My husband and son went on a trip of a lifetime this summer. Together, they conquered a mountain that haunted them for eleven years.
See, eleven years ago, Grayson was eight and already dreaming of summits. Tom promised a climb up Mt. Elbert; though a Class One hike suitable for a beginner, it is the highest peak in Colorado and a famous "Fourteener." It would be their great adventure.
The climb went smoothly up until they got within sight of the summit. Suddenly, Gray was overcome with severe altitude sickness and could not take one more step. He doubled over and held his head, crying in pain. Alarmed, Tom picked him up and carried him four miles down to their camp, half running as he went, so he could recover. Summiting would not happen for them.
The years passed by, and the regret over failing to reach the top lingered. The summers were full of other activities, and somehow the two never could make it back for another stab at it. Until this year.
Now 19 and taller than his dad, Grayson is a young man with a streak of determination. He and Tom put a plan together that would take them not only up Elbert, but nearby Mt. Massive as well.
This time, it was Tom who struggled. And in a fitting turn, it was his son who helped him to the top. They made it. The summit held special meaning as father and son took in the incredible views and savored the victory.
Grayson made a beautiful video of their climb. It is as much a tribute to their journey, as to reaching the top...and I love that. Turn up the music, hit "full screen," and enjoy. Tom's speech at 7:28 is priceless.
Men and mountains.
Somehow I think they are purposed for each other. Maybe it's the difficulty, or the challenge, or the quest, but I guess there is something in men that needs to battle hard things. I'm so proud of these men who pressed on - to climb their own mountains and fight through hardship to victory.
Here is the Mt. Massive climb. The footage is epic, and the journey is sweetness.
Do you have boys? Sometimes it's hard for moms to step aside and let them fight their battles. But giving them space (and faith) to become men is an important part of them taking on their roles in life. Let fathers and sons do some special things together without asking if they have kleenex or hand santizer. Let them go, mama.
They have mountains to climb.