Hanging On For Dear Life!

This picture was taken in Los Angeles depicting “Over the Edge” fundraisers who rappelled down the Westin Bonaventure Hotel. It caught my attention immediately as I’m sure it will yours.

I thought about what it must have taken for these individuals to have put their lives at risk. They successfully raised a combined amount in the sum of nearly $200,000.00 dollars. Each participant took an average fifteen minutes for their descent with all proceeds supporting Scout programs in the greater Los Angeles area.

Wow, what a feat! Look at that picture slowly. Can you imagine yourself doing something like that? For most of you thrill seekers I’m quite sure your answer would be yes, no problem. But for most of us— uh, no thank you. The Westin Bonaventure Hotel, besides being located in the heart of the financial district with it’s bright shiny mirrored buildings, boasts an imposing amount of floors, thirty-five to be exact. But there they were, each volunteer ready and willing to make their slow descent.

Now, look at that picture again. Think about the faith it must have taken for these individuals to rely on a system of nothing but ropes and pulleys. They had to trust that their trek to the bottom would be a successful one.

I don’t know about you, but when I saw this woman hanging over the edge as she prepared herself for the long journey down, I was not impressed with her safety gear. A hard hat and blue surgical booties would do nothing to break her fall. I’m thinking about melon hitting the concrete below. Splat! Not pretty, although the booties might make a trendy fashion statement.


The point is, these people were willing do this for someone else, not for themselves. They knew what the risks were going in, yet their concern was for others and how their actions would benefit them.

Since this is my first blog, that picture got me thinking. What is my purpose for writing a blog? Yes I’m petrified, but I’m certainly not dangling on a rope suspended from the rooftop of a high-rise hotel.

My hope is that through my writing I will be able to touch people’s lives and connect with others that will in someway benefit them and not just myself. Just know that as I embark on this new venture, I will be hanging on for dear life while I look out from on top, ready to descend that steep and slippery slope, putting myself out there amongst the unknown galaxy of the universe, otherwise known as the internet, sharing a little splice of our lives.

A big shout out to Kristen Lamb and all my new classmates in My#WANA1011 class and all others that may grace my presence by visiting this post. Take care and make it a great day!

Thank you Everybody!
Karen McFarland

So please let me know what you think. Are any of you out there daredevils? Would you be willing to risk life and limb for others? What is the biggest thing anyone has done for you?
Thank you for your many thoughts and salutations.

57 thoughts on “Hanging On For Dear Life!

  1. Pingback: Happy Third Blogoversary! | Karen McFarland

  2. Natalie Hartford

    Love this post! It’s so true, rapelling down a building and blogging definitely share some similarities – it’s about taking a leap of faith! Good for you for taking the jump. I have no doubt you are going to enjoy the journey and do wonderfully!

    Reply
  3. Kara

    Wow, that would be terrifying! I can’t imagine doing that, but I think there are a lot of things I would try for a good cause:)
    Your blog looks wonderful and what a great topic for your first post. Way to go!

    Reply
  4. Lena Corazon

    Karen, this was a wonderful first post! I definitely understand what you mean about the fear that accompanies blogging, but I commend you for wanting to use your writing to touch people’s lives. I think that’s the most basic thing that we can do as writers and as bloggers, and as a reader, I thoroughly enjoy ‘getting to know’ people through their writing.

    I’m definitely not a daredevil; among my friends, I’m the safe, comfort zone, homebody sort. Still, I’d risk my life for those I love and care about.

    Reply
    1. Karen Post author

      Thank you Lena! No, I’m definitely not a daredevil, although Janelle Madigan says that we bloggers can all be considered intellectual thrill-seekers. I’m with you, I too would be willing to risk my life for someone I loved. Thanks for coming by.

      Reply
  5. colin falconer

    Fantasic photo! I did a 216 metre bungee off the Bloukrans Bridge in South Africa for a dare. Is that what I looked like? Yep. Wish I’d done it for a good cause it would have made a lot more sense. Great post!

    Reply
    1. Karen Post author

      Okay seriously, I think you get the award for the biggest daredevil experience on this post! I’ll bet it was one of the coolest experiences of your life regardless as to whether it made sense of not. Thank you so much Colin for your comment and your visit!

