Meet Caroline

Caroline McGraw

An ongoing mystery in my life is how best to respond when people ask, “What do you write about?”

This question is hard, both because it’s broad and because the answer is always changing. It’s difficult to put into words what I … well … put into words.

Since my Myers-Briggs type is INFJ, I love going past shallow-end small-talk and wading into deeper conversational waters. So while I have memorized tidy, interview-ready answers to the question of what I write, I often end up abandoning them.

I work hard at writing and speaking, and I love to rework sentences until they sing. But I am just like my favorite fictional character, Jane Eyre, in that I would always rather be happy than dignified.

So since you’re here, and you’re wondering what I write about, here’s my best attempt at a reply …

I write about forgetting and remembering.

Here’s a distillation of every story I tell: “Caroline forgets that everyone, including her, is irreversibly, unconditionally loved. Then – jubilation! – she remembers.”

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Light-bulb moment at TEDxBirmingham’s 2016 All Star Salon; photo credit Kate Rexrode Smith Photography

It’s funny how often I forget basic spiritual truths. For example, I have a tendency to look for peace and contentment everywhere except where I can actually find them: within.

I persist in thinking that if I can just get everything under control … if I can get all my ducks in a row … then I will be happy.

You’d think I’d have learned by now that this is crazy. I can effect personal change – by showing up and showing love, by being brave and telling the truth – but I am not in charge of capital-L Life.

Really, it wouldn’t be advisable for me to take the wheel. After all, my very best experiences and relationships have all taken me completely by surprise. You’d think I’d have figured out by now that my plans are not the be-all and end-all.

But no. I have amnesia, and I want to drive the bus.

As my friend Glennon Melton writes at Momastery, “It’s like we really only need to know ten true things but we have to keep learning those ten true things fresh and new forever. We are like Dory from Finding Nemo. Being Dory makes spiritual progress difficult.”

Oh, yes. Want to know what I’m like? I am like Dory. I have a kind heart, a lot of enthusiasm, and a short-term memory issue.

As such, I keep asking Life if She and I could just pull over and swap places, if I could please be in control of everything for a bit. Fortunately, Life knows me better than I know myself. When I try to take Her seat, She doesn’t get offended.

Instead, She just smiles at me with infinite kindness. She listens as I rant about how things should be. She waits for me to remember what I already know, which is that She’s Love, and She’s taking me – taking all of us – home.

Won’t you join us on the journey?

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