Hi everyone, and welcome back to my blog! Just an FYI: I tend not to use Quora for my big life decisions, but sometimes, the right forum can bring you places you never even imagined.

Most of my pageant sisters have amazing stories about how they started their journeys. They were either looking for new experiences with different friends, ways to improve their confidence, or a platform to raise their voice. I share those same values, but my first Google search was a little bit different. It went:

“Places to wear a prom dress”

Yep. Having just graduated from high school (in grade 11 in Quebec), I was regretting that I would never again get to wear my sparkly pink princess gown. I turned to Google in the hope of finding an event to which it would be appropriate to wear such a dress. Among weddings, cocktail parties, charity events, and galas, I didn’t expect to find “pageants”.

Prom picture from Mount Royal!

I won’t deny that as a child, I had dreams of entering a pageant. I had never known anyone who had participated in one, though, so my only exposure to them was from the little clips of Toddlers & Tiaras that came up in my YouTube suggestions. As you can imagine, I had no idea what modern teenage pageantry looked like. I started to do some research, and that’s where I came across the Miss Teenage Canada website.

What a change in perspective. My eyes were suddenly open to the fact that pageants are actually a unique opportunity for girls to gain confidence and take their place in society. I thought to myself, “I can stand behind that”, and no sooner than one week later, I was signing myself up for the Miss Teenage Quebec provincial qualifiers.

My excitement leading up to the big day was almost overwhelming. I had no idea what to expect, but I was ready. I had bought a new swimsuit with my best friend, and I was feeling more confident than ever because it would be the first time I would ever wear two-piece swimwear. I was also ecstatic to take my gown out of my closet, since it’s what had gotten me there in the first place.

Right after evening gown section!

Our qualifiers were a private event in front of a small panel. We walked first in swimwear, then in dresses, and finally, we were interviewed. I decided to give it my all, but had no expectations because it was my first time competing in anything like this. I was ultimately thrilled and surprised to find myself crowned Miss Teenage Quebec 2020! Nothing could have prepared me for that, but once I realized it was, in fact, real, I was overcome with joy and a bit of nostalgia, as I realized that one of my childhood dreams had been fulfilled.

Photo: Tommy Levan

I am so excited to have this fantastic opportunity to be a role model to other girls, to become more active in my community, and to raise awareness for eating disorders. Stay tuned for new updates coming soon!

Written by: Clara
Posted On: Categories:Clara, Miss Teenage Canada

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