Crazy that I'm just getting around to writing about this. It's been a whirlwind of a month but I'm finally back at Mizzfit headquarters blogging about all my exciting Fall adventures. Rappelling off a 20-story building is definitely one of them.
I'll start here... There's an amazing event called Over The Edge that happens nationwide through the Special Olympics, and I decided to do it in St. Louis where I grew up. Even though I live in New York City, I will always be a Midwestern girl at heart. So, when the Special Olympics of Missouri asked me to work with them, I said hell yes! Read about in my announcement post here.
Oh...but wait...I'm scared of heights. Will that be a problem?
Not when a team like this has your back ;)
What follows are my favorite photographs from the day I conquered my fears with the Special Olympics of Missouri. In addition to raising awareness for this extraordinary event, I raised money to support it. To thank everyone who donated I began writing their names in permanent marker on my arm (so I could read them off while rappeling and live-streaming). By the time I descended down the building, I had so many names on my arm, it was useless trying to shout them all out. Plus, I was focused on NOT fainting.
It was a thrilling experience. By far, the most terrying thing I've ever done in my life! But I'm so glad I willed myself to do it. Special Olympics is an incredible organization that brings together so many CARING, GIVING & PASSIONATE PEOPLE with the goal of excelling past obstacles and empowering athletes of all kinds.
My rappeling adventure was entirely live-streamed on Meerkat...with the mere exception of the actual rappel. My GoPro's connection to the Hyatt Regency's wifi cut out right as I went over the edge. Kinda funny, everyone who was watching on Meerkat thought I died because the stream suddenly blacked out after I said I don't think I can look down! It's all captured HERE! And, follow me on Meerkat while you're at it.
That's me interviewing the woman who prepared and secured my harness.
This guy helped me out with my helmet. I had to redo my braid like 3 times to get the fit right.
And then finally, we were up on the roof!
On the rootop, I was taught in under 5 minutes how to use the ropes on a weird mock rappel suspension thingy. Maybe I should've paid more attention because I kind of sucked at it when I finally went down. I was just reeaaaally nervous so it was hard to retain much.
When it was time for me to head over to the rappelling station on the very edge of the Hyatt's rooftop, I thought this is my chance to reconsider and peace out down the stairs, the safe way. But I couldn't upset my Meerkat audience and everyone else below waiting for me to come down.
What the heck did I get myself into???
Pretty much dying at this point. But I might die so what the heck.
Literally on the edge!
And it's go time...
At the bottom, I was hugged and congratulated by Lindsay, an expert rappeler who assured me my 2nd time wouldn't be as scary. Umm, who says I'm ever doing this again? She gave me one of those looks, like c'mon, you can do it. These Special Olympics athletes--I tell ya--they're pretty amazing!
To get involved in Over The Edge, simply google your city and "over the edge". I found that this is the easiest way to locate the info the fastest. Over The Edge is a Special Olympics fundraising event that happens in many cities across the USA, but each one is unique to its city and state org. To sign up for Over The Edge 2016 in Missouri, click here! Feel free to leave comments with any questions.
All photographs taken by the amazing St. Louis based photographer, Ryan Archer.