I have a l list of things I really don’t like. I’ve never really written them down on paper, just in my mind. Loosing Jim in Walmart, which now is a non-issue with cell phones, roaches, colored plastic Easter grass that reproduces and shows up under the couch in October, traffic and coming in at #1, mice. How can something so small be at the top of the list of things I really don’t like? I guess it’s because they’re so quick and sneaky and they leave poop trails. The worst part is if you spot one mouse you know their friends and relatives are not far behind.

My dislike started in college when we fed one for three months before he finally was trapped. If there are smart mice, this was one. We never figured out how he got the bait without setting off the trap. Every morning I had a creepy feeling he was watching from under the stove smiling because he had outsmarted us again.

When the kids were very young we lived in a subdivision surrounded by woods. A house in the cul-de-sac burned down and mice stormed the neighborhood looking for a free meal in the rubble. All the neighbors ended up with a mouse or twelve. Everyone was desperate to be rid of them except Jason, who was devastated over what he considered mouse executions. They were reproducing faster than we could trap them and I’m positive distant relatives of the original mouse invasion still lived in the attic when we moved two years later. You can see why they’re #1 on my list.

I was so frustrated with someone the other day. The more I thought, the more irritated I got. Then I realized something. Just like mice occupy a house, negative thoughts quickly sneak into our minds and if we aren’t careful they camp out there. Why are we so fast to criticize and judge people, most of the time without knowing their back story? Then we share our conjured up theories with others, the gossip begins, and just like mice, it leaves poop trails. The collateral damage gossip leaves is not as easy to clean up either. Consider the mice when your thoughts head in the wrong direction. I really should let negative, critical thinking share the #1 slot with the mice.

“If we are so busy judging people we don’t have time to love them.”
-Mother Teresa


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