Personal Essays on family & work.

The New York Times

Empty Nests Are Overrated

Becoming a foster parent involves inherent risks. But is it in the end the children who are really taking the bigger gamble?

Boston globe magazine


After the Crash

“Two kids were hit on Ferry Road.” So begins life on the other side of the stretcher; a world of drunk driving, brain injury and death, but ultimately also of endurance, hope and grace.

Poets & Writers


Going Back to Where It Was

Writing personal essays by necessity involves re-living old trauma and opening healed wounds. But it also allows for some measure of sovereignty over an unchangeable past.

The truth of memoir



Carolyn reflects on the transformative power of words.  Her essays and books have at turns served as memory for her son, filling in gaps stolen by brain injury, ice-breaker for her family re-kindling conversations long gone cold, and therapy, helping her as a writer and mother to process her grief and heal her heart.

The Writer


Have Notebook, Will Travel

In the words of Henry James, “a good writer is one on whom nothing is lost.” Carolyn shares her penchant for capturing snippets of dialogue, ideas for stories, and interesting new words by carrying a notebook everywhere.

Chicken Soup for the Soul


Is there a Doctor in the Family?

Here Carolyn limns the fine balance between being a doctor and a family member and questions whether she is cherry-picking the scientific data when she nudges her mother-in-law toward a cancer treatment she initially declined.