No sooner do I get my tendency to slip out with a word that I shouldn’t say under control than the Difficult People seem to crawl right out of the woodwork of my life.

Now, I want to make one thing clear: I’m as difficult as any Difficult Person who comes my way. Thanks for asking, because I like my coffee a certain way, and no, my socks can’t be tucked under so they feel funny, and yes, I will pollute the morning quiet with my morning rosary, which I have to do verbally lest I lose my place.

Even knowing that I am a Difficult Person does not seem to give me special forbearance for the Difficult People who seem to be all around me. One day, it might be a preschooler whose only tone is whine, at a decibel level that would make the hard of hearing understand clearly. Another day, it might be the person in front of me at the stoplight, who seemed to have used the time to take a nap (or update their social media account) instead of paying attention.

There are the people who cannot. leave. me. alone. who seem to pair up with the people I can never seem to reach when I need. While I’m on the phone with one person, I’m getting pings and texts from another. (Or tugs and pulls while I pound on a door, but that’s a different scenario…)

I won’t get into the DPs who cross my path in the grocery, the gas station, or the restaurant, because I’m betting they’re universal. In fact, they’re even humorous…most of the time.

I’ve come to realize that the truly Difficult People in my life are the people I’m closest to. Sadly, it’s not the stranger wh0 should fear my wrath, but my own children. The poor frazzled clerk at the checkout is more likely to get a sympathetic word  from me than the child who soared her pink pony blanket across the living room and broke her sister’s favorite trinket and stands at my feet sobbing.

These Difficult People are really making it tough for me to get off easy around here. Thanks to them, I have to practice patience (instead of just pray for it). Because of their impact, I have to make dinners (instead of just eat them). I have them to thank for my efficiency with laundry and writing, for my ability to talk in three conversations at once, and for the knack I suddenly have for sleeping under a desk. I didn’t fully realize what rude was until I started identifying it in others, and I suddenly noticed a lot of not-perfectness in my own life with certain people started mimicking my words and actions.

I guess, after all, I should be thankful for these Difficult People who seem to be everywhere. I should probably even call them blessings. Without them, I don’t think I’d stand a chance for getting to pre-holiness!

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