Duarte documented her climb through her Instagram account, stating the mountain challenged her bodily and mentally
Aretha Duarte, a Brazilian, became the first Black Latin American woman to climb Mount Everest after completing her trek on May 23.
Duarte documented her journey through her Instagram account, where she shared her emotions and the physical and mental challenges she faced, reported USA Today.
“The discomfort is temporary, but the changes this journey represents will be perennial,” she said.
In an Instagram post, she shared that she developed a pulmonary edema, which is commonly caused by high elevation or exposure to toxins.
Duarte expressed her gratitude towards her team, whom she trained with for 12½ months in preparation.
She praised them for their support, performance, and guidance: “Our team is made up of human beings who breathe high performance, even when the air is thin. They open our minds to the impossible, even when routes close before our eyes.”
For Duarte, she pushed through the difficult summit by remembering her search for a purpose in life. She said that to be successful on the mountain, “you need a purpose, not just a reason.”
On her Instagram, she wrote in Portuguese saying: “Since, from the beginning, my “summit” was my home, my mother and my brothers… At the end of the day, it’s about that: surpassing expected results in harmony with the environment in which we find ourselves.”
As of April 2021, 5,788 people have climbed the mountain—the first being Edmund Percival Hillary in 1953.
Nepal’s Himalayan peaks were shut down due to the Covid-19 pandemic, but travelers were allowed to return in November 2020. The reopening included safety measures such as permits and health checks.
Duarte shared with her followers that she would return to Brazil to celebrate the achievement.