I've been competing with NAM since 2005, so that's 7 years for the mathematically challenged. Any other year I'd be blogging about how excited I am to compete and what I'm doing to prepare. However, this year I already know!
The Miss system in NAM is a little different than the typical Princess through Teen age divisions. At the state level, we have a different way of competing.
In April I sent in my application: resume, photo, and essay. I decided to follow one of the given prompts: How do you define true beauty? This was a natural choice for me since Amanda Moreno, the current National All-American Miss was Miss Georgia Teen in 2010 with me when she decided to start the True Beauty movement. Almost all of the 2010 teen queens took a picture with sashes, a white t-shirt, and NO makeup to show that although pageant girls love to get all dolled up with makeup, rhinestones, and super sassy and stylish outfits, we're also down to earth girls who are comfortable in our own skin. In my essay I was able to incorporate a little background of the movement along with my personal journey with NAM. I think I wrote the entire essay in 20 minutes because it flowed easily. When you're speaking from the heart, the words come easily.
So then I waited....and waited. Patience is still a virtue I'm working on so it was very difficult to wait until mid May to find out the results. Early May I was getting pretty antsy to find out how I had placed. What made it even worse was soon all around Facebook I started seeing posts from other states that had found out! Patience I kept telling myself. Each text from pageant friends asking if I knew yet made me even more excited...and nervous.
Finally after I felt everyone from different states had found out, I got the call. You don't know how much a stomach can flip until you see "NAM NATIONALS" pop up on your cell caller ID. Our nationals representative told me I had gotten it! I was to be crowned Miss Minnesota for NAM at the end of July. SO EXCITING! I called my mom right away to share the good news.