Murray has achieved a huge amount this month. He's only been back in school four weeks but they have been four very special weeks because now he is walking to and from school himself every day. Up to last June Murray was getting the special needs bus transport service that is provided to his special needs school but he had asked us all summer if he could start walking to and from school from September.
Although Murray was 16 at the end of August, for lots of reasons, we were a little concerned, a little anxious, a little worried about this big STEP.
But we practised and Murray knew the route well, it's a long walk - nearly 3kms each way but Murray really wanted to do this.
For the first few days in September, his sister walked with him in the morning to make sure he was confident of the route and to make sure he kept remembering what roads to cross. That ensured a very long walk for her before she got the 46A into school but sisters are good like that!
It helps that there are three lollypop ladies along the route at all the major road crossings, Murray's getting to know them well. It helps also that there is a shop on route that Murray calls into every afternoon on his way home to get an ice-cream! His special treat! Learning to take some money into school, not lose it, go into the shop, order his ice-cream and pay for it - have all been extra responsibilities for him but it's all be working out fine. Huge thanks to Rachel in Patterson's shop for the big warm welcome she gives to Murray each day and the special 'chat' she has with him.
Murray knew when he started walking there was no 'way-out' of doing the walk every day - his Mom is still on crutches and not meant to the driving so she wouldn't be taking him to school any morning or collecting him after a long day. If it rained he was still walking! Lucky for Murray, there has been only one wet walk - a Friday afternoon! Clever Murray realised there was no point in buying an ice-cream that day either!! He did come home wet but he was still happy! That's our Murray!
We have held our breaths collectively this past month, wondering if this next BIG step for Murray would work out okay and keep on working. But yes, it most certainly has and as the month draws to a close we can celebrate another 'milestone for Murray'.
Mom, Dad, Sorcha and Clive think you're great Murray! Well done for achieving your next 'step' and it certainly is a lot of steps you're doing every day!
We couldn't be prouder of you!
Clive racing towards Murray as he walks home from school!
You couldn't find too happier boys every afternoon at 3.30pm as Murray walks down our road!
- Clive & Co