      Reply
  6. Janelle Madigan

    Karen, I’m far from a daredevil. I prefer to live vicariously through fictional characters–my own or those of other authors or my favorite sci-fi TV shows. Congrats on taking the plunge into blogging. It’s a form of intellectual/artistic risk-taking that requires us to be daredevils of a different sort!

    Reply
    1. Karen Post author

      Well spoken Janelle. A form of intellectual risk. I’ve never thought of blogging like that, but now that you mention it, that’s what it’s felt like. I’ve tapped my inner daredevil. Who knew? Thanks for your comment Janelle!

      Reply
  7. Jennette Marie Powell

    LOL I’m a couple days late, but hopefully not too late! Definitely an attention-getting – and well-written first post! I get the heebie-jeebies just looking at that photo! Probably the closest I’ve come is parasailing, but that’s over deep water. 🙂 Keep up the great work!

    Reply
    1. Karen Post author

      Thank you Jennette! You are so not late. Parasailing does sound safer, doesn’t it? I’m with you on that one Jennette. I am so glad you came by!

      Reply
  8. Julie Hedlund

    This is a great first post! We all have fear of the unknown, of what waits for us out there. The people rappelling down a building is an apt metaphor for what it feels like to bare our souls to the world each time we send a blog post out there. The best part is, we don’t have to do it alone, as Kristen has taught us.

    Reply
    1. Karen Post author

      Thank you Julie! Baring Our Souls, yes, that is how it has felt. It’s good to know that we are not alone. I appreciate all the support!

      Reply
  9. Kecia Adams

    Hi Karen! Yes, it’s scary to “put yourself out there” to use the phrase too often heard on the Bachelorette 🙂 but just like for these fundraising rapellers, there is a big reward. My first rapelling experience was with a bunch of Marines. They kept telling me the first step was the hardest, and boy were they right! But after I’d taken that step–shaking the whole time–and flown down to the bottom of that 50 ft tower, I remember looking up, grinning, and shouting “Wow! Can I do that again?”

    Congrats on your first post and here’s to many more!

    Reply
    1. Karen Post author

      Sheesh Kecia, you really did that? Do you know SJ Driscoll? She’s repelled too. You two have a lot of guts! I hope that some of it rubs off on me. I need to get tougher if I’m gonna keep up with you guys! Thanks for coming by.

      Reply
  10. Diane Capri

    Great post and great visual to open! Good job!!! Would I jump off a tall building? Some days, that sounds like a perfectly great idea, but it’s not usually because I’m raising money for charity. I’m more the “let’s get a celebrity on board” type.

    Reply
    1. Karen Post author

      I hope that you enjoyed your dinner, I can only imagine it was spectacular and the building is beautiful. From one SoCal girl to another, thank you for visiting!

      Reply
  11. Ginger Calem

    Great job, Karen!

    How wonderful that the participants braved this extreme feat for others. While I don’t think everyone would scale/rappel skyscrapers, (even though I might if I had the right safety net!) I suspect that most people would do something they don’t really want to do, or have a fear of doing, if it will help someone else and do some good. I believe most humans have the good, core nature. At least I choose to believe this is true! 🙂

    Reply
    1. Karen Post author

      Thank you Ginger! I love your positive attitude! Isn’t it funny that when we do something good for others, we in turn feel good about ourselves. Keep on believing.

      Reply
  12. Pat O'Dea Rosen

    Karen, you’re a natural at this–at least it looks that way. The picture you selected is gripping, and your post is honest. You have what Kristen Lamb calls “the servant’s heart,” and your interest in others is clear.

    Do you think the rapellers are wearing booties to protect the building’s glass walls?

    Reply
    1. Karen Post author

      Yes Pat, you would be right. The Westin Bonaventure Hotel is a group of three tall mirrored buildings, so yes the booties were neccessary. Thank you so much for your very kind comments.

      Reply
  13. Julia Indigo

    Great first post!
    I’m another person with vertigo, just looking at that pic. I’m quite scared of heights, but for some reason I can see myself doing that. No, really.

    Or not.

