As I prepare to undertake the challenge of hiking to the summit of Kilimanjaro in January - which rises 19,340 feet (5985 metres) above sea level - my biggest fear is how my body will acclimatize to the altitude. It's not really something I can prepare for, other than taking some necessary precautions (like climbing slowly, taking the longest route to the summit and having some trusty meds on hand).
With that said, someone told my SIL recently to tell me that if I start to feel sick I need to STOP because otherwise I might DIE. My goodness. Uh... What am I getting myself into? I was happy to be able to respond that the owner of the company that we'll be climbing with is actually joining my group for the treck and that after hearing some recent "climbing" stories, I know that one of the most important things is going to be to swallow my pride and admit if I'm not feeling well so that I can get help if I need it and increase my chances of making it the summit should something go wrong. This is me staying positive and hoping that NOTHING goes wrong... and that I am just naturally made to be in the mountains... at high altitudes.
But, while the chances of me actually dying during this little adventure are very small - they`re still probably a little bit higher than if I stayed home and lived my regular life in January 2011.
It's the kick in the butt that Brandon and I need to finally take the time to do our will. Ugh. What a chore... what crappy conversations... "so if we both die... then who gets the girls?" being at the top of that list of crappy conversations that we need to have.
For some people I'm sure that it's an obvious decision. It isn't for us... which is a large part of the reason our will isn't done (pretend it won't happen and it won't?--- probably about as safe as the rhythm method of birth control --- I should know, I have 2 beautiful results of using that method!)
There are so many things to think about...
- Should they go to extended family? Should they go to friends?
- Do they already have kids? Would an extra 2 be a ridiculous thing to ask?
- Would they be able to love our kids as their own?
- Would they share our faith and our values with our girls - whether they are their own or not?
- Does it matter if it means a big "move" for the girls?
- Will they still see extended family if we don't actually choose a family member?
...And all of the questions are almost fictional because the chances of Brandon and I BOTH dying before the girls are 18 (and hopefully long after that) are not very high (at least according to our life insurance policy the risks aren't that high!).
So this is what`s on my mind this week (along with fundraising, work projects, meal planning, laundry, home reno lists, and every other "to do" list I've got going up there).
I don't think I'm going to die in January - but I guess I need to plan for the possibility? How morbid is that?!