On Monday of this week I did something I never thought I would do.
I walked away from the security of my job - from the career in journalism I had worked very hard to achieve and from the place I had worked for 17 years.
The following day, I turned 40.
If there was ever a time for a big change, I imagine turning 40 was it.
Or at least I hope so.
The thing is, I'm not an overly confident person. Making the move to go full time as a writer both thrills and terrifies me. This week, perhaps, it terrifies me more than thrills me as the reality of not having that monthly salary popping into my bank account each month hits.
But when I think of being my own boss - of spending my days writing, or blogging, or on the Twitters, or helping people tell their own stories I feel giddy.
I feel as if my life's purpose is coming to fruition. That my years as a journalist have been preparing me for this moment.
For this big leap into the unknown. For taking chances.
And I never take chances. I am the most un-chance-taking person I know. I like to live in a little predictable bubble of routine - I always have liked to live in a little predictable bubble of routine.
So what changed?
Perhaps a downturn in my health showed me how precious the good days are.
The day the opportunity arrived for me to move on my career also marked the day my granny, to whom Still You was dedicated, passed away.
I know us Irish wans love our grannies - and I was convinced it was her way of saying: "Don't hold back. You are guaranteed nothing. Do it now, for me."
So I'm doing it for her.
That's not to say leaving the Derry Journal was easy. It was hard - the place has been my home from home for 17 years. I have seen a lot of change, told a lot of stories. met a lot of people. I can never be anything less than grateful for the experiences working there gave me.
But habit and security are no reason to stay somewhere that no longer sets your soul on fire.
And thankfully (and I do know I am very lucky) we as a family were in a position to allow me to take this chance.
This is a whole new chapter - after eight books.
It will be interesting to see what comes next.
But so many people have asked me to keep 'Skirting the Issue' going - so I intend to do that. I will post a new blog post - a new opinion piece - here every Wednesday. I hope you come on this journey with me.
Why Skirting the Issue?
For 14 years I wrote my Skirting the Issue column for the Derry Journal each Friday - I may have moved on, but I still have opinions!