My name is Ashley Voigt and I am Mrs. North Dakota International 2012! …what?! I still cannot believe the outcome of the incredible weekend. As a first time pageant candidate, I walked into orientation with an open mind and excited heart, not knowing exactly what to expect. I was welcomed right away by the beautiful 2011 title holders and could not be more thrilled to begin the big, two day event. I immediately felt blessed to be involved in such a program that is faith based, organized, and packed with wonderful, loving women. I knew from that moment, I was going to have a memorable weekend.
The crowning moment was a complete shock to me – for a lack of better words. I was very surprised that my name was called because I was surrounded by such accomplished and beautiful women with such inspirational and personal platforms. I remember looking in the audience filled with excitement and seeing my twin sister jump up from her seat, followed by one of my grandmas. I was reminded at that moment how blessed I am to have the incredible family and friends there to support me and how everything seemed to mean even more when I was able to share this moment with them. My dad was the one person that was unable to make it, as he had an obligation that was scheduled over a year ago. I could count on one hand the number of times my parents have missed an event in my life, so it was difficult for both of us. I wanted to share one of the many special comments my dad wrote to me “Final thought….when your onstage and feeling a bit nervous…remember this…that warm feeling you have in your hand? That is me holding on to my little girl’s hand as she makes me so proud!” I cannot imagine what life’s successes and failures would mean without the love and involvement of family?
Now with rested eyes, I look back with an overwhelming feeling of gratitude. I am so grateful for the lessons I learned, the friendships I made and the constant love and support I felt from my family and friends. I look forward to sharing my platform of how parent involvement is empowering in the life of a child and its importance for communication in the areas of speech and language development.
I want to end my very first blog by letting you know that I am committed. I have committed my life as a follower of Christ, loving wife to my amazing husband, compassionate Speech-Language Pathologist, and now as your Mrs. North Dakota International. I am thrilled about the upcoming year and cannot wait to share it all with you!