Wednesday, January 8, 2014

"Overcomer"

I’m absolutely sure that everyone dreams of their perfect “crowning moments” face. For me, it didn’t matter how many times I practiced the most stunning and photogenic look, because when that moment actually happened, I didn’t prepare for the immediate collapse of my knees! I would like to thank the beautiful Miss Grand Forks, Alicia Pauling, for being right by my side and holding me up!

When one of my idols, Taylor Wagner, came over to pass her crown on to me, I was in total shock. I really wish I could say that I remember more from this moment I was able to spend with Taylor, but the only thing I heard was her voice saying “just stay down!” I think I might have laughed when I heard her say that, so thank you Taylor for helping me to smile instead of pass out! Taylor, thank you so much for guiding all of us over the weekend and during your reign. You are a fantastic role model. 
I still am, and will likely forever be star-struck by all of the titleholders of Miss North Dakota International. I have so much respect for these iconic women. I remember the first time I met Brandi Schoenberg and I thought she was walking on a cloud! Erica Lemna is so charming and kind that she captures my immediate attention when
she enters a room. And I can’t believe the absolutely stunning Stacy Schaffer knows my name! And it doesn’t matter how many times I have run into Allison Harmon, I might always be a little speechless around her. If I am ever able to string a successful sentence together around any of these women, I will probably be so excited that my next sentence will be absolute gibberish again. Thank you to all of you for all of your inspiration and the legacy you have created.

I want to recognize all of the heroes who competed with me, my fellow Miss North Dakota International contestants. The impact they have had on the world matters and I want to thank all of them for their dedication to their cause. Because of their hard work, dedication, achievements, and accomplishments, they have made a difference. They truly are the definition for leaving the world a better place than they found it and I can’t thank them enough for all that they have done and all that they are capable of doing. I hope to work along side all of you this year with your platforms and of course to see all of my new sisters compete again next year!

To anyone who is considering competing in this system, you will be overwhelmed by the amount of love, support, and encouragement from all of the other contestants. I attended my first pageant workshop for the 2013 pageant and was unsure about entering, until Erin Bertel, Tammy DeSautel, and Jen Mauch took me aside. Even though they were at a workshop to focus on what they needed to do to win, they took the time to tell me why it was so important that I compete with them. Without their kind and thoughtful words, I wouldn’t have started the journey I am on now. There is so much that I want to say about my experience in the International Pageant System and it has all been made possible because of the amazing women that are a part of it. 

One experience that I need to share immediately is about a moment shortly after I was crowned. There was a young girl that wanted to tell me she has just started her own journey on her school’s debate team and that she felt inspired by my story. I wish I had not been in so much shock at the time, but I didn’t think to get a picture with her and I have forgotten her name. I was so honored to meet her, and if anyone knows who this beautiful little girl was, please get her in contact with me so we can get a picture together!


Meg Pulkrabek RD, LRD
Miss North Dakota International 2014