Nov 15, 2009

I climbed the Willis Tower!

I did it! After weeks of fear and hydrating I climbed the steps of the Willis Tower this morning. It was 103 floors, and they say 2,109 steps (although I would dispute that, but not be the one to go back and count it). I finished with what I considered to be an AMAZING time of 32 minutes and 20 seconds. Here's a little rundown of how the climb went for me:

Floor 1: "I can do this."
Floor 5: My legs burn a little and fear sets in.
Floor 10: My legs really burn and I want to quit.
Floor 20: Never mind! I can no longer feel my legs so I keep going!
Floor 35: I feel a little dizzy. I'm a bit disoriented and start yelling random obscenities to the volunteers.
Floor 52: A euphoria sets in as I realize I am more than half way there!
Floor 70: I start to hurt a little and begin to blame various volunteers for "getting me into this mess!"
Floor 75: I start singing Stairway to Heaven. Another climber tells me to pull it together and I forge on.
Floor 80: I feel pretty good! I'm excited to have only 20 more floors. Then the **censored** volunteer yells "Only 23 more floors to go!!!" I want to punch her but instead take the water from her hand, hold back from throwing it into her face and continue up.
Floor 87: I ask the volunteer where the elevators are. He laughed at me. I again wanted to smack him, but instead keep climbing.
Floor 90: For the next 12 floors I get sick of hearing "You're almost there!!" They just kept saying that!! No, it was nice to hear. I felt like I was climbing up in sand at this point!
Floor 100: I hear the cheering crowd at the top!
Floor 103: I MADE IT! 32:20 they tell me!

I enjoyed the view from the top for a while. I stepped out onto the ledge which didn't seem that high anymore considering I just walked up to it. Brian and Ben made the trip with me and waited down in the lobby. It was fun to call Brian and pretend like I was quitting. He thought I was serious at first thinking there was no way I finished that quickly! I did keep a nice steady pace, just a quick walk, no running, never really needing to stop, just a pause here and there. There were those that ran past me in the first 40 floors. Those were the people I was passing at around floor 70! It was truly a case of the Tortoise and the Hare!

I came back down to meet my family. The three of us walked around a bit. Went and got a bite to eat and then home to recuperate. Once home, Ben was in such a good mood! He was laughing and playing and that's when the next miracle happened! I believe I saw Ben's first 2 steps! He was holding onto the bouncy chair thinking about going over to the window sill. He let go, took 2 small steps and grabbed onto the window sill! It was amazing to see! He's putting it all together so quick! Next year, he'll be climbing the Willis Tower with me!

Enjoy the pictures. Some of them are a bit rough, but I'd like to see how you all looked while climbing the tallest building in the country! But seriously, I really feel good. Very proud of myself. It's something I would like to do again and I know Brian wants to do with me. Thanks again to everyone who supported me and helped raise money and awareness for this great cause! I'm going to go stretch now!

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