What a night! Last night we went to Sherrie Gould's house for pizza and beer (well, sparkling water). She's the Nurse Practitioner from Scripps who has made all of this happen from the start -- well before they did Kilimanjaro last year.
I met other trekkers for the first time. Words can't describe how wonderful they are. Brave souls, every last one of them. Smart, funny, interesting -- and many of them have Parkinson's. In a weird way it was comforting to be among "my peeps". Comparing symptoms, medications, and other treatments. I know that may sound maudlin but it really wasn't. The trekkers who don't have Parkinson's -- including my dear friend, Rick Whipple -- are there to support the cause (summit4stemcell.com) and their friends or loved ones who are taking the chance.
The highlight of the night: Jeff (I know his last name begins with an S), a film maker with close ties to the group, has made several short films about the patients who are in the S4S pilot program. I cried! So moving. These eight brave people are paving the way for what we hope will be a long-term viable treatment for Parkinson's. And I met many of them last night!
Most exciting of all: Jeff is going with us to Everest Base Camp and
will be filming it as a documentary! He's arranging everything with
cameramen, sound people, equipment suppliers, etc. Stand by. This is
going to be an incredible journey!
Please go to summit4stemcell.com and take a look at this wonderful film (10 minutes). Please consider donating to the cause. We need a total of $2.5 million to get this project to the FDA to begin the path to commercial use. I WANT IT! I WANT TO CURB THIS DAMN DISEASE. I want to live my life knowing that I'll be standing in 10 years. That I'll remember names and places. That I can continue to push beyond my limits and achieve amazing things.