I’ve suffered from social anxiety and depression since I was about 12 years old. They started off being somewhat manageable, and then throughout my twenties they evolved into being downright crippling.

Recently, I turned 30 and I experienced a lot of regrets about how completely I’ve allowed my anxiety to control my life. I allowed it to cut me off from people and experiences. I have very few adventures of any kind to look back on, and that hurts. I want my next 30 years on earth to be rich and full. I want memories I can hold on to when times are rough. I want more.

Among my greatest regrets is how I let my social anxiety scare me away from updating this blog. In 2013, when this blog was launched as Red Tulips and Yellow Wallpaper, I was Freshly Pressed and then featured in a weekly WordPress roundup with my second entry. The deluge of several hundred comments and all the attention overwhelmed me, and I reacted the way I always have to anxiety: I ran away.

I’m not running anymore.

My hope for this blog is that writing about my anxiety and depression can start me on the path towards healing, and perhaps even encourage others to get out there and have some adventures as well. The original two essays that launched this site will always be dear to me, but I don’t want the emphasis here to always be on pain and fear. I want to focus on getting out of the house and the shadows and finally experiencing adventures. There will be painful posts full of hurt, because anxiety and depression are lifelong battles in many cases. But there will be posts full of hope and adventure, for the very same reason: my anxiety likely won’t go away, so I can’t keep waiting for it to retreat before I get out there and experience life to its fullest.

The photo in the header was adapted by me for this blog under a Creative Commons CC0 1.0 Universal licence.