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Friday, July 12, 2013

A Busy Time

Recently, I've dealt with a bit of anxiety. I've been anxious about the coming week's competition. You would think that after four years competing in the Miss Arkansas Pageant it would become routine to work through those last minute preparations and packing. But this simply isn't the case. In fact, it is quite possible that because of my past experiences I recognize just how important this next week is going to be. The way I see it, my blog is my personal space dedicated to keeping you updated and to keeping me sane by providing an outlet for my thoughts. That being said, I want to be honest with you going into this next week. It's tough!

There I said it. Competition is difficult. For starters, have you glanced through the other 44 girls competing this year? Take a moment and do so on the contestant page of the Miss Arkansas website that I'll conveniently link, here. These truly are some of the most impressive young women in our state. If you think that isn't enough to make me a little nervous, well, then I'll share a little more about my preparations as of late.

About two weeks ago, I discovered some issues with my talent selection. Nothing major, but these issues resulted in my needing to learn nine new measures of music only a couple of weeks before competition. Then, to top off my musical woes, my flute suffered a broken spring during pageant bootcamp. Needless to say, I was a wreck! Luckily, I've devoted more hours than I can count practicing on a flute I had repaired immediately following that week, and I can honestly say, I'm starting to feel that it is all coming together. There are a few other things that have occurred that I won't bog you down with. Overall just know, that we competitors put in a lot of hours practicing our talents, working out, and serving our local communities. 

Finally though, I'd like to share that the coming week is important to me for so many more reasons than just the crown and those few moments on stage. I recognize, after four years of competing, that the job of Miss Arkansas is going to be full of good days and bad days, but on all days Miss Arkansas must be prepared to act as a fully committed, energetic, creative, and personable, goodwill ambassador of the state. This is a daunting task and I'd be lying if I wasn't a little afraid of living up to the task. Of course, then I realize that most of the fear is just coming from my nerves, and the rest, the part that is a humble respect for the position, well, it serves to push me into becoming the best me that I can be. I work to improve myself so that if next Saturday night I am that fortunate girl who hears her name called when the scores are tallied, I will be able to step into that role fully prepared (with the help of some pretty amazing volunteers, family, and friends) to serve my home state and represent the Miss Arkansas Organization well. I do it, so that if I am not the girl chosen, I can walk away having gained invaluable life skills with my head held high fully in support of whomever becomes Miss Arkansas 2013. Because that is the kind of young woman that this program produces. 

Don't worry! The week hasn't been all stress. In fact, last Saturday I attended the Miss Arkansas Outstanding Teen Pageant. My mum and I traveled together and made a stop in Little Rock to look for shoes for my interview outfit. We got lucky at DSW and found a great, surprisingly affordable pair of heels that compliment my new dress nicely! We made the trip on to Hot Springs in the afternoon and I had the privilege of helping collect tickets at the door with a few other Miss Arkansas contestants. The pageant, as usual, was phenomenal! The production team we have here in Arkansas is top of the line. A beautiful new Miss Arkansas Outstanding Teen was crowned, and one of my sister teen queens was first runner-up. It was an incredibly exciting night! The remainder of this week has been spent in the gym, at dress fittings, practicing my flute, on an impromptu trip to Blytheville, last minute planning, packing, whew!, and even enjoying a slight bit of rest!

Amy Crain and I after the pageant (LOVE this girl!!!)

Such a sweet friend! Molly and I stage right

Now that you know the goings-on of my past week, I'll share the verse that has spoken volumes to me in the last few days.  

25 “Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? 26 Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? 27 And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life? 28 And why are you anxious about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin, 29 yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. 30 But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is alive and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? 31 Therefore do not be anxious, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ 32 For the Gentiles seek after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all. 33 But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. 34 “Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.
                                                                                               ~Matthew 6:25-34

I'll be heading to Hot Springs tomorrow! Thank you for all of your love and support! 


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