Archive for March 24th, 2010

4,3,2,1 ….we have lift off!

Well gang here we go again-the first of what I hope will be many blogs on the road to the top of the world. I am commencing the journey from a Marriott in LA. I arrived this morning and have a ten-hour lay over and since I slept for a mere hour and a half last night I thought this might be a wise place to hang for the day. There is little suffering involved as I plan to order room service repeatedly, shower at least three times, sleep in a bed and just get all those little niceties in before they become fond memories. My count down to lift off really began several weeks ago as I counted out how many nights I had remaining in my own bed -but I am so looking forward with excitement and anticipation that even leaving the luxuries of my everyday world behind is okay by me.

I am ready!

The gummy bears are packed, the kids at the Donald McKay School have all signed “our” flag and made prayer flags for me to hang over my tent at base camp. My wonderful trainer Jeremee made me cry (no not from a punishing workout) but I found saying goodbye to him the hardest of all. Think Dorothy in the Wizard of Oz saying goodbye to the trusted Scarecrow. For the past seven months Jeremee has been the connection to everything that climbing Everest means. As has always been the case for me, it isn’t just about the mountain. Oh no, it is about so very much more.

To all of you who have taken my mission on as if it were your own I want to say thank you. Your constant encouragement, Sheryl joining me on Saturdays for painful long runs when she wasn’t even training for a marathon yet and really would have preferred to play tennis! To Antonella for running 13.9 miles when she was only planning on running 8, okay maybe a 9! And for stopping to do all those ridiculous push-ups, squats and v-ups every few miles in the dirt went way beyond. To Katie for listening to all the craziness fluttering through my brain, no filter there! To all the incredible women at the B+S power hour who kept me going more than they realize, the cake with buttercreme frosting was a pretty ‘sweet’ way to my heart too. You have my word I will be back to workout with you. And to the “Fish Chicks” you continue to lighten my life even though your year has been challenged and difficult’

I could go on and on since the people I have met along the way have made the road to the top of the mountain so much more. As I have always said, this mission belongs to everyone I’m just crazy enough to have to actually do it.

Yup, I’m ready so let’s get ‘er done!!!

Climb on!
Wendy


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About Wendy Booker

In June of 1998, this 55 year old mother of three was diagnosed with relapsing-remitting MS after experiencing balance problems, blurred vision and numbness on her left side. When first diagnosed, Wendy was devastated. But it took very little time for her to transform anguish into inspiration. She immediately turned her hobby of casual running into a continuous pursuit and has now completed nine marathons.

Mountain climbing became the next conquest. Wendy learned about a team of mountain climbers with Multiple Sclerosis who were attempting to climb Mt. McKinley (Denali) in Alaska. With no previous climbing experience, she dedicated a year to hard training and set off with them in 2002. Although weather conditions prohibited the team from completing, Wendy attempted the summit again in 2004 on her own and she succeeded!

The feeling of accomplishment she experienced propelled her next aspiration: to climb the highest mountain on each continent. Just five years later, Wendy Booker has successfully reached the top of six of The Seven Summits – Mt. Kilimanjaro, Mt. McKinley, Mt. Elbrus, Mt. Aconcagua, Mt. Vinson Massif and Mt. Kosciuszko. Mt. Everest, the highest mountain on earth, still awaits for 2010.