The only baggage you can bring is all that you can't leave behind.

As a young girl, I had to forever be concerned with coolness because I had a big bro and that was the name of the game. Pride is a heavy burden to bear. It's one thing if you are an extrovert like big brothers but quite another when you find yourself with the timidity of a mouse. Some laugh as I describe myself thusly, but they don't even know. I was miserable with public fear in my formative years. A trooper nonetheless.

Motherhood stretches a person in unforeseeable ways. Years ago, I was forced to emerge from the warmth of my cozy shyness and join the pack. Unreluctant in the least to embrace my role, I still occasionally find myself withdrawing, or perhaps, rebounding, into a more comfortable solitude.

Winter tries to chase me away from her gray skies and chilly bones and I relate well to Grinchyness with his self loathing and slow slides into madness. One anxiety congeals with another to solidify into a freezing mass of unsecured emotions.

I can bust out if I want but it's rough out there in the cold and my wool socks get sweaty. Cool has frigid undertones through the changing seasons. It just ain't what it used to be.