I often get the questions, "Why do you want to share so many personal things? Don't you want your privacy?" or, "Do you really want strangers knowing this about you? Why are you so open?" My answer is this. As Carl Rogers once said, "What is most personal, is most universal." This means, that you are not as alone as you think you are. We are all human; we hurt, we cry, we get confused, we make mistakes, and then most of us put on our happy face mask and go out into the world pretending we are perfectly fine. Unfortunately, because of this, most of us end up feeling alone, misunderstood, and overwhelmed with our own bottled up baggage. We end up robbing ourselves of the chance to accept and explore much of what's going on behind the curtains. We end up missing out opportunities to connect with people that can validate our experiences and rationalize our feelings. The reason I choose to share is because in the authenticity of brave women, authors and bloggers, I found acceptance, company, and hope through my challenges. The shame began to melt and in it's place is blossoming strength and empowerment. The more transparent we get in sharing our stories and experiences, the more we will find similarities and support amongst each other. Not to mention, it's exhausting pretending to be something your not. Being authentic requires little effort.