Continued from previous page.

Dan and Eric Pearce

How could he, though? How could he know of the decades of shame, truth-burying, and self-loathing I’d gone through to “decide” this. How could he know that there was never any kind of decision at all? Just an unavoidable confession made to myself in a very dark moment of my existence.

How could he know that he was one of the ones I feared telling most, simply because I stood to lose the most with him?

When did you decide this?

The earth trembled beneath me when he said it. Or so it felt. I am certain my heart did.

How could he know?

He couldn’t.

He’d been taught the same two things I had throughout our lives.

People like me have a choice.

People like me are among the worst of all sinners.

And so, after I told him who I was, it was inevitable that I would hear it.

The silence.

The silence that I knew meant that two very emotional and different parts of his soul were pulling at him from opposite sides.

One side said, love unconditionally. The other side said, this is so very… bad.

I was tempted to press the power button on my computer. I wanted to hide. I wanted to be free of that moment more than any other that preceded.

What if he chose to listen to the side that would leave me without the love, friendship, and alliance that we had build for the past 31 years? What if he chose to listen to the side that thought me a sinner first, a threat second, and his brother third? What if he chose to listen to the side that offered no facilities or lenience for love?

As much as I wanted to, I didn’t shut off the computer. I didn’t run. I didn’t hide.

Because…

What if he chose to listen to the half that told him, love your brother unconditionally?

I told him my secret because I believed that love would find a way to push out that other, ugly side.

And when he said those five words, I feared for an eternal but brief moment that the ugly side was strong enough to win. I feared that I had just lost my brother and my best friend.

When did you decide this?

I didn’t really reply when he said it.

And then, I heard it again.

That soul-tearing silence.

He eventually swallowed once more. “Well, I just want you to know that this doesn’t change anything. I’m here for you, brother.”

My mouth couldn’t find words.

Love won.

And after I hung up with him, I cried.

Dan Pearce, Single Dad Laughing

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Dan Pearce is an American-born author, app developer, photographer, and artist. This blog, Single Dad Laughing, is what he’s most known for, with more than 2 million daily subscribers as of 2017. Pearce writes mostly humorous and introspective works, as well as his musings which span from fatherhood, to dating, to life, to the people and dynamics of society. Single Dad Laughing is much more than a blog. It’s an incredible community of people just being real and awesome together!