Miss International Week was one of most beautiful, exhilarating, and nerve wrecking experiences of my life. Throughout the week, I was greeted by a beautiful young lady who would not only be my comrade in this journey… but a forever best friend. Taylor Woodruff, Miss North Dakota International 2016, was truly a gift from God. She cheered me on, prayed with me, and had me smiling each and every day. The week is amazing but it is even better when you have a true best friend by your side. I would do anything for her and I know she feels the same. When it came time for the final pageant, I told her that if it wasn’t my time for the job of Miss International then it was my genuine prayer that it would be hers.
I think if we both went in with the mindset of “competing” against others… we would have missed out on a phenomenal sisterhood.
Our friendship will go long beyond our time in International Pageants. We still talk on an almost daily basis and even shared Christmas together through FaceTime. She’s worth the rain and the sleet and the snow that I will experience at the Miss North Dakota International pageant when I visit as Miss International 2016. She is truly one of the most beautiful people I know.
My hope is that every contestant is able to find their own Taylor - a friend who they love and loves them in return. A friend who genuinely wants the best for you and you feel the exact same.
When you truly think about it, the only person you’re competing against is yourself. There is no comparative scoring and you’re going for your personal highest score in each phase of competition. It doesn’t matter how everyone else performs - it matters how you perform.
As Miss International 2017 week quickly approaches, I challenge you to find your Taylor and make friends with the other state representatives. Keep your eyes focused on being your personal best competitor and building the friendships that will genuinely last a lifetime. I am confident that each competitor can walk away with forever friends and I pray that you all are able to create beautiful memories!
Redefining Beauty Worldwide,
Miss International 2016