I cannot believe it is finally here, it’s the night before I go away to do something I have dreamed about for so very long. I’m nervous… I’m excited… I’m also writing this post on the train on my way to the hotel at Heathrow on my phone so forgive me if it is a little basic.
It’s crazy to think I signed up to the trip a whole year ago and now it’s pretty much here.
Today I’ve been feeling a bit anxious about whether I have everything I need but I have spent the last few months getting my kit together so I definitely do. In January when I got a parcel from QMKit I very much felt like Bear Grylls I could survive in the wild now with all the kit I have! Thanks so much Martin and Matt at QMKit you were super generous.
Today somehow I managed to pack it all within the 15kg allowance we have been set. I’ve double and triple checked my list. The contact lenses are all packed up in a merino wool sock followed by a flask, I’m hoping that will do the trick. I’m still unsure about the camera and how long it will last I have back – up batteries but didn’t get the chance to get a solar charger so once it’s gone that’s it. But that will be no bad thing as I’ll be soaking it all in.
The last few weeks have been crazy and humbling. Crazy because I’ve been typical me and put a thousand things on my plate (Ok not a thousand but it felt like it!). The literature review was handed in today, did my scary presentation on the phone to NY yesterday but my stress levels went through the roof when it came to doing a bake sale at work this week. I do not bake, I was never good at chemistry and baking to me is like an experiment, needless to say apart from a false sense of security with a successful first bake it was not plain sailing. At one point my little sis Philippa managed to talk me down from throwing my curdled ginger cupcake mix across the kitchen, thanks pipster that would’ve involved a big tidy – up! Stress aside the bake sale eventually went really well and we raised over £200 for Orwell Mencap thanks to all of you who helped.
Then feeling humbled … I really cannot believe the generosity of those who have donated, my target has been totally smashed and it’s now around £4000 raised! Wow wow wow! Your support has been amazing and much appreciated.
I really cannot believe it’s now here and I go tomorrow. It’s been one heck of a ride so far, this whole process has been quite a challenge not least with writing this blog. Firstly because of my technical inabilities with computers. Secondly because I’ve opened up to the world about the deepest darkest time that happened to me and my family. I’ve certainly triggered lots of emotions for mine, Natalia and Mandy’s families. Don’t get me wrong I love talking about Abby but it’s kinda tricky bringing it up sometimes, more so because I’m worried about the other person feeling awkward. So this I suppose has also been somewhat of a therapeutic journey and I’ve loved becoming part of this community once more.
So before I continue on a perpetual waffle I want to just say a huge thank you to all of you supporting this challenge and Orwell Mencap. Thank you to Jack Lynch for getting me Arctic Fit and to QMKit for donating me many essentials. And finally but no means least than you to Margaret & Alan Gibson, Janice & Tony Bruce, your families, and my wonderful family the Ramsey mafia for not only putting up with my crazy ideas and all of your incredible fundraising, but also for letting me do this challenge in honour of the wonderful Abby, Natalia & Mandy. I have a picture of them all in my top left hand pocket so they will be with me all the way!
Arctic Circle……bring it on!
All photos and content © Danielle Ramsey and Arctic 4 Abby, 2015, except where stated.