Like Cars: Life Moves Pretty Fast

I remember the day vividly when Cameron came home from school to tell me about his A on a poem he wrote for his AP Language Arts class. I asked him to share it with me and immediately printed off to frame for our guest bath.  You see, when I first read, it made me a sad and brought me to tears.  2014 brought quite a few changes for our family:  AUTISM.

The 6 months before Cody’s diagnosis we started therapies based on the developmental delays we were seeing with him.  We were scared.  We were distracted. We were numb.  Deep down in our soul, we knew what we were up against in our near future, but it was too difficult to accept or admit because we wanted to be wrong.  During this time of worry in our lives, we lost sight for a short time on our 11-year-old paving and learning his way through his first year of middle school with new friends.  Until the day he shared his poem.  Where Cameron may have not realized, his  poem was like an alarm going off in my head.

So, you see, 5 years later, I still hang this poem proudly as a reminder for myself and who else may be using our guest bath:

“Life moves pretty fast.  If you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it.”  Ferris Bueller’s Day Off 

6th grade poem

This quote expresses the most important lesson I learned that year – the importance of slowing down and being present.  I don’t mean literally moving slower, I mean acknowledging and taking advantage of small moments in your everyday life to be present and reflective.

Intentionally take the time to reflect and process. This took me about 4 years to learn.  Once we received Cody’s diagnosis, it was a stressful time in our lives, our brains became more equipped to think, worry and stress about the future instead of the past and present.  Reflecting and processing your day is a simple mental workout to strengthen your brain and your well-being.

Today, I have learned to slow down and try my best to manage through my words, my advocating and my health and creating those memories.

How many summers to you have left with your children living at home?

Cameron, 2.

Cody, not sure what our future and can’t answer this today.

Life is short, time is fast, no replay, no rewind, so enjoy every moment as it comes.


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

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