Sunday, April 26, 2015

7th Time's the Charm?!?

Last weekend, 48 beautiful women took the stage in Corsicana to compete for the Mrs. Texas America title. It was my 7th... yes, 7th... time to compete in the pageant and as with any year, my mission was to bring home the crown. Unfortunately, that just wasn't in the cards this year. And it was disappointing.

This year's competition was a little different because of the number of contestants we had. I think the most I'd competed with before was around 36. Because of the numbers, we had to compete in prelims so the schedule was a bit different than we're used to.

DAY ONE - Rehearsals

My roll-dawg Vanessa and I rolled into Corsicana around 11:15 am on the 16th. We had just enough time to check into the hotel before racing over to the Palace Theater in downtown. We posed for our contestant pics while practicing for the following night's prelims. Good thing we got our pics in early because the skies opened up over Corsicana that evening and there were beauty queens running to their cars after rehearsals trying to stay dry.


More on this pic in a bit...

















































My soaking wet contestant number...


























DAY ONE - COCKTAIL PARTY

After I tamed my hair extensions and threw on a little makeup, I made my way through the soggy streets to the Corsicana Country Club for dinner and dancing. Ryan couldn't make it to the party this year so I was officially a part of the single ladies club at the party.




























There was some wobbling going on during the party...

DAY TWO - MORE REHEARSALS/PRELIMS

We were back at the theater the next morning for rehearsals in preparation of the evening's prelims. As I mentioned before, we had to compete in a preliminary because of the number of contestants this year. It was insane having to compete two nights in a row - lots of pressure and stress, but fun! It was pretty awesome to get the first night over.

Rehearsals

Prelim Introductions

Backstage after prelims.

With my girls Lynne and Vanessa.



















































































I rushed home to get ready for interviews and tried to get some sleep!

DAY THREE - INTERVIEWS, REHEARSALS, FINALS

I was up bright and early the next morning for my interview. My call time was 8:50 and I was ready to go. Thank goodness my pageant makeup sponsor Bonnie Benavidez decided to spend the night - she glammed me up for both prelims, interviews and finals. I tell her this every year, but I really couldn't do this without her. Her Avasiare cosmetics are the best!


























Finals were tough. We did our amazing opening number dance then the field of 48 was immediately narrowed down to 20. ACK! They called the first group of ten and dismissed them from the stage then began calling the next ten. 11th... not me... 12th... not me. Then 13 - WOOHOO! That was me! I thought it was a sign! It was my 7th year competing and I was the 13th named called - well, my birthday is July 13th. I figured this was it.

The top 20 competed in swimsuit and evening gown again, then we were narrowed down to the top 10. I honestly didn't know if I was going to make the cut. I was very, very grateful I did.

My Jovani gown from Tres Jolie in Edmond, OK was amazing!

I was the first name to be called for the top 10.

Top 10



















































After the top 10 lined up in the pic right above, the judges took a look at us and narrowed it down to 6. I thought I had a pretty good chance of making it into the next group. While I was disappointed I didn't , I was not surprised about the ladies who did. I went and sat backstage and watched the outgoing Mrs. Texas Whitney take her final walk - it was such a bittersweet moment.

At the end of the night, Melissa Pocza took home the title. She'll be a great Mrs. Texas - she's done it before and knows the ropes. She represents the crown well. I was super-pumped about my top 10 finish but somewhat bummed... there were no plaques this year... no real recognition of months of sacrifice and hard work. But that's okay - sometimes it just happens that way. And I won regardless... let me explain why...

1. On day two of rehearsals, our opening number choreographer extraordinaire Edrienne Edwards reminded us why we put ourselves through this every year. It's not just about the crown - it's about being positive role models for our families and using the platform to spread awareness for the causes we champion. During intermission on finals night, I walked out into the crowd to see my family and friends. Will, completely unprompted, told me I was beautiful. As I wiped away tears, I remembered Edrienne's words and understood in that moment that the crown is important, but there is a bigger purpose being on that stage.

2. I shared this on Facebook after the pageant. I know it inspired other people... and I'm glad it did. THIS is why posting that bathing suit pic earlier is a big deal for me. It's not perfect (at least in my eyes), but a wonderful reminder of what I accomplished to get ready for the pageant.

Four months ago I walked onto the scale at a doctor's office and saw a number I hadn't seen since I was almost full term with Bryn. I was being treated for hyperthyroidism and the thyroid suppression meds devastated my metabolism. Luckily my thyroid levels were finally normal and I was taken off all of my meds.

Four months later with clean eating help from Snap Kitchen and Nanolean I got from Naila Malik, I walked across a stage in a bathing suit 20 lbs lighter; wore a size 2 evening gown; and placed in the top 10 at Mrs. Texas.

This post isn't about the weight loss. It's about reclaiming my health. I fought doctors for six months before my thyroid diagnosis... my instinct told me something was wrong. Doctors told me it was stress. After a year on meds my instinct told me I didn't need the meds anymore. A second opinion confirmed my instinct was right. 

























All in all, it was an awesome weekend as usual. It was so awesome, I'm actually considering breaking my one-pageant-a-year rule and might compete in another pageant in a couple of weeks. We shall see...

























Mrs. Texas Top 10









































Sending a special shout out to my family and my friends Venture, Stuart and Chad for coming out to support on pageant night. And a huge thank you to my sponsors!!! And I have to share some love with my pageant director Tracy Crist - she did a great job this year. Our official pageant photo Larry Wright always makes us look good too!

Dr. Naila Malik (www.nailamalikmdskin.com)
Bonnie Benavidez – Avasiare Professional Skincare & Cosmetics (www.avasiare.com)
Katie Tellor – Katie Tellor Hair (www.katietellor.com)
Klix Hair Extensions (www.klixhair.com)
Snap Kitchen (www.snapkitchen.com)
Daniel Magoon – Snap Kitchen
Kameisha Getum – Spa La La (www.spalaladallas.com)

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