Focus on the GOOD.

Week of November 12th:  What a week.

I will admit this has been one of the toughest weeks I have had this year.  Ranks right up there when they told us we do not have ABA coverage for Cody’s therapy back in February.  It for sure has not been rainbows and unicorns but I wouldn’t trade it for the world.

I could share all the bullshit that happened this week but I think I will focus on what good came from these stressful events for us.

Monday , November 12th:  Cody’s well check went horrible! High anxiety and tears.

The good:  He has been a very healthy kiddo this year and last time he was there was last January. We also learned just how compassionate Cody’s Doctor really is. She offered us to come everyday for the rest of this week to work with Cody on visits. We slowly increased exposing him to checking vitals and hanging out in the rooms to build a little more confidence. I created a social story too and took photos of the office.  This will help prepare him for what is unfamiliar or unexpected. We have been reviewing it every day this week paired with the visit and plan to take it with us to assist with transitions and create a sense of familiarity.


Tuesday, November 13th:   My hubs turned 48 and did not get to prepare as much as I was hoping for his celebration.

 The good:  My Mom won a bundt cake from the baseball silent auction and it saved me so I was at least able to serve cake with family.

Wednesday, November 14th:  Spent almost $300 at the grocery Tuesday, to learn I left my wallet in my backpack at home after cashier scanned and bagged all my items.

The good: I did not end of having to re-shop and they only had to re scan my groceries. I also was eligible for a free turkey and was able to give it to one of my therapist who was not getting to go home for Thanksgiving this year.

Thursday, November 15thWe had a scare from Cameron on Thursday after one of his workouts and ended up having to take him to the doctor.  

The good: He is on the mend and this scare forced him to slow down and rest.  He received some fluids and we are hoping will be ok for his wisdom teeth surgery.  This was also the day, we were successful getting Cody’s well check visit at the doctors after visiting all week.

November 16 and through the weekend were good days all around.   We cleared our calendar and all rested. We were successful getting Cameron’s wisdom teeth surgery and he even gave us a much needed laugh coming out of recovery. He seems to be healing well and managed to be able to eat some turkey this holiday too.  His brother did not want him to be the only one to loose teeth so Cody lost his second front tooth too!  Tooth fairy came and brought some goldfish and money!


Monday, November 19 at 10:10 pm I was thankful for that red light.

Cameron called and Brad rushed to him after he said he was in a car wreck.  I had to send the text every parent dreads, “Is he ok?” Brad had Cameron call me back and he was completely fine with only a small marking from the seat belt on his shoulder.  He was sitting at a red light and when the light changed and he drove off, a car jumped out into his path and he t-boned into the driver’s side door.  When he walked in, I hugged and didn’t want to let go. Told him it’s just a car and just thankful he was ok.

So why am I sharing this? Don’t let a day go by without a hug or telling your loved ones you love them.  If Cam’s light was green he would have been going at a speed that may had ended with a different outcome probably for him and the other driver and the elderly mother in the passenger seat.  And for #ThePack who had his back even off the field, to pull over and stop to make sure he was OK, I thank you for that.

The good:  Allowed me to talk to God more this week and thank him for his gifts.  I am thankful for red lights and for Him giving me the gift of my children.

It also reminded me and others to be thankful every day, not just on Thanksgiving but every day.


We ended the week with some wonderful food and spending time with my in-laws.  I cooked my first turkey and was thrilled how it turned out.   Cameron had a successful hunt and we could not get Cody off his tractor all weekend long.



We may have had a few hurdles but its times like these that put things in prospective. I even found myself more vulnerable and reaching out to those that I have not spoken with in a while. We are all looking forward to some normalcy and routine again and this purposefully through the holidays.

On the bright side, Jude is settling in very nicely and seems to be getting in her new routine.  She met her new vet and we had her new patches for her vest completed.  She keeps checking in on her senior sister, Lily and not understanding why Lily is much slower and not very playful.  They make great sleeping buddies though.



We have been able to get in some bonding time with Jude and Cody too. Jude is part of our morning dressing routine and story telling at bedtime. She now stays in Cody’s room until he falls asleep.  She attends Speech Therapy with us now and our therapist has incorporated a few programs with the two of them.  She picks up Cody everyday at school and we pre-measured food and Cody has started feeding Jude her meals and verbally giving her commands paired with mine.

Our focus is establishing a close bond with these two and all of these things will help enhance this.  Cody even offers unprompted kisses at times now.


**Apologies for duplication but want it noted in blog for my boys.

Published by mamalamaneustupa

Bio My name is Shelley Neustupa. I am a mother of two cool boys and a wife of 22 years to my high school sweetheart. My oldest son attends the University of Oklahoma. Boomer! My youngest is in 2nd grade and was diagnosed with Autism and Mixed Receptive Expressive Disorder at age 2. Since his diagnosis, I promised him I would advocate and educate as hard as he works each day in therapy. I began writing and have been able to touch many parents that may be new to this journey providing them with actual experiences (not candy coated), support and resources through my entries. Writing is my therapy and my hope one day that my nonverbal son will be able to take these diaries and speak about his own journey and how autism relates to his own experiences. Who knows he and his older brother may become National Speaker’s one day? Come along on our journey to better understand our lives through the eyes of a boy with autism, his Skilled Companion dog Jude, his big brother (and best friend) and mom and dad. My raw vulnerability captures the everyday moments of our journey and will bring even more awareness. A week does not go by where we do not learn something new about ourselves and I want to share these chapters with you. My Sons Undeniable Strengths… Extremely smart and figures out things quickly. Has a memory that allows him to remember more things than I could ever hope for. Persuasive by his personality and sheepish looks. Overabundance of stamina and strength. Loves the outdoors. Enjoys life and always has fun with an unforgettable smile. You can find us here: Writer: Autism Through His Eyes Facebook Instagram YouTube Pinterest Canine Companions for Independence News Interview Cody and Skilled Companion Jude - Our Story

2 thoughts on “Focus on the GOOD.

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