    Congrats on starting your blogging adventure – it’s fun! For me blogging isn’t such a big deal, but joining up nanowrimo? Which I just did. Uff da.

    My name is my handle there… if anyone wants a writing buddy.

    Reply
    1. Karen Post author

      Yikes! Verigo? You too Julia? Whoops, sorry about that. But I don’t like heights either. That’s why I picked the picture. I thought, if they can do that, I can do this! And congrats on NaNo! Wow, your gonna be one busy person next month Julia. You’re braver than I am. Best wishes on your endeavor!

      Reply
  14. Louise Behiel

    Great blog Karen. Isn’t it wonderful to get it done? I need to do more of them, but starting matters.

    continued success to you
    louise

    Reply
  15. SJ Driscoll

    You did a great job! If you wanted a reaction, you got one from me. Just looking at that picture gives me vertigo. Ugh! Which is funny, since I did rappel once but it was down into a cavern, and the splat factor seemed much less than for a city street. As for which is scarier–blogging is, but at least it can’t kill you. Can it?

    Reply
    1. Karen Post author

      Uh-oh, you too. Marcy Kennedy got vertigo too. Sorry about that. You rappeled? So there’s a little thrill-seeker in you. How cool is that? Thanks for visiting SJ!

      Reply
  16. Marcy Kennedy

    I have an extreme fear of heights, so I get vertigo just looking at the picture. But you make a really great point. a lot of things worth doing in life are frightening and we just have to do them anyway.

    You’re off to a great start 🙂

    Reply
  17. Rachel

    Awesome and fear-inspiring first post! Good work Karen. As a self-described self-interested sort, I can’t fathom what kinds of risks those people take for others. Okay, I might help a little old lady across the street, but that’s where I draw the line!

    Keep up the good work.

    Reply
    1. Karen Post author

      Thank you so much Rachel! Uh, I can’t quite fathom the risk either. But I do like helping others, especially little old ladys.

      Reply
  18. Alicia Street

    Superfab job on this post, Karen! Stunning pic and info mixed with heartfelt content. As far as brave feats, I suppose we’d all do some version for the people we love. The way you tied this together in your post really touches home. See you in class!

    Reply
  19. Jennifer Jensen

    Hi, Karen. I agree, great first post. And don’t knock it – you’re putting yourself out there as much as those rappellers! It’s scary going public. And while I scamper around a roof just fine, you wouldn’t find me going down that hotel unless I had practiced a LOT beforehand!

    Keep up the good work! I”m off to read what Kristen uploaded for us tonight. Cheers!

    Reply
  20. Lynn Kelley

    Wow, this is an excellent post. You’re a natural. I bet Kristen gives you An A+++!

    That photo evoked a sense of panic in me. I guess I just might have a fear of heights. Hmm, interesting!

    I LOVE your analogy. Brilliant! I think your first post is a huge success. WTG, Karen!

    Reply
    1. Karen Post author

      Now you’ve made me blush. Thank you so much Lynn. I had the same sense when I first saw it. I’m such a chicken. I don’t think I could do what they did. See you soon!

      Reply
  21. Coleen Patrick

    Hi Karen! Just looking at that photo I was gripped with fear. No way I thought, but then again if you told me last year I would be blogging, I would think NO WAY!
    I still can’t believe I am putting myself out there like this! Congrats on your courageous steps too!
    And thanks for taking your time to stop by my site too! Appreciate it!

    Reply
    1. Karen Post author

      Thanks so much Coleen for stopping by. Wow. I didn’t know anybody knew I was out there. Yeah, I’m gripped with fear. We’ll all have to Hang On together!

      Reply
  22. Alana

    Great first post, Karen! It’s hard to believe you’ve never written a blog before. I can’t imagine doing what those people did, but I admire their bravery. There’s not much I’d risk my life for besides maybe another person’s life. But we all take chances every day, some bigger than others.

    Reply
    1. Karen Post author

      What a compliment Alana. Thank you so much! Yes, its my very first blog. Scary. But I like you am taking a chance, but perhaps not risking my life like they did, although it kinda feels like it. Thanks for coming by. See you soon!

      Reply

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