And when she comes for me, I hope that I can welcome her

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In third grade, Denver broke his arm. He fell off the monkey bars and and his right forearm turned green and s-shaped. So did his face as he screamed at Amanda and me to get the yard duty. I knew that seeing Denver like that must be just like seeing death. That’s how it felt when I was eight and I saw his arm break in half. Seeing death feels different. I know that now.

I was happy when Grandma died. I don’t like to say it, but I do because I was and telling the truth about death is…

A catalogue of the moments in which a relationship cracks and breaks

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We sat at the end of his parent’s driveway. I had just left another friend’s house and was happy to be in his company. We chatted about the day. We probably kissed and flirted. I don’t remember except for this: He looked up to the stars and said “Ya know, I don’t see why you’re friends with Maggie and Grant anyway.” Which may have been ok if he was defending me against anything — rather than defending himself from his own pangs of insecurity.

We had been long…

And what happens when your brain recognizes that it’s a hostage but can’t do anything about it

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Fitness goals (#goals) are sold to us at rates like never before. And they are sold to us in new ways that cut deeper to our core than the “Be skinny / be worthy of love” messaging of the past.

Fitness is sold to us in service of health — we are sold the active lifestyle that is also the healthy lifestyle.

Fitness is sold to us as a means of self-care, a buzzword that implies a responsibility to yourself — one that should not be co opted by a corporation telling us how exactly to fulfill upon that responsibility.

And the claustrophobic squeeze that tells me I’m about to learn something

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In three weeks, I am moving into my dream home. I’m a millennial though… so let me clarify what that means.

That means I am moving into a modest single-family home — it’s got two bedrooms, one bathroom, original wood floors and a cute retro kitchen (read: small, but it has a gas stove!). It has a washer and dryer in the garage, so I can stop hoarding quarters. It has a small backyard where my dog can sun himself and stalk the birds sitting safely along the top of the fence. My new dream home is in a neighborhood…

My favorite swaps for an increasingly plastic-free life

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Full disclosure: This article contains affiliate links to recommended products, and I will make a commission on items purchased through those links. Happy reading; happy shopping!

Six months ago, I set about a challenge with two of my closest friends. We each resolved to buy nothing new in 2019. And in those six months, I’ve learned a lot. When I started this challenge, it wasn’t about saving money — It was about becoming a more conscious consumer and less of a slave to marketing and the expectations of the rat race and the Jonses.

And it’s absolutely been a salve…

What that means after years of denying myself happiness, joy, laughter, love, excitement and passion

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The first time I fell in love was with a boy who I played with at preschool. His name was Cody and I was four years old. Our mothers were friends and chatted easily while we played with his toy horses in the yard. In this childhood place, I knew that spending time with Cody was fun, that it made me feel safe when he told me he was also scared by an earthquake, and that was all I needed to know. In that childhood place, I hadn’t yet learned to question these things.

When I was 13 years old…

And the major problem of mandating that passion should always be pursued

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The world is obsessed with the well-intentioned career and life advice: find your passion! Do you what you love and you’ll never work a day in your life! Those who are successful are those who are hungry. If you’re not passionate about what you do, why are you doing it? The world is obsessed with the fire and fury of a life passionately lived — especially when it comes to work.

What is passion, anyway?

Passion: “Intense, driving, or overmastering feeling or conviction.” Sometimes the definition will include a note to identify passion as separate from reason. In the context of a career or…

How does a long-term partner fit into that picture?

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Almost four years ago, I divorced a very good, very kind man who loved me very much. I’ve spent these past four years doing what any good millennial does — staring deeply into myself, examining my past and my patterns through in-person therapy, online therapy, meditation, conferences, journalling, books, etc.

That self-reflection — or maybe more accurately self-exhumation — has led to a whole lot of ah-has. In my search to find out what happened to me and my marriage, I mapped my inner landscape, driving down each road gathering insight, confidence and compassion along the way.

Each of these…

Yet here we are. Writing about writing is the only thing I can seem to do sometimes

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Oh hi — I didn’t see you there. Here I am, casually writing yet another navel-gazing piece about the art and the discipline of writing being hard work.

I know, I know — you’ve read this before. I’ve written this before. Hell, you’ve probably read what I’ve written on this topic before. You didn’t ask for more of this. I don’t want to write more of this. I’m gonna do it anyway.

Writing is fucking hard. But you know what? Creating any time-intensive habit is hard. …

The new Alabama law exposes the ugliest side of privilege — what are you going to do with YOURS?

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I am upset. I’m angry. I feel useless and defeated. I feel the incredible weight of both my privilege and my status as a woman in a country whose lawmakers are determined to continually define me as less and less and less. I am so very angry.

And I’m not just angry when things like this happen — I’m angry all the time. I am — many women are — operating at a simmering level of rage on a daily basis…

Alyssa Fechner

I’m a fiercely feminist dog mom fueled by grilled cheese and greek salads. I’m a professional writer in San Diego in search of my personal creative voice.

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