign because it is just so Colorado.
Us Coloradans love our nature and beer.

                                                          Cache La Poudre River

The Cache La Poudre River or Poudre River runs eastward through the mountains, through The Roosevelt National Forrest in Poudre Canyon. It's a long stretch and it's a popular sight for fishing, rafting, tubing etc.
                                                         The Hewlett Gulch Trail

The Hewlett Gulch Trail is a 7.6 mile back trail. It's located near Bellvue Colorado. It's a back trail that allows dogs as long as they are kept on a leash. A lot of people take this trail. I met some pretty awesome dog walkers on my way through the trail. It's got wide open spaces and a great view.

More Family Fun Pics:

Poudre Canyon is a popular sight but still amazing none the less. I would suggest it highly if you live in the Larimer County Area.

I hope you had a fun Memorial Day!

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Why Colorado is the best.

                                                 Why you should move to Colorado.

Now I've been all over from Chicago to Florida, and California and I have never been in a better state than good ol' Colorado. It's green and smells amazing. There's so much to do whether you like rock climbing, hiking, swimming, bar hopping it's got it all. Oh and of course the greenie good stuff. Colorado has amazing weed and the money goes towards things like fixing pot holes, paying for students college, and even for the police force. Take that coppers! Most people move here for the weed but there are so many more things Colorado is great for.

City life of Colorado:
Denver is the Mile High City! It's not as big as Chicago or New York. I actually remember coming back from Chicago and seeing Downtown Denver and laughing at the difference but it is a working progress and they have so many great things downtown. From bars, clubs, concerts, street performances it's great. They hold Gay Pride and a lot of marches like the Women's and Science March in downtown Denver mostly they are held at Civic Center Park.

                                                      DENVER ART MUSEUM

We have the Denver Art Museum which is the largest Art Museum between the West Coast and Chicago. There are a lot of things you can do at the museum whether you're a college student or have a family. They have a kids section which I love because we need kids to get interested in the arts!
 I went to the Star Wars exhibit a couple weeks ago and it changed my life. They always have great exhibits and occasionally offer free days to roam the place. I would go if I were you.


4/20 is the shit in Colorado from marches to show your support to just nice places where you can hang out, support your views on marijuana, and smoke with some strangers. You get great deals on munchies and fun psychedelic events. I would definitely travel from far away just for this rally. They had Wiz Khalifa and Lil Wayne in 2016. Oh and did I mention it's FREE at Civic Center Park?! What better way to celebrate 4/20 than eat, enjoy music, and smoke with some friends on 4/20 in Denver. So make your way down for the free rally April, 20th 2018 at Civic Center Park and have the highest of times.


Colorado has given birth to so many great musicians such as: The Fray, The Lumineers, The Flobots and I could go on. Basically music is the best in Colorado. With its affordable shows and great venues. It is the perfect place for that funky good stuff, The most popular of venues is Red Rocks 10 miles west of Denver. It is an outside venue with open grassy areas and a great amphitheater. There's constantly shows and a lot of great popular or underground music is played here. I would definitely visit this if I were you.There are also a lot of great music festivals in downtown Denver with affordable hostels near by. In good old Fort Collins there is a lot of music as well. Hodi's Half Note and The Aggie Theater are affordable ways to see some great shows with cheap tickets and a great place to see music. If you're in Fort Collins I would highly suggest going. Enjoy the Colorado music.

The outdoors in Colorado are just simply elegant. Rocky Mountain National Park is the most popular of outdoor sites. It's got great Wildlife, nature hiking, rock climbing, camping, skiing, cliff diving, swimming, fishing you name it, I would highly suggest going to a Colorado Information Center and getting a couple maps and try finding the best nature adventure for you.No matter what city you're in there will be a camp site near by so load up that S.U.V. and get started. The coolest thing about Colorado nature is it's everywhere you can see the mountain just driving to work. Mother Nature has blessed Colorado.

                                           COLORADO WOLF AND WILDLIFE CENTER
The best thing about the Midwest (in my opinion) is the wildlife. In Divide Colorado they have the Colorado Wolf and Wildlife Center. Which is a great way to educate people on Colorado Wildlife and how Wolves especially help our ecosystem and tourism for people coming all over to see these beautiful creatures. There are different tours you can do and you can even interact with the wolves themselves! You get up to 15 photos taken of you and the wolf that you can show off to friends. What these people do for these animals really inspires me and makes me want to go there even more! It really is an amazing place get your tickets today at the link below.



YES!!! We stole Voodoo doughnuts from Portland! It really is a great place. They have menu options like Voodoo Doll Doughnut, Penis Doughnut (with any name you want written on it) and doughnuts with bubble gum, M&M's, pentagram doughnuts to share with your fellow priest. The doughnuts are delicious and I would highly recommend going there.

Colorado really is an amazing place. I've lived all over and it truly is the friendliest, most open minded, eventful, adventurous, green place there is. Enjoy Colorado!

Monday, May 15, 2017

The Old Book Project.

