Today, Pat and I walked Pádraig across the room – with some help, advice, and support. But we did it. And we thought this was absolutely brilliant. But the best was still to come.

Following a session in the Lokomat and a (light) lunch, Pádraig had an hour of speech and language therapy (SLT). We thought: lets try how well Pádraig can read. That’s when the really amazing thing happened – something we had tried before, but more on a casual basis. What happened today, caused a bit of enthusiasm with the SLT. (I did point out to her that ‘a bit’ and ‘enthusiasm’ don’t really go well together.) It was an amazing first!

The way it works went like this. She showed Pádraig a card with a word on it.

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When he had read the word, he pressed the switch.

The she showed him three cards with different pictures on them. Once he had seen the cards, he pressed the switch.

Then she showed to Pádraig one card after the other again and asked him to press the switch when he saw the picture that matched the word. I wasn’t sure whether he even knew the word ‘Mütze’. He did and when the third card with the ‘Mütze’ came up he pressed the switch.

She repeated the whole exercise with a shoe, a t-shirt, and a chair – and each time Pádraig pressed the switch to match the picture with the word.

We’ll try out some more complicated reading exercises tomorrow. Why has he never read? Imagine Pádraig flicking through web pages, FB pages, music sites… reading the news.