It was one month earlier and my daughter had just fallen ONE move short of finishing her first outdoor 5.8 (difficulty rating) climb. Despite numerous tries, she couldn't quite top it. My 12yo "girlie girl" wore the skin on her fingers raw, scratched up her arms, and sliced open her leg in the process. Hours later, on the car ride home, I saw tears in her eyes and asked if she needed me to get her something for pain.
She just said, "I was soooo close." She closed her eyes and we finished the next hour of the ride in silence.
We have a monthly company-wide meeting at one of the brands I serve. There are certain phrases they use internally as motivation, and the president wanted a video intro that highlight one of those phrases to open his next presentation. He asked me to make a climbing video because his theme was going to be "Lock-In". I love climbing so I didn't need my arm twisted to get it done.
My daughter was excited because she was getting to help shoot video. She actually shot a good bit of the footage that we used in the final video which you can see here.
When we were done filming she asked if she could tie in and give the route I climbed for the video a go.
It's a 5.8.
In the picture below, she's just past the crux (most difficult part of the route) on the way to the top. I'm not sure which of us shouted louder, but I bet you could hear us both a mile away when she slapped the anchors and finished her first outdoor 5.8!
Here's the thing. I'm not as proud of her finishing a 5.8 as I am of how hard she worked toward it. She's been working out and climbing in the gym with laser focus to get redemption on real rock.
After 20 min or so of silence on the way home, she looked at me and said, "I'm ready to start working toward 5.9 in the gym." With a grin as wide as the Grand Canyon I said, "I can't wait to start."