I have checked the calendar and there are only 9 more days until the culmination of my year long journey. The training has been endured and injuries, sickness, mental fatigue have all been overcome. The only thing left is to get to Texas and kick some Tough Mudder ass!
Since I am so close now to having this journey completed, I thought I would take a moment to recall a few personal motivations and inspirations that have helped me through my training. If you recall, I have spoken already about the inspiration I have received from Steve Gleason and his battle with ALS. I have shared the story of Lt. Nick Vogt who lost his legs in Afghanistan and would not be alive today without the help of so many people around him but also the perseverance and hope that resides inside of him. These 2 men, along with all those soldiers who serve and sacrifice for me and my family, have helped me along this journey. They have all made a choice to be better, be stronger, and to fight through every obstacle in their way. For this I am proud of all of them and thank them for all they do.
My motivation and inspiration does not stop there however. As the end of my journey draws near, I am humbled by another journey that has recently ended. The journey I speak of is that of a child, Tripp Roth. A lot of you have heard the story of Tripp and may even know his family. For those of you who don’t, this story is one of love and strength that cannot be measured.
Tripp, his mom Courtney, and their family and friends have endured a journey that has touched countless hearts across the world. When Tripp was born, he was diagnosed with Junctional Epidermolysis Bullosa which is a rare genetic skin disease. This disease causes blisters to form with any friction on the skin or mucous membranes. Tripp was not supposed to live past his first year. However, Tripp was a fighter. His journey ended on January 14 of this year, 32 months after he was born.
Through all of this, his mother, Courtney, was always there. I knew Courtney and her family when we were kids as we grew up in the same small town. Courtney is only 25 years old and has already put to rest her own child. I cannot begin to fathom what she has endured over the last 32 months and what she will continue to endure the rest of her life. Courtney and Tripp have inspired me, along with countless others, with their incredible strength. I have immense respect for the both of them and I will continue to pray for her as she continues her life without her precious child. You can read about Courtney and Tripp on her blog, “EB”ing a Mommy.
As I navigate the Tough Mudder course next weekend, I will have the thought of all of these inspirational people in my heart and in my mind. My challenge, unlike theirs, is only 12 miles long with 29 obstacles. This is not tough. This is a walk in the park considering the toughness they have exhibited.
This will be my last journal entry before the Tough Mudder next week. I will provide a journal entry covering my Tough Mudder experience with as many pictures as I can after the event. It has been my pleasure providing my experience with you over the past year and I hope I provided at least a small amount of motivation and inspiration throughout the year. I also hope to join any of you that decide you want better.
Keep Movin’ friends…it’s the only way to get where you’re going!