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Essie's Hour of Love

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EP 49 | Surviving the Perfect Storm w/Jonathon Aslay

They say nothing can prepare you for parenthood, or the loss of your child. But, when Jonathon Aslay’s biggest fear came true, he believes he was. Tune in to hear a father’s journey of learning how to grieve through love. Check out Jonathon's new book "What The Heck is Self Love Anyway" at


EP 48 | The Weight of My Identity w/Jess Fuchs

After getting asked to perform at a plus-size themed comedy show, Jess Fuchs asked herself “Am I a plus-size comedian? Or, am I a comedian that happens to be plus-size?” Listen in as Ess & Jess consider all the ways being “larger” helped shape who they are today. Check out Jess’s own podcast Expert Schmexpert or on her instagram @jessfuchs


EP 47 | Kids of Divorce w/Jesse Taylor

We’re kids of divorce…are you too? Have you ever wondered if celebrating two Christmases, living out of a suitcase, and having “strangers” sleep in your parents' bed shaped you? We sat down with our dear friend Jesse Taylor to discuss if we’re f*cked up being kids of divorce, or stronger because of it...‍


EP 46 | Birth of a Birth Mother w/Chelsea Kravitz

Chelsea Kravitz is a Birth Mother. A title often erased from the story of adoption, and one that may even imply her “mothering” and love for her daughter ended. But, we’ve often been told there’s nothing stronger than a mother’s love. So at 21 yrs old, Chelsea found herself clenching her eyes shut as she gave birth to a beautiful baby girl, because if she opened them, she’d never be able to give her away. An act so powerful it would send her on a journey to rebuild her life. Tune in to hear...


EP 45 | I’d Like to Hold Your Hand w/Jimmie L

This story starts with a date a thousand miles in the making. The truth is you never know when love will happen, where it’ll take you, or how it’ll hold you together. But, isn’t the journey worth the leap of faith? Es and Grace sit down with the podcast’s very own Jimmie L who says “you learn what you really mean to someone when you’re sick”. Tune in now.


EP 44 | Not That Kind Of Love w/Jonah Lehrer

Before Jonah sat down and wrote A Book About Love he thought he’d never write again. He was at rock bottom. He’d lost his dream job, made some unforgettable mistakes and to top it all off, his 2 yr old daughter wouldn’t let him push her on the swing. And yet, he was in the midst of experiencing a type of love that we don’t normally see in the movies. The type of love that has changed the course of this podcast forever. Tune in to hear All About Love.


EP 43 | Proving People Right w/Strauss Mann

“10 yrs ago, I met a kid called Strauss. He was little, wise and a complete rascal. One day, he told me he wanted to become a pro hockey player. I replied with a cheap cliche line, something like, 'if you work hard anything can happen'. He wasn't impressed. He said that I had no idea what that would take. I didn’t. But he did. Now he’s 21, a sophomore at University of Michigan playing D1 hockey and inspiring me everyday. Tune in to this week's episode to hear what it takes.” - Essie.


EP 42 | Defining the Undefinable w/Mallory Jones

Sometimes you’re labeled different from the get-go because of who you love, who your parents are, or how you look. But what happens when you’re all of the above? This week Mallory Jones takes us on a journey of perseverance that began before she was even born, to today. And how sometimes, you just can’t give a crap.


EP 41 | A Self Declared Playboy w/Leo Nguyen

He may approach dating casually, but when things go wrong in the bedroom maybe it’s a sign for something greater in life. In this episode Es and Grace sit down with former guest Leo to casually chat about casual sex, leaving us wondering “how comfortable are we with this?” In retrospect, we can all say we’d do things differently...and Leo is calling himself out on his own actions. Maybe he’ll change, maybe he won’t. But acknowledging the issue is half the battle.


EP 40 | Now, I'm Listening w/ Yahdon Israel

It’ll be years until he learns how to truly hear people, especially women...but mostly himself. Raised as a boy that should be seen and not heard, Yahdon did a lot of listening. And now, he sits down with us to discuss how he’s used his writing to better understand the terms for which society set for him vs the ones he’s trying to set for himself. And now, it’s our turn to truly listen to him...and maybe help us better understand ourselves. Yahdon Israel is a writer, college professor and...


