Esmy Jimenez, Next Gen fellow, sits with doula Erika Davis in her home in Tacoma, WA.

Journalism is inherently painful.

We write about the crime in our neighborhoods, wildfires burning across the state, the family who lost a child. And while not all stories are like this, some of the most powerful ones are about loss.

But this week, I learned that just because the story is hard, the journalism process doesn’t have to be. You can have a team that believes you when you say something is important. You can have someone who trusts your editorial judgment — you the reporter, you the person.

Erika Davis, the woman I profiled, says it best: “You don’t have to explain it. It allows us to just get to work.”

This experience was overwhelming in the best way possible. And the most fascinating, albeit difficult, part was stepping into my own power.

I’m a good reporter. My newsroom knows that.

And now, I know that too.