Thanks to Stone Gardens for helping me to reach the Summit.
Dear Friends, Family and Patients,
Thank-you for the outpouring of both financial and emotional support. It truly means so much to me to feel the push behind me. I train every day for Yosemite and even on the early mornings, thinking of all of YOU who have supported the cause, makes it easy to get out there.
As a teenager, I spent months every year in the hospital. I was in pretty serious condition and even when I was home from the hospital I was quite weak. A family friend returned from Nepal following an attempt on Everest. He was very close to reaching the summit; he turned around at the Hillary Step. He promised when I came home from the hospital that I would get a slide show. He shared pictures of the mountain and stories of the expedition. When he left he gave me a signed photo of Mount Everest. Every day I lay in bed and stared at Everest and dreamed of mountaineering. It helped motivate me as I gained back my strength and weight. I felt a sense of camaraderie with the mountaineers who struggled, fought the elements and in the end whether reaching the summit or not had a deeper understanding of themselves and their climbing partners.
Perhaps I recognized the similarity between the mountaineers’ struggle and that of a patient.
It goes back to the original question to George Mallory “why do you climb mountains?”
Physical preparation and experience are only part of what gets you to the summit; success is achieved when the emotional desire to summit and to survive are inborn in that person.
Anyone with a serious illness has been there; staring upwards at the summit. Doctors and medications are only part of the cure, the emotional desire to survive and thrive are inborn.
Some time later in life, I realized that I wouldn’t actually climb The Everest, but in life, everyone climbs their own Everest, and succeeding in spite of IBD would be mine.
I continue to be treated for IBD and in the last 10 years I have been dealing with pulmonary complications of IBD. It is quite rare and requires a doctor with a desire to succeed and a willingness to forge a new path. I found Dr.P2 who has managed the chronic lung infections and has assembled a team, willing to take on the challenge. I didn’t know at the time and I don’t think it’s a coincidence, that Dr.P2 is also a mountaineer.
Dr.P2 has his own ambition. He has dreams of climbing the Seven Summits. This March, he leaves to attempt Everest (summit # 6). He is physically prepared, has the experience and mental desire. Now he just needs the conditions.
What is your Everest?
Thank you for your support,
Never, Never, Never Give Up,