Guess what? Just like when I told Jade, Will’s head didn’t explode either. He was surprised, sure, but he’d have been surprised by any out of the blue news I threw at him. And afterwards, he was chill, like it was no big deal, just life, you know?
It’s weird, me and Will. When we were growing up, I was the good kid every mother wanted playdates with, and Will was the one who had… issues. There was this time people thought he burned down a barn. And then he accidentally killed his brother’s girlfriend and ended up in a mental institution.
We read this book for English class a couple of years ago, "The Great Gatsby." The first lines are:
In my younger and more vulnerable years, my father gave me some advice that I've been turning over in my mind ever since.
"Whenever you feel like criticizing anyone," he told me, "just remember that all the people in this world haven't had the advantages that you’ve had."
I actually thought about Will when I first read it. Will and his mom, Barbara Ryan, who, in just the time I’ve been old enough to pay attention, has gone crazy and committed at least a half-dozen felonies, plus a bunch of misdemeanors, all while swearing she did it all to protect her kids, Paul, Jennifer and Will.
It’s no wonder Will was a little (okay, a lot, and he’d be the first one to say it) messed up growing up. And no wonder that, when I told him how nervous I was about coming out to Mom and Dad, he told me not to sweat it. Will said I have great parents.
I know he’s right.
I hope he’s right.