EP 39 | A Dash Of Hope W/ Veronica

It’s 2am. Lower East Side. Dive Bar. And our guest, Veronica, just can’t keep her eyes off this guy. He’s handsome, wearing a peacoat and holding her gaze. But he never comes over and she leaves without saying a word. And yet, he texts her 2 hours later. How could this be? Tune in to hear one of the greatest “meet cutes” of all time and the realities of a successful relationship….basically, what happens when the Romantic Comedy ends. ***LAST EPISODE OF THE SEASON***


EP 38 | I Had an Abortion. w/ Lindsay

The truth is the “Abortion Conversation” is one often removed from the dinner table. But, why are we so afraid to talk about it? For too long, talking about abortions has been like reversing an oversized truck. Done with CAUTION. Not today. Tune in to hear Lindsay’s unfiltered real-life abortion experience. From knowing her and her partner weren’t ready to be parents, who she reached out to for support, how they reacted, and all the mixed feelings that followed.


EP 37 | Sounds Of Love w/ Joanna Fang

Meet Joanna. Who was once called Jonathan. She’s a kickass sound editor, Emmy Award winning to be exact, a philosopher of love & sound, and perpetually finding herself figuring out if she’s actually on a date...or just “hanging out”. Tune into the latest episode and hear about her experiences working for Master of None, her first date with a heterosexual man, and most importantly, how sometimes we’re looking for our Mozart while other times our Justin Bieber.


EP 36 | No Longer A Mormon w/Cole N.

Cole was the good Mormon kid. He went on his Mission to Korea, attended a Mormon college and married a lovely Mormon woman. All the while never quite knowing what he truly believed in...and who he really was. And then, he and his wife decided to leave the faith, got drunk together for the first time, and decided to date other people. Maybe he still hasn’t found all the answers, but he’s finally free to find out.


EP 35 | If It Ain't Foreign It's Boring w/Rex W.

Rex is first generation American Nigerian, currently 23 yrs old, living it up in NYC, and madly in love with a Singaporean girl of Chinese decent. He grew up with parents who’s biggest fear was that he would become a statistic and biggest hope, that one day, he will marry a nice Nigerian woman. Things are complicated. But as Rex puts it…”pressure makes diamonds, right?”


EP 34 | Sex, Serendipity & My Truth w/Heloise Wilson

It’s serendipity! Imagine you’re on a romantic trip to Berlin with your lover and you find yourself reliving the same moment you shared on the same street corner 2 years ago...with your previous lover. This moment sparked Heloise to write her first play about truth. Better yet, her truth about love. Tune in as we discuss putting yourself on the line...and the awkwardness of American one night stands.


EP 33 | Time For A Donor Dad w/Sam Hodgson

There’s no life partner, boyfriend, husband, or drunken one night stand in this story. But rather, on the other side of the world, a Donor Dad. Tune in to hear Sam’s journey from realizing she wanted a child more than anything and was willing/able to do it on her own, how she would let go of the concept one lover will provide everything, and how she found a man who was emotionally ready to be the “good family friend” in her child’s life forever.


EP 32 | Rom Coms to Real Talk w/Leo N

What would you do if you heard someone shared your same (slightly obsessive) passion for romantic movies? WE GAVE HIM AN EPISODE! And he explained why The Big Sick hit very close to home, shared tips on how to win over a Vietnamese mom, and discussed his journey from hiding to celebrating his asian heritage.


EP 31 | My Dad's in the CIA w/Justin Reed

Ever hear a story that’s almost too crazy to be fake? On this week’s episode we sit down with Justin Reed and dive into a story that started with a confession over 20 years in the making. You would think I lifetime filled with lies would lead to trust issues, but it’s the exact opposite! Listen to his episode and hear how it all played out.


EP 29 | Life as Foster Child w/Lisa Marie Basile

Excited to kick off a brand new season with the inspiring Lisa Marie Basile. Lisa’s story takes some unpredictable turns from life in foster care to practicing witchcraft and creating rituals. Don’t worry, it’s not as SPOOKY as it may sound! She is an editor, writer and poet living in NYC. She’s written two books of poetry Apocryphal, and Nympholepsy - due out next November. Her upcoming first novel is a fiction about New Orleans, sex death, and finding the self. But her writing doesn't end...