For the past four years I have been secretly blogging. When I took my trip to Barcelona in the summer of 2015 I finally decided to grow some balls and share what I write with other people. Like most of us, I’ve experienced my share of pain and sadness, long periods of grief, depression, failed attempts to cover up pain, and volatile reactions to everything happening around me because I felt that I had no control over my own life.

I started to write again—mostly stream-of-conscious nonsense and angry word vomit. One day I realized that what I wrote wasn’t nonsense, and the anger had started to become clarity. There was one thing I felt certain about; I wanted to help other people, and myself, but I couldn’t figure out how to make it happen. I took a small risk and shared what I published to friends. I started to get some positive feedback (hooray!) and I realized that even if someone didn’t outwardly tell me they liked what I wrote or that it helped them, maybe it would serve a purpose anyhow. I let go of the control I maintained by hiding how I felt, and worrying about what anyone else thought.

This is my way of giving back, in the best way I know how, to try and heal ugly parts of my past, forge a way forward, and bring inspiration and hope to others. My words won’t always be sugar-coated but they come from a place of openness and truth.