I started my reign by making introductions of who I was and what my platform was and asking to volunteer wherever I could. Little did I know the doors about to open up to me. I was welcomed by Lowell General Hospital and asked to become their Honorary Chairperson for TeamWalk for CancerCare. I was asked to speak at several Relay for Life events with the American Cancer Society. I raised funds for LGH TeamWalk for CancerCare, Susan G. Komen, Avon Breast Cancer, American Cancer Society, American Heart Association to name a few. I participated in a Polar Plunge to raise funds for cancer and I also dug a master sewer trench and learned to use table saws and a nail gun to put down hardwood floors and baseboards at a house for Habitat for Humanity. At work I coordinated fundraisers which also provided educational sessions for breast cancer and also heart health for my fellow employees. I have traveled my state sharing my mother's story as well as mine and have learned so many new things with regards to breast cancer awareness, prevention, heart health, and working in my community. The confidence I have gained is amazing. When I spoke at my first Relay for Life Kick-off, I could barely get through my story without my voice quivering and tears rolling down my face, now I share the story with a smile and strength as I know I am making my mother proud and making a difference. This has not only been a rewarding journey, but also therapeutic one in a sense knowing that I am not the only daughter that has gone through this with the people who have shared their stories back with me and said thank you for coming out to share mine with them.
I want to thank Lowell General Hospital's Andrea Jackson, Ellen Kallman, Meg Lemire, and so many others for welcoming me into their organization and helping me spread my word. To Kevin Campbell, Helen Sullivan, Beverly Siebert, and all the other Surivors and Patient Families, you have filled my heart with hope and inspiration with all you do to remember your loved ones and for your survivorship. To Lisa Einstein at the American Heart Association who shared with me ideas on how to better my life with heart health as well as sharing knowledge that helped me earlier this year when my father was going through heart related issues, I thank you so much! To the American Cancer Society who has amazing programs for cancer patients and their families, thank you for putting together the most amazing event, The Relay for Life. To my Relay for Life Team, Queens for Relay, I thank you so much for all your hard work to raise funds and help our team come in second place for fundraising! The Massachusetts Breast Cancer Coalition is an amazing organization that focuses on PREVENTION of breast cancer, I am so proud that you are an organization in my home state educating our residents on how to prevent breast cancer. The New England Coaltion for Cancer Survivorship which helps patients after they have fought the battle of their life and helps them in their new journey in life as Survivors. To the Chelmsford Rotary Club and the Town of Chelmsford for including me in your events and making me so proud of the town I live in! A new opportunity that came my way was winning a contest to be a Mommy Blogger with the Merrimack Valley Moms! I've always had a passion for writing, and this is an amazing opportunity to share and learn through writing on life as a mom.
I will be off on a jet plane to meet some of the most amazing women at the Mrs. International Pageant on July 13. Facebook has been such an amazing tool for us to create friendships well in advance. I am so looking forward to meeting my new friends Feryl, Cydney, Deanna, Julie, Shannon, Shana, Anita, Jennifer(s), Toni, Bernadette, Elaine, Nancy-Ellen, Cynthia, Heather, Remy! You have all been so supportive and encouraging to me, and I cannot wait to finally meet you! Being an only child, I feel like I have lots of sisters now! To all the other ladies that I will meet, it will be an incredible time, and I know that the Class of 2010 will produce the most amazing Mrs. International ever! Mary Richardson, thank you for choosing me as your Mrs. Massachusetts, your support, and belief in me. You have an amazing organization that supports women to be the best that they can be and to help them promote what is nearest and dearest to their hearts in their platforms and their families.
Thank you to my husband Rob, my daughter Sierra, my father, and all my family and friends! Your support and belief in me means more then you will ever know, and I could not have done this without you! Because of you and this experience, I am a better wife, mother, and person. Life is a gift, and each day needs to be cherished as if there is no tomorrow!
Thank you all for being a part of my life and I hope to make everyone proud as Mrs. Massachusetts at the Mrs. International Pageant and beyond!
Mom, I know that you are looking down on me and you have guided me down this path in life. Thank you for teaching me to be a strong woman and laying the foundation for me to be the mom that I am to Sierra! You are always in my heart and I know that you will be on that Mrs. International stage with me, in that dress that you chose for me so many years ago saying "Maybe someday when you get married and compete in a Mrs. Pageant, you can wear this!" That day has come and I know I will feel beautiful and have you right there with me! I miss you and love you!
Chicago, here I come, and I know "Tonight's Going to be a Good Night!"