How has holding a NAM National title changed my life? I think a better question would be how has it not changed my life, as National American Miss has indeed infiltrated every aspect of my life from the moment I was crowned the 2015-2016 NAM Teen.
As a National Titleholder, physically I’ve been given a crown and banner, but metaphorically I’ve been given a a door and a microphone. The crown I wear has opened doors to venture to new places, to meet new people, and to experience new opportunities. The banner has allowed me to project my story, my passions, and my heart to audiences larger than I could have ever dreamed.
I have traveled over 10,000 miles to 13 states as an ambassador for NAM. From spending a day at Niagara Falls, to seeing multiple Broadway shows in New York City, to touring our nation’s capital in Washington, D.C., to experiencing our rich history in Philadelphia… NAM has afforded me incredible opportunities to travel.
Moreover, being a NAM National Titleholder has shown me the beauty that lies in giving of yourself in service to others. The truth that our lives are but a vapor has been an overriding theme this year. Each person that I have met with or spoken to, although briefly, has impacted my life for the better. From our NAM State Finalists and their families, to various school groups, to precious babies fighting for their next breath in the Ronald McDonald House of Northwest Florida and Sacred Heart Children’s Hospital, this year has shown me the beauty and brevity in each of our lives. I will always cherish the relationships I have manifested through the crown.
The final avenue that NAM has changed me is through its sisterhood, our NAMily. As cliched or cheesy as it may sound, a family like this is unparalleled. Tears fill my eyes as I think of the sisters that I now share in every corner of our country. It has been an honor to lead and serve with them this year. An even greater honor lies in the ability to spend the rest of our lives uplifting one another in our successes and carrying each other through our trails.
My year of service with National American Miss has changed every part of me. As a stage performer, I had always seen myself as a confident person, but I realized that that confident facade was merely another character I assumed on stage. National American Miss has shown me the depth of talent I possess and the heights that I am able to soar to. Claiming the National Teen title eradicated my fear of failure and showed me that the one thing keeping me from accomplishing my goals, is me. National American Miss has equipped me with the skills that I need to chase and achieve my wildest dreams. As the 2015-2016 National American Miss Teen, I am continually #GrowingConfidence.