Yesterday, December 6, my book Killing It was born—officially published! And, well, wow.

It’s cliché to say it’s been a journey, but there’s no better word for it. Though I researched all the proper publishing steps before embarking on writing, I learned that publishing a book is about so much more than getting words down on a page and sending them to an editor. It means thinking deeply about your experiences to find the insights that you believe are worth sharing, those pieces of wisdom you hope can help others. I learned that writing a book will test your belief in what you have to say; you have to trust that it will resonate with readers. Writing a book is about determining that you are ready—really and truly ready—to mine your defining moments, even the hard ones, and make sense out of them. Writing a book means you’re ready to share your story.

I always knew that my struggle with an eating disorder was a critical chapter that I’d need to write about, and that made me nervous. I also knew that the story of Blue Sky—a company my husband and I so deeply believed in, a belief that took us to the brink of financial disaster—would need to be in the book. The idea of writing about Blue Sky, too, made me nervous. While my closest friends and family knew about these experiences, many other people in my life didn’t—to say nothing of the people in the general public who I’d be sharing them with.

But I was ready. I had to be, or it never would have worked. What I found was that the process of examining these experiences and finding meaning in them that could help others was healing. It was also invaluable and validating to interview other entrepreneurs for the book, and to see patterns and similarities in our stories. I saw firsthand how eager entrepreneurs were to talk and take a deep introspective dive themselves. Many said things like, “You know, I haven’t thought much about that before,” and interviews that were slated for half an hour went much longer. There were entrepreneurs I told about the book who revealed that they, too, had struggled with eating disorders and other demons they’d previously been too ashamed to talk about. The book gave me the opportunity to connect with kindred spirits who truly understood where I’d been, and vice versa.

With the publication of Killing It, now that conversation gets to grow. And that—much more than having my name on a book—is what feels most notable about this birthday. I hope that my story will inspire others to share their own experiences, especially the hard stuff. Being an entrepreneur can feel lonely, but it doesn’t have to. So, let’s talk.