Photo by Phil “Tank” Wu
My IBD Adventure was an experience of a life time. I never dreamed that I could accomplish something like this. I had never climbed a mountain before Rob contacted me, and then here I was saddling up for the experience of climbing to the tallest mountain in the world. I had no idea going into this that it would change my life so dramatically.
When I met the 10, 6 trekkers and 3 climbers in Kathmandu, I had no idea what to expect. Will this trip be fun? Will I like everyone? The answer was a resounding yes! I found friendship with all the trekkers and climbers on the IBD Adventure. As the trip went on I came to know everyone on a personal level. I learned that Bob wanted to retire but just needed a push, I learned that Carly loved cake and momo’s going into this trip but hates them now, but has found a new love: ra ra noodle soup. I found that Clinton is a true trooper when he is sick, and never will give up, and can’t wait to get home to watch Avatar. Oh Clinton, by the way, did Betsy every get rescued? I learned on my adventure that Paul is a true leader and an even better super baje, who genuinely cares for the safety and security of all those around him. Thank you Paul for all you have done. I found that Phil is the “Tank,” enough said, and runs on spam fuel.
Photo by Phil “Tank” Wu
Now the three climbers I knew they had the strength and drive to go all the way to the top. Never have I ever had a hard time keeping up with walking with anyone till I met John F, Darrel, and Rob. These men have more strength in their pinky than I will ever dream of having in a lifetime. The good Lord truly gave them talents and climbing and mountaineering is definitely one of them. When I think about how these mens’ dreams have been fulfilled with their seven summits campaign I just smile knowing that this trip truly opened my eyes to know that with hard work and determination like these three men everything is possible. Congratulations guys. Your hard work and determination paid off. I can’t wait to join you all on a new adventure.
You can’t forget John O. I spoke of talents and gifts, this man has them all in the world of websites, computers, pictures and stories. I am so thankful for John’s updates and stories and blogs throughout this whole trip. The hard work that went into this is outstanding. I am proud to say that I have met you, known you and befriended you along the way. Keep up the good work John, and thanks again.
When I arrived home I knew that I was a changed man from this trip. Not only had I lost 35lbs and am now in the best shape of my life, but I came back with a new take on life. The experiences I took down with me from the mountain truly shaped me in ways I never dreamed of. It had been a difficult couple of years for me going into this trip. I had lost some of the adventure that used to drive me for life before this trip. The IBD Adventure trip to Everest filled my cup and made it over flow. I came back with a drive for life and a drive for education.
IBD Adventures gave me the want to spread the word about the importance of education in the world of IBD, Ostomies, Crohn’s, and Colitis. It showed me that all things are possible no matter what physical ailment you have upon you. This trip showed me that you have to have the want and the drive to succeed in the things you start. Live life to its fullest, I know I will from now on. There is hunger for life living in me again, and I can’t wait for my next trek with IBD Adventures. Thank you again Rob for this amazing adventure, and I hope that in the near future we can stand side by side on another amazing IBD Adventure.
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Rob Hill: “When I learned that Tony would be joining the IBD Adventures Everest Base Camp Trek I was thrilled. Tony was the 2009 Great Comebacks™ Award winner. It speaks volumes of his character that ConvaTec was so eager to make it possible for Tony to join us in Nepal. We’ve known one another through the Youth Rally for several years – Tony volunteers a week each summer helping children and young adults adjust to living with an ostomy – his insights and outlook on life fits so well with mine. He’s an inspiration to everyone around him. While he speaks so highly of strength in others, I know from speaking with every climber and trekker on this expedition, Tony’s strength provided many moments of laughter, emotion, courage and will. This trip wouldn’t have been as successful as it was if Tony hadn’t been such an important part of the team.”