Meredith McCarroll is an essayist and scholar from Western North Carolina. She is the author of Unwhite: Appalachia, Race, and Film (University of Georgia Press, 2018) and co-editor of Appalachian Reckoning: A Region Responds to Hillbilly Elegy (West Virginia University Press, 2019). Her essays have appeared in Southern Cultures, Bitter Southerner, Avidly, and elsewhere. She teaches at Bowdoin College in Maine.
My challenge was to pack enough so that Mom would believe that she’d live long enough to need clothes for warmer weather, but not so much that it seemed I didn’t believe she could go back home by the summer