The five-time Pro Bowl defensive tackle played for the Philadelphia Eagles last season.
By Nicole L. Cicogna Nearly three years ago, I made a very difficult life decision to walk away from a pending wedding. I
Although energized when we finally reached the summit, I appreciate the experience so much more now as I reflect back. The photos and videos are reminders of what I accomplished that I didn't fully recognize during the trek itself.
Darkness brings out fears in many of us. Hiking to the summit of Mt. Kilimanjaro through the night brought out my fears, and made the challenge even harder. Just hiking to the highest point in Africa is not an easy feat. Add lack of sleep, cold and darkness, and I was doubtful I could make it!
I opened my mouth to confirm, and then shut it wordlessly, my hands nervously twitching over the heap of gear we were packing away. Pants. Where were my pants? Unbelievable. I was climbing Mount Kilimanjaro in less than 12 hours, and had forgotten my pants in Los Angeles.
"Are you narcoleptic?" Corny peered down at me from the Land Rover's open roof, amused. I snapped out of my haze, halting a streak of sleepy head-bobbing that would make Tony Abbott proud. Less than three days in Tanzania and I was already resembling an extra in The Walking Dead.
I have never been one to shy away from a challenge. Whether taking the train into New York City by myself as a young teen to attend dance classes with Alvin Ailey, or deciding at the age of 40 to abandon a career in the arts to get involved in the HIV/AIDS crisis, or, just ten years ago, taking the helm of one of the oldest NGOs in the U.S.
Hikers typically work under the premise of leaving no trace, but I wanted to drop my metaphorical rubbish all over the mountain and let it float away in the wind. But maybe it wouldn't work that way. Maybe my weight would always be part of my story.
One of my wife's dearest friends, Cidalia Luis-Akbar, is about to do a crazy, amazing thing: In two weeks she and her sister Natalia Luis are climbing Mount Kilimanjaro to raise $500,000 for Children's Hospital in Washington DC, and to mark their own victories over personal struggles.