I love that you self-describe as “difficult.” A counselor once pointed out to me that this was good thing- because it means we’re trying hard to challenge, think, ponder, wonder, and work hard to color outside the lines. My closest and most beloved friends love me (and I would wager, you too) for that very reason. It makes them think (as you make me think) and the value is that those who love us also appreciate that we sometimes are willing to shine the light on our own internal monsters. That can be exquisitely uncomfortable for those who would prefer to be soothed all the time. That path has no interest. The road less taken can be full of brambles and snakes, but along the way, my god the discoveries.
It took me far too many years to stop apologizing for being, thinking, feeling differently. I am hugely fortunate to have had “difficult” people- many of them women of all ages- who bring me up short and force me to pay full attention. We are lucky beyond words for difficult people, J.E. They may make our hackles rise, but by god, that to me is the first sign that I’m about to learn something important. I appreciate your input very much. Difficult is a gift. It throws up a mirror, and it’s likely something I need to look at. If nobody ever challenged me, I would be stunted, limited and self congratulatory. In other words, a righteous asshole. Difficult people keep me from heading in that direction, or at least if I do, they do an excellent job of roping me back.