when misfortune changes your position

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The avalanche was a flash of snow.

Jakubaszek | Getty Images

A beautiful but extremely dangerous explosion formed by the rock and ice deposits of the walls of Nanga Parbat the mountain of destiny, the ninth highest in the world and where the German mountaineer, Reinhold Messner lost much more than seven of the frozen toes.

Because on that day in 1970 the gods of the… “Naked Mountain” in Pakistan let him and his brother Günther reach the top, but on the way back they punished them. They were out of food and water, and Reinhold’s younger brother panicked as he made his way back to base camp.

Then came the avalanche.

The flash of snow.
The cold explosion.
Dead.

Reinhold had moved forward and was trying to find a way down. Weak and disoriented, Günther was left behind. devastated.

The avalanche took him, devoured him, and forever marked the life of the man who would become one of the greatest mountaineers in history.

Reinhold spent six days on the mountain, searching in vain for his brother, until he was rescued. He was later pointed out by other German mountaineers who accompanied him on the expedition in which he left Günther to his fate. His feet suffered severe frostbite and seven of his toes had to be amputated, forever changing the way he walked.

Reinhold Messner recovered from the accident, but as is often the case with accidents, he had scars. He wasn’t the same anymore. His injured feet prevented him from continuing to climb rock faces like Nanga Parbat’s.

But he never stopped climbing

Messner set out for various challenges and found routes that could withstand his injured footprint. The hero of the mountain would not be defeated, even if his path were changed.

In the 1970s, Messner searched for peaks to conquer all over the world: Iran, Nepal, Pakistan, New Guinea and East Africa. He tried in vain to climb the mountain his brother had devoured years earlier, but failed due to avalanches that seemed determined to remind him of his misfortune.

In 1975 he tamed Gasherbrum I (located on the Pakistan-China border), with its 8,080 meters altitude, without oxygen. He was the first to do it. He then returned to Nanga Parbat and climbed it on his own, charting a new route that no one else has been able to follow until now. After that achievement he climbed K2 and finally Everest without oxygen

By 1986 Reinhold Messner had conquered the 14 highest peaks in the world and had become a living legend of mountaineering.

Years ago, the accident that killed his brother changed the course of his existence: mutilating his footsteps and forcing him to think differently. Messner’s greatness lies in the fact that, despite the pain, despite the stumps in his feet and the wounds in his memory, he never stopped moving forward.

He adapted to the tragedy and didn’t let it stop him.

That’s the great thing lesson from the mountaineer † Because there will be dangerous ascents and descents. Dark days and eternal nights, ravaged by lightning. Falls where we hurt ourselves and possibly lose part of our fingers.

Doubt for months. Of fear.

Moments when we will swear to each other in a soft voice that we can go no further. That it’s time to kneel down, close our eyes, let the darkness engulf us. To report

But we won’t.

Because the strength of the mountaineer is in each of us. It’s the little flash that calls to us, that screams at us every morning. For despite the fear, despite the impossible lurking on the horizon, it is always time to keep walking towards conquer another mountain


This post when misfortune changes your position was original published at “https://www.entrepreneur.com/article/424755”

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