I started my first diary, Blue of Noon on Open Diary in 2001. I stumbled upon Open Diary whilst researching social phobia online. I discovered someone’s online diary detailing their struggles with anxiety and social phobia and thought, I could do better than that! I started to write, thinking that I would probably only write one or two entries and give up after a while.
A few months later, September 11, 2001 happened and I remember being struck that I could read the opinions of people from around the world in this community, and that despite how different our cultural contexts might have been, we were very similar in some respects. I was fascinated by other people’s stories and I found solace in my own writing. I wrote through the night and would work by day. I found that with little sleep I lapsed from deep dark depression into a manic high of invincibility.
I quit my job and bought an around the world ticket to travel alone and meet up with people I had met through Open Diary for one whole year of my life. It was a life changing experience. It was an identity changing experience. It was a set of experiences that has profoundly impacted me for the remainder of my life.
When I returned home to Australia, I felt lost, back in the small pond. Five years later, my writing here began to wane as events in my life became too painful to share in words. Synchronistically, Open Diary was shut down and I felt that all of my connections to my fellow diarists had been lost.
Nearly ten years later, when the call to write retuned, I searched for Open Diary and found that the Diary Master was testing a new platform. I felt a secret inner glee, knowing that my writing had the power to encourage me to take risks, try new things, be authentic and connect.
I am hoping that some of my old faves find their way back to me and that I meet other wonderful connections through this new window.