After a couple of weeks of relatively leisurely starts, our last day in STL began in a slight panic. Having started packing the previous night I realised that I might have to jettison most of my clothes to get everything in the two suitcases. So, I did the (now, I guess almost customary) dash to get an extra bag - and along with it, one final shuttle bus run with Carlton. In the end, we were packed and ready in plenty of time so sat in the lobby and said final goodbyes to a few passing friends.
Getting onto the Manchester bound flight was rather interesting, given a couple of delays but we made it by the skin of our teeth. The flight was fine, and Ev even managed a small nap from 2130 - 0030 (STL time). He woke up with 26 minutes of the flight to go, and when he saw this info on the in-flight screens he was so giddy. Just kept smiling his big (slightly gappy) smile, wanting hugs and giving high-5s. We had to wait to until everyone had got off, so he was a bit impatient, but we were whisked through passport control and, as our bags were last on in Chicago, they were first off so we were done really quickly. [PS - Massive thanks to my other Big Journey Buddies - Wayne & Char, we certainly couldn't have got home without them]
The last minute of Evan's Big Journey.
As we got to the the departure area, I got Ev out of his wheelchair and we walked hand-in-hand to meet our family. Oh, yes - I didnt mention that, did I ....?
Evan's PT homework had included walking holding both "pinkies" and last Sunday we tried a bit of single handed balancing. And then a couple of steps. Over the week he got a little better, and is starting to get more balanced and can now do about 20/30 steps (before he starts laughing and loses his balance).
It is still a LONG, LONG, LONG way to go - but we are so proud. Im sure you will understand that this was some news that we had to save for Loup to see in person. She is Ev's Mum and made a massive sacrifice over the last couple of weeks. However, when he took those few steps towards her, I think it was worth it.