It is the first cool night of fall, and always, I remember how much I feared the cold when I was starving myself.
When I was eighteen, and my boyfriend went off to college and there were no texts or cell phones, and all I had was a Jimmy Buffet CD and letters to warm me.
When I was nineteen, I got a tattoo of the sun on my inner heel to warm me. I was still starving myself. My grandfather rendered the sun in copper, and now I own it but don't know where to hang it.
I don't fear winter in the same way, because I am not that girl anymore. I know how the story plays out, at least as far as the second act. I know the protagonist is no longer starving.
But there is still fear. That I won't be relevant. That I won't be heard. That I'm what I fear: Just another small life on the rock that burns and then flames out for the sake of warming the planet for one second in an ocean of years.
It gets colder and the rock turns, but at least I am better equipped to face the turn.
Because I have grown. And I am no longer starving myself.