I personally don’t like the assumptions that come along with being over 50—especially the ones that say I’m too old to be doing all the things I enjoyed when I was younger. I want to stay active for as long as I can, and I don’t believe my age is a limitation.
Two years ago, I underwent a bilateral knee surgery to replace both of my knees. The folks at Methodist Sports Medicine did a great job with giving me my knees back, but it was still up to me to reclaim my hobbies and interests. So I did:
That climb was a New Year’s resolution of mine. We were out in California visiting family, and I just said, “I want to climb a mountain.” Part of the appeal was the physical challenge and the opportunity to push myself athletically. It was also an opportunity to raise money for the Jubilee Village Project with a great team of people.
The other part of it was the symbolic undertaking of a man climbing a mountain, proving to himself that the tough things in life are worth going after. And if they’re tougher because I’m older, then the challenge and reward of redefining the limits is even greater. Sure, everyone thought I was a little crazy. But whether it was because of the way I’m wired or the passion I have about that village in Kenya, I had to do it.
Whether or not it’s actually a physical obstacle, everyone has a mountain. It looms large in the distance, and from our 50+ year-old vantage point, it looks impossible. But it’s not. My climb was tough, but now, I can talk to to people and say, “You could do that, too.” And I know they can, because I did it.