Earlier this week I was asked to judge the Fair Queen Contest in our neighboring county. Honestly, judging a queen contest isn't really my thing. I've never been the girly girl that dresses up and parades around singing and dancing. Truthfully, I've always kind of brushed off women in any kind of pageant as some sort of airhead, I'm sorry to admit. But, I agreed to do this because a friend of mine asked me to help her out.
And I am so glad I did because I definitely changed my mind about any girl that enters into a pageant of any sort. It takes a great deal of courage to subject yourself to being judged! First we interviewed the girls, then they shared their talent, finally they modeled two different outfits. For most of the girls talking and performing came quite easily; relaxed, intelligent, humorous . Unsurprisingly, these were the girls that won queen and runner ups.
But the girls with the most courage were those who talking and performing didn't come so easily. There was one girl, I remember, that was so nervous she was practically shaking during the entire interview and talent portions. The poor girl. I could have easily been her when I was in high school. Indeed I do remember a speech I was asked to give in high school English class where I shook and my voice trembled the entire time. As a teenager, my entering a pageant like this would have been pure torture. Those few girls who were so incredibly nervous, I was sooo very proud of them! How brave they were to put themselves out there knowing they probably weren't going to win the title. To put themselves in front of a crowd to sing or dance or whatever. That's not something just anyone could do! Surely some of those girls only entered knowing that it would be a good learning experience for them although a difficult one.
I was so very proud of every one of those girls despite the fact I had never met them before the judging. They put themselves out there to be judged, something I would NEVER have done at their age. Judging those girls wasn't easy because I sure didn't write any sort of comment that would have broken their spirit. I know it's an old cliche that "they were all winners" but really it's true. I'd be happy to judge another queen contest at any time!