A fun thing I found out in Recovery and did in my art class is we received old books and drew and wrote in the fraying pages. I've always loved the idea of art being a way of healing. It's a way to express what you're truly thinking without saying the words. This is not only a good way to get the attention of authors but to also create and express something that is your own. Words and art tell the truth.
Here are some examples:

                                            Here is an example of what I did. You can take the title
                                          and make it into whatever you want but isn't that why
                                          books are the best?

                                                       Here's kind of an example of a way you can make
                                                       a poem drawing as well.

You can either make poems, draw, make a story or paint. It is a great use of an old decaying book. I love old books and love even more making them into a continuing piece of art. You've probably already heard of it but if you haven't it's a great project for your students, art patients, etc.

Here's a link of some great book artwork that hopefully will inspire you:

It's easy and fun to do just grab a sharpie and make yourself a piece of art with a piece of art!

Sunday, May 14, 2017

My experience with Electric Convulsive Therapy.

When I was 23 I had Electric Convulsive Therapy or (ECT) and it helped tremendously. I am now 100 plus days free of self-harm and have been out of the hospital and living life like a healthy person should for the past couple of months. Needless to say I am very happy with my life.
Now I know when you hear ECT you think of the old 1930's treatments where they pretty much would try to shock the normal into you, but that is not how it is like today.
They wouldn't still be offering it if it didn't work or if it was not an effective treatment for certain types of mental illness.

I was in the hospital at the time so a ECT nurse came to see me and asked me a series of questions. She asked me how many medications I had been on and I listed a good 20 (that I could remember). She also asked me how many hospitals and treatment centers I had been to. At the end she literally said "Well I think ECT would be perfect for you." I was pretty excited.

First what they do (depending on where you're at) is have you wait in a waiting room then they call you in to give you an I.V. (I believe they put saline in it at first.) Then you wait to get a bed, after a while you get wheeled into the ECT procedure room and proceed from there. Now my doctor was awesome, for my first ECT Treatment he let me pick a song that will calm you down the most (since I hadn't gotten anesthesia since I was 5) this was very helpful because I was scared. I picked Vance Joy's Riptide because that song was helping me through my depression and honestly was just an upbeat song. They gave me oxygen and then put anesthesia and pain medicine in my I.V. it took two second for me to pass out.

I woke up and they fed me and gave me a drink because you can't eat or drink a couple hours before the ECT. I felt fine just a little tired. There are very few side effects of ECT they include:
Memory Loss
Tiredness (usually due to the anesthesia)
Jaw Pain
Muscle Ache

The only symptoms I had were the slight headache and memory loss. I honestly till this day cannot tell you most of what I remember from that time getting surgery.

The side effects seem like a lot but if you compare it to side effects of lithium and Prozac it is quite tame.

Basically what ECT does is help produce more serotonin in your brain, just like what Prozac or Zoloft does but quicker and in a shorter period of time. Depending on the place you go you will have a series of 9 to 15 treatments to start out with. Usually these treatments are done two to three times a week then once a week, once a month until you're feeling better. I heard great news from the staff saying they've seen catatonic patients start to talk after ECT treatment so I was pretty hopeful and obviously it worked out for me. I actually started showing signs of improvement after 1 to 2 treatments which they said was rare. It was a great experience I was scared and first but it was worth it.

Here is a link from TED about a man who went through and is describing how ECT works:

How ECT works:
They apply small shocks to the brain inducing a seizure. They start off with a small shock then work their way up until you respond with a small seizure. The seizure basically forces more serotonin in the brain making it so patients who don't react well to medicine will have a better time with ECT.

Here's a great article with a lot more information:

From what I understand this came about when doctors noticed patients who were having seizures recovered more quickly from depression. They wanted to find a way to induce seizures so that patients could recover quicker. Now there was some misuse in the past but now it is used safely and effectively with a qualified doctor.

Electric Convulsive Therapy has changed my life and I'd like to stop the stigma around it so other people with severe depression can pursue it without hesitation. My friend is doing ECT now and she is already feeling better. I also know a lot of people who's lives have been changed because of this simple procedure.

(SIDE NOTE: The information I have given is from internet and self research not all of it may be correct please ask your doctor about Electric Convulsive Therapy and how it can help you)

For more information ask your doctor or psychiatrist and see if you can get the help you need :)

EDM and Vodka.

On May 4th 2017 I went to the Aggie Theatre in Fort Collins Colorado. 
I saw a great EDM show featuring:
Unlimited Aspect w/ Ryan Viser, Miss Jaedha, Krushendo.

It was an amazing show. The dance floor vibrated with the stampede of electric music it was a great show.

                                          Above is some people spinning poy.
                                          They had a dancer who was very sweet and talented.
                                          Here's Miss Jaedha (love those EDM ladies!)
                                            Here's Unlimited Aspect, he was amazing.
                                          Here's some nice ladies I saw spinning, they were
                                         very sweet and let me take a picture.
All in all the show was good. I met some amazing people and got to see some very talented EDM artists. If you live in the Fort Collins and would like a good venue to see music for cheap here is a link. Also they have a bar which I enjoyed very much. They also have cool local artists you can buy from and clothing available to buy during shows.