When I think of how to describe 2012, roller coaster comes to mind.
The beginning of 2012 signified the half way mark of my year as Miss Connecticut. On January 5th, I arrived in Las Vegas to represent Connecticut at the Miss America Pageant. The 10 days I spent at Miss America were probably the most memorable of the year. Although I felt that I fully appreciated my time in Las Vegas while I was living it, I am realizing more and more as time goes on, how truly blessed I am to have been given the opportunity to live that experience. I returned from Miss America on a high, and carried that feeling with me through January and much of February as I continued to travel the state as Miss Connecticut.
On February 25th I received a phone call that I will never forget. The call came from the best friend of one of the most incredible people in my life. Mike, or MPD as he was often referred to, had passed away unexpectedly. I met MPD when I was working as an accountant at Deloitte. We instantly had an unspoken connection, and spent more and more time together. He completely understood my passion for wanting to be Miss Connecticut, as his own cousin was Miss Pennsylvania a couple years prior. Each weekend leading up to Miss Connecticut, I would enjoy my “cheat” meal with MPD, which usually consisted of sushi. And during the week, he would cook something from my “pageant diet cook book”, and pretend to enjoy it with me. Understanding my love for ice cream, he even found a way to make me a healthy version, which consisted of cake batter flavored Muscle Milk, Truvia, and Almond Milk. After winning Miss Connecticut, he sent 6 cupcakes from Crumbs Bakery, remembering that cupcakes are of course, my favorite food. I am forever grateful for the time I was lucky enough to spend with MPD, and the memories we made together. I know he is shining down on me from Heaven.
Although it felt like life had been turned upside down, and that it was completely unfair, I knew that I had a job to do. Being Miss Connecticut was about something bigger than myself, and I knew that when I signed that contract, my personal life would come second to fulfilling my role. I cherished my last few months as Miss Connecticut, and accomplished all that I had set out to do.
When pageant week approached at the end of June, I knew that I was ready for the next chapter in my life. I checked off everything on my “to do” list, and could pass on the crown knowing that I left no stone unturned.
During the second half of 2012, I focused on getting back to “normal” life. I was in my last semester of the MBA in Healthcare Management at Quinnipiac University, and was ready to settle into a career.
On October 8th I began employment with GlaxoSmithKline as an Oral Healthcare Consultant. I truly feel that I have landed a job that embodies everything I wanted.
In December, I finally completed my MBA in Healthcare Management, after working on it part-time for 2.5 years.
I could not have gotten through this roller coaster year without my incredible support system. I could never thank my friends and family enough, and I hope that each of you know how special you are to me.
I wish each of you a healthy and happy 2013.
To new beginnings…