Hello from the High Desert, I am Kiara Farrow, Miss High Desert 2015. Even though this is my first title with the Miss America Organization- I have been working to get a title since 2012. My journey to this first title has taken me through 16 pageants. Persistence, positivity, and patience when overcoming obstacles are all essential to success in any endeavor but especially in the pageant world.
Persistence– I knew what my goal was and I never lost sight of it no matter how many times I walked away without a crown. With each pageant I was able to learn and grow because I asked for critique. I would email pageant directors, judges, backstage assistants, even regional directors and ask, “How can I improve?” Every one of them would always respond with open and honest feedback that gave me concrete areas to work on improving. It is not enough to just keep trying; you must keep trying to be better. There is some truth in the statement: “different judges, different day, different results.” However, for the result to be different, you have to be different as well. You can’t do the same thing, the same way and expect better results. You must make a change and you must be persistent.
Positivity– I always remained focused and positive that my turn would come as long as I put in the work. With each pageant my efforts were recognized as I started to receive runner up placements and win categories. I was able to remain positive and my feedback became more positive. I made so many friends doing these pageants that it was easy to be truly happy for the girl that was crowned. Each pageant was a fun and exciting experience regardless of the outcome. I learned to enjoy each category of competition and strive to put my own personal touch on my walking patterns, turns or poses. I started branching out and taking risks with my talent such as switching to tap instead of jazz dance. These changes made each pageant a new, fresh challenge for me and I always enjoy a challenge. I would begin and end each new pageant on a positive note.
Patience– In April 2013 I was hospitalized and had to drop out of school for a semester. Through this experience I learned patience. I was frustrated by not being able to transfer to a University to finish my degree and start working on my teaching credential but I learned to be patient. Believe me, being in a hospital forces you to be a “patient patient”. Everything happens on “hospital time” not on your time schedule. I learned to accept my current circumstances and understand that I can complete my education at any age. When it comes to expanding your mind, learning and receiving an education age is merely a number. My goal did not have to change to fit my timeline, my timeline needed to change to fit my goal. When faced with a serious diagnosis and invasive diagnostic procedures you quickly realize how short life can be and you must live in the moment and appreciate the time you have. Before my diagnosis I had lost an uncle to Leukemia and both Grandparents to cancer as well. A very dear nine year old friend of mine, Gigi had also battled with leukemia. She went into remission and during that time she was able to cheer on my Young Champions cheer team. Sadly, she later lost her battle with the disease. Then suddenly, I was very ill and diagnosed with possible leukemia. It was huge blow to my family and me. I had to have a bone marrow biopsy and thankfully it was not leukemia. However, I was still very ill and had to drop that semester of school and have been trying to catch up ever since.
Persistence, positivity and patience are also needed when I am working with the children at RISE after school program. My platform is RISE up for after school programs. When I work with the young children at RISE, I always try to be positive and patient with them. These children come from troubled backgrounds and need lots of understanding and support. I always try to instill in my students the importance of persistence in their own lives so they too can overcome the obstacles that they come up against. I want them to be able to have a positive attitude and be patient when things become difficult. I know that the 3 P’s will help them be more successful in their own lives and break the cycle of difficulties that they have been fighting against in their lives up to this point.
I have relied on my persistence, positivity and patience to continue to work towards my educational and career goals as well as my pageant goals. I have continued my effort to win a local title and compete at Miss California. Due to my ability to live my life by the 3 P’s I am back on track with both of these goals. On March 8th I had the privilege and honor of being crowned Miss High Desert 2015. I am so excited to walk across the Miss California stage this June surrounded by all my new sisters from my past sixteen pageants!
Miss High Desert