I found another draft today.

It’s funny, I have no memory of writing this one either.

Here it is:

Dear M&D,

I miss you both so much.

That’s what I’d want to say, so there you go.

Was it hard to write?

I’m thinking how much harder it would be to send or say in person.

But what’s really the worst that could happen?

What would be so wrong with just opening my mouth, forcing myself past the volcanic waves, and finally telling you both how much I want to be with you?

It’s crazy how someone could throw away their whole life on a whim in their 20’s, not even seeing how brash they’re being in abandoning everything and everyone they love so dear.

I feel terrible for . . . lots of things.

I’m trying to make some changes.

But even if I were to send this, and you were to really read it, I still wouldn’t expect you to believe a single word.

Why would you?

I have no credibility left.

Not anymore.

Just too many lies told too often for far too long . . . and it feels like I’m always starting over again from scratch.

So that’s why I don’t think I can send this.

But once I’m finally able to actually do what I’ve always worked so hard to convince everyone I’m already doing, or going to do . . . what I want to do more than anything . . . then I’ll know I’m ready.

Then I’ll come see you.

That’s my promise to myself, and it can’t just be words this time.

I have to become real.

If you were here, you’d see me turn to myself and plead something along of the lines of: PLEASE, NO MORE LIES!

I wonder what that would look like.

But I cringe now whenever it gets quiet enough, and I start thinking how obvious it must have been that everything out of my mouth was garbage all along.

I couldn’t keep a story straight to save my life.

My mind was a fuzzy, shot, dead mess.

What about all those crazy all-nighters that sort of built themselves up around me while you were upstairs trying to sleep?

Or how I’d disappear for days and weeks, and then show up all bruised and dirty without even trying to explain where I’d been, or what I’d been doing, or anything…?

Remember when I kept claiming I was only on “over-the-counter” drugs?

How many times did I drop out of whichever school?

Yeah, you and everyone must have known.

But still, you never stopped helping me.

You never talked down to me.

You never treated me like I was a failure, even though I’m sure you knew I was.

When I was a kid, I had these daydreams about one day being the one to finally reverse all that bad, dark stuff we…

But, D, that was you.

I saw the efforts you were making . . . going to meetings, forcing yourself to slow down and deal with me better.

You did everything you could.

I guess I’m just trying to say I never understood how amazing you both were, or how good I had it over THERE with you.

Sometimes I wish I’d never left.

I mean, it all happened so fast.

And now, years later, I’m still scraping by on others’ leftovers.

I guess I’m glad it’s finally forcing me to be more honest with myself.

Oh yeah, did I ever tell you I started going to church over THERE before I left?

I know we’re not exactly “church people,” and I only bring it up because something happened at service one morning I can’t stop coming back to in my mind.

This woman I’d never met said she had a “word” for me.

I guess that sort of thing was normal there, but I had no idea what to think.

The “word” was . . . she said she saw me standing in a new place, and when I turned around, expecting to see certain people there behind me, I was devastated to find myself alone.

She told me God had given her the vision so I’d know I was in the right place when it happened, and I’d know I wasn’t really alone . . . that I’d find the right people as soon as I was ready.

Yeah, I still feel very alone.

I’ve been HERE in this “new place” now for years.

I’ve certainly felt let down by some I thought would be there for me.

But more on that in another of these [fake] letters.

I’m actually less jaded than I probably sound.

People are people, and I’m learning just to let them be.

I’ll leave it there.

I so wish I could send this.

Love,

Me

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