This afternoon, I completed my OVER THE EDGE rappel for Special Olympics NM at the NM Bank & Trust Building, 320 SW Gold. It took about 15 minutes or so.

Turned out that the building is 16 stories high, not 14 as I originally thought !

I needed a lot of extra preparation to keep myself calm, including visualization and deep breathing -- which I did at home for an hour before going downtown.

When I got there, a former military rappel master - now with the NM State Police - strapped me into a full-body harness, and gave me a pair of gloves and a helmet.

Fortunately, I was able to practice by going off the third story of a multi-level parking garage next door to the building. The scariest part there was stepping over the railing onto a narrow ledge.

Then, when it came time to rappel off the roof, toughest part was NOT stepping over the side of the building backwards and sitting down in my full-body harness.

No, the toughest part was pushing the lever to release the rope. The lever was a bit stiff (for very good reason), and I was doing it with my non-dominant left hand while bringing up more rope with my right hand. About 2/3 of the way down, it was hard to move my hand, and I had to stop frequently to let it rest. AT that point I lost control and my body was gently moved to touch the building!

It took some doing to regain control, but I did it!

Special Olympics will accept contributions to support rappellers for the next 90 days. You are welcome to donate on my personal page, www.firstgiving.com/JaneBlume

Views: 3

Comment by mombat on September 25, 2009 at 9:24am
Good for you!
Comment by Jane S. Blume on September 25, 2009 at 6:03pm
I am pleased to report that Special Olympics NM has so far grossed over $60,000 for their First Annual OVER THE EDGE rappelling fundraiser. They think this is just terrific, considering the fact that they only had three months to pull this major, complex inaugural event together. The community response has been so wonderful - even in this undertain economy - that they believe they will do even better next year -- especially since they will have more time to plan.

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