August 14, 2012

The most impactful day of my 2012 summer

So, I decided to create this blog as a way to document my journey as this year's Miss AfriCanada, so I could not only share it with the public, but to also be able to reflect on it someday. It all happened this past Saturday, Aug. 11, and getting to this point wasn't a piece of cake. I mean, of course I enjoyed it, why else would I have stuck through 3 months of repetitive practices (and a few appearences), and other demands otherwise? It proved to be a great learning experience, from which I gained a few new friends, a confidence boost, and a new chapter in my life.

I'm going to start by fast-forwarding to the very day I was crowned. I was filled with anticipation and anxiety, after all that hard work we had put into that very event that was finally happening. I had prayed intensely the night before, because I didn't want any fear or nervousness to interfere with my performance; therefore hindering my chances of getting the crown. And as a result, I was pretty confident as the show went on. The thing that encouraged me the most was knowing that my family was there, and that many friends & family were cheering for me in the audience; it made me look forward to going on stage whenever it was my turn. One of things that did stress me a little, however, was my talent performance.

The problem with the talent section is that we were given a limit of 2:30 minutes (can you imagine?) for our individual performances, so that contestants wouldn't go overboard. However, I chose to do a monologue which I felt couldn't be performed within that time frame. It was to reflect the situation of systematic rape and sexual abuse that happening in the Eastern DRC (Congo) due to the civil war; and was portraying the character of a raped woman whose recounting her abuse to the audience meanwhile trying to find a solution... Originally, I had made it so long that its performance would last about 7 minutes. Looking back, I now admit that it would've been too long for the show. I was however able to reduce it to about 4:50 minutes, which I thought was good enough for the important message I was trying to send. But the organizers wouldn't have it. As I was about to go on stage that night to perform my talent, one of them reminded me that if I went over the time limit, then I would be cut off. So, evidently that stressed me a lot... But I just had to overlook it, I mean, I still rushed myself as much as I could while acting, but I didn't want to risk not having an emotional impact on the audience because of it. - In the end though it all turned out fine. In fact, I won best talent that night. I know that it was because my talent was not only "me performing a talent" but also a reflection of reality; it was educational and touching. I mean, I could hear gasps and small cries of shock or sadness when I played that character.

So, overall, the evening was phenomenal. I mean, I won, so for me it turned out great. I even got emotional, because as much as you may want or expect something, when it's THIS big and it actually comes true for you, you can't help but feel overwhelmed... I just hope no one thinks I faked it, hahaha, because I reeeally didn't. I was just overjoyed. :)

So, yup, now it's time to live out the Miss AfriCanada Queen life for the year; stay tuned!

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