I can go the distance

Dustin - Gig Harbor, Washington
Entered on January 14, 2009
Age Group: 18 - 30

I remember thinking. A Mountain? Crevasses? Ice Picks? Rope Lines? Was I really going to do this? Could I really do this? But now as I looked up I could see the top. It was only a small peak, which overlooked the entire state of Washington. Just a little bit more. I looked back over my shoulder to see what I had conquered. Small steps in the snow traced their way, winding back down the mountain. Each step was a step closer towards my goal. Each step a little bit of effort so that I could achieve what I had set out to do. It had been four days since we left the base camp. Four days of climbing up and I was only moments from the top. I had thought it couldn’t be done, but I was proving even myself wrong with every lunge of my body. I slowly, ever so slowly made my way to the top.

Casting my eyes back towards my feet I could feel the burn in my thighs and the blisters on my toes. My hands cracked from the freezing wind. Lips Blistered from the beating sun. Eyes half shut from the long days of climbing and the cold nights sleeping. I had trudged through snow, forded rivers and crossed over mile deep crevasses. Stopping to take off my jacket and down the last of my water, I began to sing the popular Disney song “I can go the distance”, and I thought to myself “you know? You really can. With one last hour of trudging my way to the top I finally stood there, exhausted…tired…out of breath and out of energy. I looked back down at my dad as he too climbed his way onto the peak of the mountain. Looking around I could feel the chills as they flew up and down my spine. I could see other mountains, smaller mountains below. And below these smaller mountains were the clouds. Below these clouds was the rest of the world. For now though, I was now standing where only the gods stand. Seeing only what the gods see. I was now on the top of my world. I had gone the distance. Taking one last look to remember this moment we began our decent down the same mountainside, crossing the same crevasses and fording through the same rivers back to our little car. To only make the long drive back to my warm bed.

There would be other mountains; there would be other days. But today, I had gone the distance.