A reintroduction after writing hiatus

I never expected to be where I am now. And I am everything I expected I would be now.

I never thought I would be a single mom now. And I know I am a better parent because of that now.

I never thought I would still not be in the career I want at age 45, right now. And I know that every day I keep learning, especially now.

These seem like complete contradictions. Since I last wrote for The Hinsdalean, so much has changed, and these statements are completely true and in juxtaposition to one another. The more I have changed, the more I realize I have become the person I truly want to be.

When I left off over six years ago in June 2015, these were my last lines:

"There comes a time when you have to stop crossing oceans for people who wouldn't even jump puddles for you.

Yes. Exactly. Right. So go find your own circles of happiness, and dance in them. Give and take chances."

It still took me a while to truly do this, and I now live by these words. I have started politely declining activities that will wear me too thin (more on that in another article.) And, as a "doer", I am slowing down and focusing more on spending quality time with those most important in my life.

I can observe my reactions and work to change those reactions, as I cannot control when happens in my life or what others do around me. I read the "Daily Stoic" and re-read passages from "Atomic Habits," my two favorite books. I also receive Wake-Up Wednesday emails by the Live Better group, based in Chicago, to help guide me in day-to-day thoughts and long-term planning.

Despite all this motivation I surround myself with, and loving where I am in life, I do have my challenges. I have started back in grad school this fall, so that, after eight years staying at home with my kiddos and volunteering so much of my time, I can seem "relevant" to the types of companies for which I want to work.

There was a tough memory that I have only shared with one person, and I will share now: When I moved, my credit card was maxed out on new mattresses. I was trying to make my house livable, and I did not have any money coming in for a few days. I only had a few dollars.

An amazing, loyal client (you know who you are!) paid me for her next training sessions and I started crying. This was money that would get me through to the end of month. I will never forget that and let that fuel my fire to, as those Wake-Up Wednesday emails teach me, "live your best day ever."

I am excited to be back and share my journey, as I hope it brings some small crumb of inspiration as we all experience challenges in life. Thank you for reading.

- Mistie Psaledas of Hinsdale is a contributing columnist. Readers can email her at [email protected].