I actually slept last night...despite my rambunctious brain and excitement levels comparable to that of a 12 year old girl at a One Direction Concert....seriously...off the freakin charts!!! But I got about 5 hours of sleep...
Got up this morning...Aunt Charlotte made a healthy veggie omelet...had a little extra jolt of caffeine and some toasted sprouted bread...we left after picking up the rental and headed to Manhattan Beach!!! My heart was pumping and I was so ready to make this mini-goal/dream happen.
We hit some serious traffic about 30 minutes into our drive and I began to have a small panic attack...I REALLY did not want to miss this opportunity because of traffic....ain't happenin'
Kerri reserved a time for us to climb the Dune from 11:00 to 12:00...little did I know then that I would use every single minute of that time to hoist myself up that big ass hill (seriously....I had to say ass...My apologies).
Kerri arrived and honestly...I felt like I was seeing an old friend...not literally old...but the kind of friend that it just warms your heart to see again after a long time!!! Now I know that I have written quite a bit about what an amazing human being she is....but honestly as I a sit here with tears streaming down my face, I can tell you that she is such an angel...a precious, precious human being....and that my heart is changed for the better for having had this one priceless hour walking in boiling sand up a giant hill...I would do it again tomorrow!!!
As she sat with me in the sand as I tried desperately to move to the top...we just talked...I told her a bit about how this Journey started..I got to tell her about playing sand volleyball for the first time..we talked about life... I told her what how God is changing my life everyday of this Journey...I did some talkin!!! That should be no big surprise to anyone!!! I loved every single minute!!!! My only regret is that I did not let her hardly get a word in edgewise!!!
She brought me an amazing pic of her and Misty....with a sweet little note...and she gave me some really cool Oakley Sunglasses! She signed 2 volleyballs for our Silent Auction!!!
AND as a bonus...I got to meet her precious kids and really sweet husband. I think Casey was a bit worried about her overextending and walking in that blazing hot sand before a match in Staad, SUI...rightfully so!!!!
Joey (her oldest) and I had a brief but very sweet conversation about baseball AND Bugs...his favorite! He had handily captured some live bugs and we discussed how they like to crawl all over each other and we even discussed bug poop!!!! Perfect conversation...Sundance gave me a smile...but was a little more reserved! Precious boy...very handsome! And of course...I got to meet Scout...looks just like her Mama!!! She even gave me a smile!! Again...I loved every minute of it!!! A precious family!!! Meeting them...just one more blessing for the day!!!!
So...lets talk Dune....When I got there...Kerri had a plan...to walk up a portion of the dune a couple of times and then head to the top a couple to times...I HAD NO IDEA....Trust me when I tell you...that all of my climbing hills...lifting weights and elliptical workouts..did not fully prepare me for The DUNE!!
Seriously....I got up partially...winded, and a little freaked out..I gathered myself and managed over the course of the next 40+ minutes to climb...slowly but surely. The part of my brain that fancies that my athletic self is still in this body somewhere...had to swallow its pride and just accept that if I made it up this hill once...THAT would be the accomplishment. Once I accepted that...I just kept taking it step by step. Kerri went and got me water...poured cool water on my neck, borrowed these nifty sock things that ultimately made it possible to finish because the sand was almost unbearably hot and literally held my hand!!!
The ladies that loaned us the socks....even gave me a water bottle with YOU DID IT written on it...I don't know their names...but they too...blessed this day!!!
My Sweet Tone Tone and Aunt Charlotte were there cheering me on...amazing!!!! Another blessing!
Finally, we made it to the top...Kerri said...Let's do our Rocky pose...(Lindsey I knew you would love that)...We hugged...I made it...I did not puke...or cry...though I did think about both!
I got to look this Amazing woman..inspiration... in the eyes and tell her what she has meant to me and this Journey. I got to meet her precious family...I got to just talk with her...absolutely priceless. Most importantly, I made a friend...a friend that I would walk through blazing hot sand for...LOL!!!! Whether or not she signed up for this...As far as I am concerned we are friends...for the rest of my life!
So Kerri Walsh Jennings...I can't wait to see you win another Gold Medal...I actually hope I am in the front row when you do!!! Don't let anybody tell you are old!! So NOT TRUE!! YOU ARE A SUPERSTAR!!
So here are some pics...I will be talking about this more...you can count on it!!!! Thank you for all of you that sent me messages...encouragement, love galore...I have some exceptional friends and family!!! YOU ALL FILL MY HEART WITH JOY!!!
I CONQUERED THE DUNE...With a Lot of Help from my Friends!