Monday, October 8, 2018

Bridget Oei Talks Miss America: A Guest Series (Part 2 - The Arrival)

Have you ever wondered what it would be like to compete at Miss America? I know I have. Miss Connecticut Bridget Oei has graciously agreed to help us all try and figure that out. She will be writing a series of guest blogs chronicling her time at Miss America that I am honored to be able to present here. To see all of Bridget's posts, look here.

Today we have our second entry as Bridget shares what she was thinking and feeling as she arrived in Atlantic City for the Miss America Competition. I hope you enjoy it!

My room was divided into sections, one area for competition wardrobe, another for rehearsals. Every article was labelled with CT and my initials. Two weeks of clothing, supplies, and necessities were packed and organized ready for the trip to Atlantic City.

The drive to New Jersey, seemed like the longest trip of my life. I was so excited to get there, get settled, and get going. I had been prepping for this experience for months, but dreaming about how it would actually feel to be attending Miss America for years. This was it!

I cannot say that the reality of going to Miss America had really sunk in at this point. I was ready and prepared, excited to share with America who I am. It was game time, and I had every tool I needed to succeed. Family and friends were sending me messages of well wishes and I distinctly remember during the drive, saying to my mom, “I want to make my people proud, I want to make some history!”

When I arrived at the Golden Nugget where I was staying, I was immediately greeted by one of my warm and wonderful hostesses Debbie, who made me feel so calm and welcomed. My wardrobe was whisked away to my room, while I was brought to the hospitality suite where I met my other hostesses and the other titleholders who were all staying at the same location. The hospitality suite had a beautiful view of the Atlantic City Marina and I remember taking pictures of the scenery and getting overwhelmed with excitement that I was finally here! The other candidates began trickling in as their flights and rides arrived, and we all chatted as we finally relaxed after the frenzy of packing and preparing. This is where I felt that initial bond of sisterhood with these women. We were all aware that we were sharing in this once in a lifetime experience together and that made us closer than you can imagine. We all agreed that these next two weeks were opportunities for each of us to soak up every single moment.

If you told little 10 year old Bridget years ago that she would be where she was today, I do not know if she would have believed you. When I arrived in Atlantic City, I felt inundated with opportunity and possibility. I had the chance to shine, to give this experience everything I had and leave these two weeks with no regrets whatsoever. Supported my sponsors, my board and team from Connecticut, and my entire family behind me, I felt ready to make little Bridget proud.

With Love,

Bridget Oei

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