As Ms. America International 2016, my journey is not only about making a difference in the lives of others but to encourage those I meet along the way to do the same. But with so many worthy causes, deserving charities and individuals in need, sometimes it’s difficult to know where to start. “It made a difference to that one” are the words that inspire and motivate me to get involved every day especially when I’m feeling small and helpless during troubling times. I think we all have those moments where overwhelming events or circumstances leave us feeling hopeless and believing that one person can’t possibly make a difference in a world where there is so much turmoil. These are the times that I am reminded of “The Star Thrower” by Loren Eiseley (or “The Starfish Story”) which is about a man throwing starfish beached after a storm back into the sea so they didn’t die in the morning sun. When told there were too many to save and that he could not make a difference, the man smiled, threw another starfish back into the sea and said “it made a difference to that one”. Whether it is a friendly smile, words of kindness or comfort, or reaching out to help someone in need, we all have the power to change a life, a mind, or a circumstance one kind gesture at a time. Have you saved your “starfish” today?
On August 29, 2015 I was crowned Ms America International 2016. Some might think “and the winner is” were the words that changed my life. Yes, things have been different since then, but this isn’t about winning a crown, it’s about a winning mindset. What truly changed my life and put me on a path to self-rediscovery began a year earlier with four monumental words . . . “you are turning fifty”!
Stunning scenery will be on display on a benefit bike ride that melds fitness, personal challenge and a general good time with the fight against multiple sclerosis. AARP Utah will sponsor a rest stop offering food and water to cyclists on the Logan route of the 27th annual Bike MS: Harmons Best Dam Bike Ride, June 29 and 30.
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