Having cancer is hard. Cancer treatment is hard. It takes a long time and it consumes your life in the process. There are days — perhaps many days — when you think you just can’t go on. You can’t do it anymore. You can’t take another step. But somewhere, somehow, you find the strength to get through one more day. Because you have to. Because no one can do it for you. And for everyone, that strength, that inspiration will be different. Whatever works for you, use it, lean on it, hold it close.
For me, silly as it might sound, it has been remembering that I once climbed Longs Peak. At the time, in 1979, and through all the years since, I’ve said it was the hardest thing I ever did. By myself. One step at a time. All the way to the 14,255-foot summit. And back down again.
So when the cancer treatments are getting me down, when I’m tired and fed up and feel — or fear — I can’t go on, I remind myself: “14,255.” A personal mantra.
I climbed that mountain. I can and will climb this one.