Caitlin McCoy (Source: Caitlin McCoy)

I believe it’s time I introduce myself to you.

Hi, my name is Caitlin McCoy. I’m the new kid. As of one week ago, I am the digital content editor and writer for I Am Second. What? Even as I type those words I feel like I’m dreaming. I have been following I Am Second for seven years, encouraged by the films and inspired by the content. Many of my friends and family members have received links via text or email paired with a “You will LOVE this” note.

I was drawn to I Am Second’s narrative years ago for multiple reasons, but the thing I loved the most was the fact that the stories were real, raw, and relatable. I was a freshman in college at Texas A&M when the first film was released. Being a typical freshman, I was trying so hard to put on a perfect face, marketing myself to potential new friends in hopes that I could “find myself.” In the midst of my striving, polishing, and faking, I stumbled onto Second stories that scratched the record. Refreshing.

Instead of putting on the “I’m-a-good-little-Christian” face, these folks were doing quite the opposite, and I really liked that.

See, here’s the thing. I have a had a passion for writing since I was 6 years old. Even more than that, I have a deeper passion for encouraging people from all walks of life. Whether we agree or not, whether I know you or we’ve never met. I want people to know they are not alone. So, when I read the job description for this role in November 2015, I immediately felt a strong, resounding YES in my heart. Y’all, I live for this.

And here I am.

I’ve set a few goals for myself as an I Am Second editor, and I’d like to let you in on these so you can keep me accountable. Seriously, if you think I’m not accomplishing what I set out to do, call me out! But… be nice.

I want to write about personal stories I’ve never told anyone else before. Why? C.S. Lewis says, “To love at all is to be vulnerable.” I think we can all agree this world is in need of some serious love. This love doesn’t come from carefully crafted messaging but from honest and ugly truth.

My hope is that when I share my ugly truth with you, someone somewhere will say, “Me too.” We have so many “me too’s” that we have yet to discover in each other because we are hiding them in the dark, secret parts of our hearts. I want to help bring these to light. Only then will we realize that we are not alone in this mess.

I want to help others write personal stories they’ve never told anyone else before. Why? While I’m an open book and will probably share too much detail about what I ate for dinner and the dream I had the night before, there are those that feel more comfortable keeping their lives to themselves. And that’s not always bad. However, in those closed books are stories that could potentially save someone’s life. If we are truly living second, then we should be willing to share personal stories for the sake of others.

You’ll never know how powerful your story is until you share it!

I want to share your photos, quotes, and thoughts on social media. Why? While we post films of pro-athletes and rock stars, you’re the one that will ultimately carry the I Am Second story into unreached places. You’re the one that will have life-changing conversations with your friends and family. So, please keep sharing your #livesecond pictures with us. This is more effective than you probably realize.

Okay, there’s that. And now, here’s this.

  • I’m marrying the most amazing human, Ryan Jordan, on February 27 in Fort Worth, Texas. Home of the stockyards and honky tonks, y’all!
  • I’m the youngest of four siblings and my family is really stinking important to me.
  • There is now a puppy in my life, and his name is Mud. He’s crazy and awesome.
  • Huge fan of the Texas Rangers.
  • I can play the flute and I enjoy American Sign Language. Need to polish up on both.
  • Snow cones are the key to my heart.
  • I write to Sigur Rós, and occasionally belt out songs from Fiddler on the Roof.
Ryan and Mud

Caitlin, her fiancé, Ryan, and their dog, Mud. (Source: Caitlin McCoy)

I hope that by deep-diving into all that is I Am Second, my life begins to truly reflect the name: Jesus and others first, me second.