Dear Winter,

We need to have a talk.

Just thinking about you makes me angry. You and that frost you keep leaving on my windshield. Your icy sidewalks that are too cowardly to show their danger, but hide as regular concrete, plotting their vengeance on humans for walking on them all those other seasons.

I've seen your game before and I'll admit, it's cunning. You make me long for my cable-knit sweaters, present your charm through the crackling logs of a fire, entice me with the appeal of warm, spicy chili simmering on the stove.

But I'll not fall for that guise again - I know better. Those temptations are mere glimpses into your grander scheme to torture me and far outstay your welcome.

You are bad news for my general health, mentally and physically. When you come to town, I daily face the dreaded decision of whether to change out of my warm clothing (a 10 minute process in itself) and into shorts and a t-shirt to step into sub-freezing temperatures and go to the gym or hide under a blanket with another cup of hot tea. This is taxing for my physical condition, as the blanket tends to make terribly strong arguments on your behalf. And in turn, I begin to hate myself for slowly transforming into a submissive blob.

I love my sweaters and boots much as the next woman, but I also appreciate being recognized as a woman and not the Michelin Man. There is no world that exists in which I will ever look cute in the height of your cruel tenure. It is simply rude and insulting to insist upon defacing me this way.

I see you sneaking up on poor, adorable Fall. You act like you're friends - but how dare you. You're lucky to have Christmas on your side, but stay away from Thanksgiving - that is Fall's holiday and you just need to wait your turn.

In the past, you've been responsible for turning me into a grouchy recluse - hiding away, shivering and desperate. My family and friends are concerned about our relationship and I don't blame them at all- they are often the brunt of my bad moods after we've spent time together. To be fair, my dog thinks you are just hilarious and loves the way you tickle his nose with those charming snowflakes. But he's a dog. He has lots of fur for warmth and thinks that rolling around in poop is hilarious, too.

The truth is, I don't like the person I become when I'm around you. I know I said I missed you when I was away, and to an extent you can be really endearing. But Winter, you have to learn to tone it down. These polar vortexes are just too much. I can't allow you to disrespect my body, my time, and my relationships any more. You, sir, will not have the joy of relishing in my misery again.

If we're going to be living together for a while, I'd appreciate it if you could just take it easy. Learn to manage your excitement. Pull back a little on the ice storms -- they're so unnecessary. I think we could really learn to be friends if we can just come to an understanding and accept one another for who we are. Let's be civil and do this right.

Warmly,

Leah

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