Going Over the Edge for Special Olympics

Posted by Brooke Knight on Nov 14, 2016 10:18:23 AM

Joe&Brooke.pngBucket lists can help provide direction and drive to accomplish goals that may seem impossible.  Recently, I had an incredible adventure where impossible became possible – but I can tell you with great fervor it was certainly not on my bucket list. I have always had a fear of heights, and to be more specific, the voluntarily descending from great heights has always been on my list of impossibilities! You will never catch me on a ladder or signing up for a rock-climbing class, let alone willingly agreeing to repel down a 345-foot building in downtown Des Moines. 

However, at a recent lunch and learn at our West Des Moines headquarters, I saw the first glimmer of the impossible becoming possible. The Businessolver Foundation Quarter 1 charity for focus and fundraising was Special Olympics. Our employee fundraising efforts during the quarter helped raise over $4,000 for this great organization. During a lunch and learn, Special Olympics gold-medal athlete Tomi DeGrado came to our offices to share her amazing story. I was beyond moved by her strength, resiliency, and courage, and for a brief moment her bravery rubbed off on me! I agreed to repel for the Over the Edge sponsored event on behalf of Special Olympics, and for Tomi.   

When I accepted the challenge, I didn’t think about the reality of it – repelling 345 feet off an actual building – nor did I take into account my extreme fears. I was purely set on making a difference and raising $1,000 for a cause that I’m passionate about. As the event approac
hed, I had raised more than $2,390—the fourth-highest fundraiser for Special Olympics in Iowa!

When the day arrived to go “Over the Edge,” I was anxious and scared, but I thought of Tomi and felt inspired to make the impossible, possible. I knew I needed a partner in crime to get through this terrifying feat, and I am blessed to have a partner that is always by my side through every crazy adventure. As Joe and I ascended the stairs to the roof of the financial building, he looked at me and said with a smile, “Well this is a fine mess you have gotten us into!” OverTheEdge.png

The actual repel seemed like an eternity, and I am not sure I ever experienced that ‘magical’ feeling that everyone professed  I would feel. But I did it. I made the impossible, possible.   

When I reached the bottom, I was greeted by my Businessolver colleagues, the Special Olympics crew and athletes. I felt an immense sense of relief, followed by overwhelming gratitude for all my family, friends, and colleagues that encouraged and supported me on this pursuit. 

So, while this wasn’t on my bucket list, I am checking it off. I am excited for the next group of adventure seekers to take this challenge on – you will have my support, cheers, and donation! 

Interested in taking on the challenge yourself? Get more information and sign up to participate in next year’s challenge here!