I will be leaving for GA in less than a week!!!
I just feel the need to post about how incredibly lucky I am. I have an awesome family, friends, and boyfriend who are all so supportive of me. Ok, well my Mom and my Boss are a little over supportive of me coming home early....but supportive none the less.
All of this support doesn't mean the planning of this great adventure has been easy, but it has absolutely helped! I have been overwhelmed lately of the friends I have in my life.
Kay and Jose: You guys are going to be my lifeline! Thank you so much for being my ground support for all my drop boxes, and other odds and ends.
Michelle: Dog sitting is one thing, but for 6 months?!?! Your generosity is overwhelming!
Buffy, Renata, Vanessa, Jose, Cory, Elisa, Heidi: The amazing back-up dog sitters. (I am beginning to thing that Maggie has more friends than I do....and I just come with the package) lol
Kelly, Tracy, Paula, Joanie, Denise, Leslie, JoAnne: you are the best work moms a girl could ask for! And all my other great friends at "the Ranch" who are rooting for me!! Kelly, thanks for arranging my happy trails going away dinner! I will miss everyone, and will definitely miss the babies!
All my Adventure Group friends...there are so many to name, but Matt and Leslie....Thank you so much for planning a bonfire celebration this weekend. Without you, there isn't a way I could have the time to see all the people I want to before I leave. Thanks for offering your home and yard to bring all my favorite people together.
Mike B: You are a thorn in my side...hahaha...but you are the one who got me excited about backpacking in the first place. Thank you! And if I get eaten by a bear, I want everyone to know who to blame. hahahaha
Craig and Betty: Thanks for training with me on the AT to prepare. We definitely saw the good, the bad, and the ugly in each other on that trip, and I can't stop laughing my arse off when I think about it. :-)
Elisa: Thanks for the wet training! lol Also, an enormous thanks for driving me to GA, hiking the first week with me, and then driving away quickly when the time comes, so I don't try to drive back with you. hehehe. You are truly a rare gem to find! I can't wait for our week together on the trail!
Appalachian Trail Class of 2012: We have been talking for over a year now, getting to know each other. Now we get to finally meet and hike this adventure together. Priceless!
Mom, Dad, Jamie, Scott, Shane: I love you! You are the greatest family ever!
Chelsea, Erin, Debbie, Marianne, Jenn, Olga, Buffy: My BFF's from afar and close by...I will miss you!
Pam and Vicki: I am claiming you as my other mothers. Thanks for the support! (even though I am sure you think I am absolutely nuts)
Chris: Thank you for being the amazing man you are. I am so
fortunate to have you in my life, and will absolutely miss you just as
much as Maggie! :-) Seriously, my boyfriend has been nothing but
supportive of this trip. I miss him already. Looking forward to the
short meetups we have planned along the way.
I would also like to thank brother and sister Duke for the lesson they taught me the last time they visited, using Thomas S. Monsons' talk. I would like to share those words of encouragement now.
Have a positive Attitude
Believe in Yourself
"Don't limit yourself and don't let others convince you that you are limited in what you can do. Believe in yourself and then live so as to reach your possibilities."
Face Challenges with Courage
"Whatever you do, you need courage. Whatever course you decide on, there is always someone to tell you that you are wrong"
"There will be times when you will be frightened and discouraged. You may feel that you are defeated. The odds of obtaining victory may appear overwhelming. At times you may feel like David trying to fight Goliath. But remember--David did win!"
"Have the determination to make the effort, the single-mindedness to work toward a worthy goal, and the courage not only to face the challenges that inevitably come but also to make a second effort, should such be required. Sometimes courage is the little voice at the end of the day that says, 'Ill try again tomorrow.'"
I have a lot to do to be ready in 6 days, 7 hours, and some minutes. I hope to post at least once more before that time ticks out. For right now, my house looks like a tornado picked up a sporting goods store and dropped it in my living room. Today was my last day at work. Now the real work begins!
I read recently that the total amount of climbing for the AT is about 496,000 feet. Mt Everest is 29,000 feet. So, hiking the AT is roughly the equivalent of
climbing Mt Everest 16 times. And according to the guys at the NOC,
there are 865 summits on the AT.
Roughly 27% of those who set out to hike the entire Appalachian Trail finish their goal. 25% of those are women. I have a positive attitude, I believe in myself, and I am going to face those challenges with courage.