archives, you & me

The Relief in Admitting Our Truth to Ourselves.


Loss, rejection, and failure. These reapers, these minions of death, we know their innate design is to come for us, and we fear being caught unaware and defenseless.

Sometimes, despite our best efforts and intentions, the people or things we come to depend on are stripped from us, leaving us with a nakedness that triggers a scramble for coverage. We want to stand proud and insist we don’t care.

We run to the next thing or person to immediately plug the potential leak that could flood our beings with a weight of grief so strong it threatens to break down our most strategically built dams. The temptation to avoid sitting with such prickly feelings becomes a driving force funneling our energy source into resisting getting swept up from our path and into something we cannot control.

These tornadoes land and all we see is the wreckage. The ability to find rest in the eye of the storm, or to see that the whirling projection still carries us forward, is easy to dismiss when scars from past debris still highlights our thin skin. We seek shelter from the storm at the first crack of thunder, without pausing to consider how it might play out if we stay in the game and push through.

There are times to run, reasons to hide, and places to safely wait. Yet, there is a diamond buried in this rough terrain that promises to yield a reflection of our highest value if we can let it have an opportunity to do its work.

The sharpest tool I know of to combat fear is truth. Even amid impenetrable darkness, the spark of confession can be enough to ignite the torch we clutch with blistered hands, allowing us to maintain the path toward the lighted end of a seemingly endless tunnel. The relief in admitting our truth to ourselves and sharing it with others keeps us grounded long enough to catch our own reflection along the way.

We look at ourselves with full recognition, checking in with the person we are taking through to the other side, so that as we introduce ourselves as having come through, we are known in the same truth we hold ourselves to.

Any form of death is coldest and most cruel in its finality. Yet, death is as natural as life, and the fact that they are often partners means they know how to work together, and that embracing them as one offers freedom from fearing them.

Letting go of being let go often feels like giving in. Our sense of control reacts as if we are being coerced to take the bait and die as well. We flail, shouting things about the timing being all wrong, and feeling defeated because the fact is we never intended to be ready.

Rarely are we inclined to invite loss, rejection, or failure in even if it sends a clear message of its coming. Most of us see them as the most vile and greedy form of collectors because when they take something from us, it always feels like the space around widens its mouth, demanding other parts of our lives to satisfy its appetite. Despite how strongly we decline, we are all accustomed to their visits.

We have all lost people and things, and we have been rejected, and we have failed, sometimes over and over, and in the same space. However, as light and life remain just as powerful and constant, we can ingest truth, allowing it to cover us as the umbrella in our downpour, filling us with gulps of air between crashing waves, remaining as the immovable structure we stand in through the quakes.

Our truth is that we are not lost, our fullness is acceptable, and failure is followed by the whisper, “Go again.” We see the storms coming, swirling, taking, and the first thing they warn is, “I am wild,” only waiting for us to call back, “So am I.”


Erica Bauman currently resides in Cincinnati, OH and has recently gone back to school for her Bachelor of Science in Psychology. Her favorite places to visit in the city are Washington Park, OTR, Findlay Market, Smale Park and the Roebling Bridge. She revels in the opportunity to catch a game or live performance, whether that be an FCC game or a Riverbend concert. She is a proud student, volunteer, and supporter of the city’s own Improv Cincinnati. She believes deeply in the beauty and stories found in the people and places she comes to know, that music makes everything better, and that laughter is truly the best medicine. She hopes to impact everyone that crosses her path in that they feel they are somehow better for having done so. She has been published with,, and Holl and Lane Magazine. You could contact Erica via Instagram.


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