That’s All She Wrote
My quest is over. I’ve found the truth buried under a decade plus of lies. It's beautiful and I finally have complete peace. Not like peace where I have to accept that certain things will never be resolved and move forward despite them, but real total and COMPLETE peace.
This past year, July 2020-now, I’ve done a lot of growing. I’ve been growing at varying different rates since the start of my recovery in 2013, but this past year has been leaps and bounds. It all started with an innocent letter to Noah’s parents thanking them for their tiny, quiet, interventions on my behalf during the relationship with their son. I didn’t ask for a reply, nor did I expect one. It wasn’t written as an invitation for further involvement in my life or a request for further involvement in their lives. It was just a thank you. An extremely late thank you, but a sincere one.
I think my decision was weighed heavily by the pandemic, and receiving the amazing opportunity to learn from Dr. Young. Dr. Young had a wealth of experience. Both in teaching, and general life. He taught at many different institutions before he wound up at my little online school. Some of them were very prestigious. One of them was particularly niche and focused on a very specific skillset the gist of which was leadership and conflict resolution. He often wove the curriculum from that experience in with our own. I really learned a lot from him, both in class as well as in life. He would often share stories of his past and unique individuals he encountered during his time in the military serving all over the world as well as his wealth of different teaching experiences. His stories from the past often ended with: "Gee... I don't know what happened to that kid. I wish I did." This made me ponder after considering the genuine concern Bo had in his eyes when we parted ways. So I decided to jump waaaaaaaaaaaay out on the tiniest limb to let Bo know that I was doing well and thank both him and Cheri for their kindness and hospitality.
While I won't share the contents of the letter here, basically I re-introduced myself, took ownership of bickering with Noah for the past 13 years, said my thank you and promised to respect their boundaries moving forward. It was very cut and dry, straight forward and simple. I didn't bullshit, didn't blame, just said my piece and moved on effectively closing the door to that part of my life.
It was a tense week or two waiting to see if the letter was deliver/received. I knew before I even dropped it in the mailbox that there were at least three primary scenarios that would likely unfold.
1) It would go immediately into the trash and never be seen.
2) Bo would receive it, and immediately call his lawyer to sue me for… something. Which seems weird, but that's what Noah always threatened me with if I dared to ask his parents for anything. Even when we were still dating. Noah was very clear. "Don't EVER talk to my parents. They don’t care. They don’t have time. My dad makes people disappear! I'm going to call my dad, the lawyer will fix it." While I suspected this was at least partially bullshit bravado when Noah was feeling insecure, I didn't actually know so I was prepared for it being the worst case scenario out of the three.
3) Bo would receive it, and appreciate it. Maybe discuss it with Noah, but overall nothing would really change.
While I don't know exactly what happened, I'm leaning most toward option three. Bo read it, and he definitely talked to Noah about it. Except, instead of continuing on down the same damn road of constantly bickering about our relationship... Noah's behavior immediately changed and Mia became uncharacteristically silent about everything. God love you, Bo.
Do I think Bo intentionally intervened and told Noah and Mia to STFU and leave me alone? No. It was probably a lot more along the lines of: "Who is this person? What the hell is she talking about? Are you fighting with her? Why?!"
You see, I've recently discovered that as much as Noah lied about his family, he's also lied to his family. Bo and Cheri probably do know at least some of what's been going on between Noah and I. Especially since an incompetent detective decided to call them during Thanksgiving Day in 2016. They’ve been here at least once after the Thanksgiving Fiasco and read through a few of my more ugly relapse posts… but they never got the entire story. They only saw what Noah/Mia wanted them to see. They have no idea the extent of the trauma, or all the hard work to put in to overcome it. And... that's okay. They don't have to know my side of the story. It really doesn't change a damn thing.
The important part of sending the letter and why it motivated me to jump forward in my healing process was confronting Noah's dishonesty. I got what I needed. Bo did not have me "disappeared." Now to be sure, if I was a genuine threat to Noah's safety Bo likely would have responded differently. He does have the means "make people disappear" if he wanted to. The very important thing that Noah always neglected to mention about Bo is that while he has the means, he also has the wisdom and integrity not to use them unless duly warranted. Just some of the valuable lessons he learned at a very prestigious school. A very niche school that teaches a very specific skillset.
Yep, the same school where Dr. Young was faithfully teaching leadership and conflict resolution among other things from 1976-1987. I don’t know the specifics of how Bo ended up there, if he was ever in one of Dr. Young’s classes, or ended up being an instructor himself. I just know Bo had an academic paper sponsored by the school published in 1985, and after learning from Dr. Young how challenging and immersive the school was no matter who did the teaching I can say with absolute certainty: I trust Bo judgement.
Noah and Mia are both entirely full of shit. I don't believe a damn word out of their mouths anymore. I don't know anything about Cheri really, but I do trust Bo. However he decided to handle the situation is guaranteed to be the most effective way to diffuse the conflict.
And that's why this year has been so successful for me. That cloud of doubt and fear that Noah held over my head about his father's ability to effectively erase me finally lifted. I finally had the room I needed to breathe and release the last bits of my past that had been rattling around in my head. The final piece of the puzzle really came with retrieving my lost jewelry. I don't know why that moment was The Thing that finally put everything to rest. I just know that before that moment I still felt tethered to the past, and after that moment, when I held those tiny little pieces of silver in my hand I felt free.
With that freedom slowly came the realization that I don't need this anymore. I don't need to publicly shout my story from the rooftops in an attempt to avoid erasure. I can just... be. I can exist and experience my feelings and memories and emotions quietly again. I don't have to try to hide and live this double life anymore desperately trying to cling to my existence while fighting against Mia's attempts to silence me and invalidate absolutely everything that mattered to me.
I couldn't be mad at Noah, because Mia thought that was unfair. I couldn't miss Noah because Mia twisted those feelings into an "obsession". I couldn't relive the good memories because they were all "fake, made up lies" according to Mia, but if I spoke only of the traumatic things that happened they were "fake made up lies." Mia took people who I thought were my friends, and even complete strangers and turned them against me. Writing my thoughts and feelings publicly was the only way I could safely retaliate, especially when I was still terrified of Bo.
Now? I can confidently tell Mia to fuck off and continue on unbothered about how she might respond. I don't need to reconnect with Bo and Cheri beyond sending my letter and finding my lost jewelry. I don't need to talk to Noah again to be at peace with all the bullshit that Mia stirred up from 2013 until 2020. I really don't have anything else to say. The truth is a very powerful thing. Genuine people very easily recognize it, and those who don't? I don't want to associate with them. It took me a long time to realize that, but I'm really glad I finally did.