On Wednesday, I woke up BEFORE the crack of dawn and traveled to Kennewick to appear on Wake Up Northwest, our local morning news program. I was going to be interviewed about our pageant. I'm not the kind to volunteer for this; when I was a kid I HATED hearing my voice on a recording. But, Rene is my friend; I love her, I love Sofia, and I love what this pageant can do.
In the middle of the interview the morning anchor asked me something along the lines of "So, tell my why you do what you do." To be clear, this was NOT a question I'd spied on her iPad during the commercial break. I took a beat, tried to check my emotions into that dignified corner of the face I like to show the public, and attempted to answer. I think I ended up giving a pretty generic answer about what it does for my heart to be a part of this. Now, I can reflect on the depth of that question. Why DO I do what I do?
For as pink-a-licious and princess-ey as I like to be, I am NOT the pageant type. I am, however, the love type. Once upon a time, when Rene asked me to help her bring Sofia's dream to reality I said yes. Reluctantly...but I DID say yes. I helped pick out tiara designs and shirt colors; I even wrote a coronation script for our MC to read. And sure enough, my love for my friend turned me into a pageant Fairy Godmother.
And people came. Parents registered their daughters. Volunteers offered to do hair and make-up. Other royalty said they'd help crown the girls. Old friends gladly handed out cookies and water. People with great big hearts came out in full force. For these girls. That's one reason why I do it. For these girls. I suspect that is true for many of our volunteers.
But, if I'm honest, there's a little selfishness to it, too. I get to hang out with some of the best volunteers around. I get to witness unbridled joy from the faces of our participants. I get to marvel at the great problem to have of TOO MANY pajamas donated to be delivered in one trip. I get to hear the gratitude of families who get to have a shining day to sit back and just enjoy their daughter. And, if no one is looking, every once-in-a-while, I get to try on a tiara or two.