Dear Loyal Reader,
Have you missed me here on this blog? Some of you have messaged me."What the heck, Karen? Did you stop writing on Confessions?"
I'm still here. I'm just trying to change my focus.
Recently, I have been writing on KarenWesleyWrites.medium.com Medium is a digital reading platform where writers like myself have the opportunity to connect with readers from around the globe. It's also a writing platform where writers earn money for their work.
I hope that you will join me there. You can create an account by signing in with your social media account or email address. It's free to read a certain amount of stories per month. I also post a free "friend link" on my Instagram, Facebook Page, and Twitter. Of course, you already follow me on social media, right?
On "Medium," you have the opportunity to engage and build a relationship with writers like me, who you love, by "clapping" on our articles, writing thoughtful responses, and highlighting your favorite passages. If you comment or ask a question, I will reply. You can also sign up to have my posts come directly to your email address.
If you enjoy reading great stories from writers from all over the world and want to support the art of writing, please consider signing up for a Medium membership. When you use my membership link, most of your monthly membership ($5.00) will directly support my writing.
Membership fees allow Medium to pay writers. You have unlimited access to all of the good stuff from other writers in your subjects of interest. I mean, Barack Obama writes there. Yep! Me and Barack.
Thousands of writers have been writing in this digital format and earning a living (or at least a cup of coffee) with their work for years.
I started writing on "Medium" because want to change the focus of my writing since the boys are now adults. They have their own stories to tell. I want to diversify and write about mental health, wellness, self-care, and perhaps a few opinion humor and pieces.
I also hoped to change the focus of my life. They say what you focus on grows. I don't know who "they" is, but... I thought maybe if I stopped writing so much about parenting autism, the issues associated with it would disappate in my life. Imagine my disappointment when that didn't happen.
The transition to adulthood is the hardest part of parenting autism. At least, that has been my experience. My boys are 23 and 26. I am exhausted. I have zero control over anything. I'm just a passenger with a first-class seat to watch them move their lives sideways, backward, and occasionally forward. I can not control their action or inaction, even if it impacts my stress level.
Autism continues to impact my life no matter what I write about. I will continue to be a voice for autism parents who walk this path. I have been writing this blog for nearly 12 years. I started writing to create autism awareness. I wanted to paint a picture of day-to-day life raising two teenage boys on the autism spectrum. They also happen to be black, growing up in a primarily white suburb of Austin, Texas.
From the start of this blog, my intention was not one of financial gain. I have earned pennies from my writing in this format. I was too stressed out, raising my sons and keeping them alive. There was no energy to consider monetizing my writing. I couldn't imagine adding the stress of writing deadlines, editors, and publishers' demands to my chaotic life. Although, my close friends and husband strongly encouraged me to do so.
People who are not writers think you're not a "real writer" unless you publish a book. I am published all over the internet. (Google Karen Wesley Weaver) I am one of the Top Ten Autism Blogs in 2020 by Everyday Health.com My essays have been published in two books. I haven't made my first million dollars, so that doesn't count, right?
Other people can not measure my payoff, success as a writer, a mother, or anything else I chose to do with my life.
At the beginning of this blog, the boys and I agreed that if our story helped one person feel less alone in this world, or allowed one person to be inspired to keep going, then it is worth it to share our story.
I write for my life and sanity. I come here when I have nowhere else to turn. This blog was a source of therapy when I didn't have a therapist. The writing is raw, with no sugarcoating or making it perfect and pretty. I'm trying to do that now on Medium, and let me tell you, my brain doesn't work so good anymore. Prolonged stress has changed my brain. Still, I try.
I just celebrated my 57th birthday. I'm in menopause. Hormonal imbalance finds me crying at the drop of a hat. I'm tired. My mental health is in the toilet. It's hard to know what is caused by what and what to do to make things better.
My biggest job in autism parenting has become holding boundaries while trying to move my sons towards independence. Of course, I have zero control over this outcome. The only person I can control is me. That has always been true. It just slaps me in the face now.
All we can do is build ourselves up with self-compassion, self-love, and self-care. I will be writing about it along the way. Maybe someday, I can pay for all of the therapy we need with my writing earnings. Ha!
I appreciate you for always supporting my work.
You can also find all of my links, including one for a direct donation to support my work on My Linktree.