When I told everyone that I was going to climb up Ben Nevis, their response was - “You’re going to what!?”
And I don’t blame them. Ben Nevis is said to be one of the most extreme treks, even for the most experienced walkers. So what on Earth was I doing attempting such a difficult challenge?
I’ve always wanted to do something like this, but due to a lack of confidence in the past I always chose to shy away from them. But I told myself “If I don’t go ahead with this, I’ll regret it.”
Many people travel to get away from the daily stress of everyday life. To try and find themselves, particularly after a bad experience or a knockback. That was why I felt compelled to do it to raise money for the charity Muslim Hands.
On the day of the climb, I realised that I had an opportunity now to back out. Say I was sick, ill, dying. Anything.
However, I didn’t fancy waiting around in the youth hostel for eight hours. There wasn’t much food in the fridge and the wi-fi was horrendous.
The terrain on Ben Nevis is mostly loose, sharp rock. I ended up falling behind the rest of the group, beacause I was not as experienced. I almost gave up getting to the top, but thought “What’s the point of coming out here if you don’t get to the top?”
Going down Ben Nevis, I felt my legs go numb, and I was struggling to walk. I slipped on one of the rocks and fell quite close to the edge of the cliff.
I’ll admit, I did fear for my life at times. I hobbled along, fighting back tears and continuously reminding myself of what my Dad had told me.
“If you’re struggling, think of that Syrian boy who was found under the rubble and remember why you’re doing this” he said. And that really was what kept me going.
I was the last one to come back- taking 15 hours to complete the whole trek. I consolled my terrified mother on the phone, and then sat in the bus. I was sore and tired as anything, but I didn’t care one bit.
The day after I came back, I cried quietly to myself. Not because I was sad, but because I was so overwhelmed.
This trip did more for me than just raise money. It helped me find myself, and gave me my confidence back.
When I came home, my Dad said “You’re going to do this again, aren’t you?”
“I might give Snowdon a go.” I said “Just let me forget the pain of this one first.”