12 shows, 3 seasons, countless injuries, tears and finally smiles and laughter later I get it. Shows really aren’t about the $40 trophy...
This year at Miami Bikini Universe I can’t say a trophy didn’t matter but I can say I finally felt the big picture; the trophy isn’t even the half of it... It’s about the journey and the friends and family who stand by you until the end. It’s about the Savage family, our little bubble of happiness in this crazy competitive world we’ve formed, that’s continuously growing. It’s sharing snacks backstage, it’s the high fives and congrats we give to complete strangers as we walk on and off stage, it’s the crazy pictures, it’s the big hug and smile from your coach telling you she’s proud and it’s about our sisterhood. Hearing your name cheered as you walk on stage is an amazing feeling but it means even more when you know those voices are the one’s who have been there when you just needed to vent, when you didn’t think you could do it and they helped you push on, those voices full of support love and guidance day in and day out.
Thank you doesn’t even come close but thank you so much to Cathy as well as all the sisters and coaches who have helped me make it through to even be able to get back on stage. Thank you all for the pep talks, facebook messages, phone calls and text messages day in and day out and knowing that you are always there. I love you all.
But back to the show and Miami, what an absolutely amazing weekend! Such a wonderful Savage turnout and Savage domination! Media day on Thursday at the Hilton host hotel (a new venue for this year) was loads of fun getting sassy and silly pictures with the entire group competing this year as well as our tradition team Savage shoot! Then it was time for our individual check-ins, team pep rally and time to start painting up with the layers of Jan Tana where you really find out who your true friends are!
Friday was quite the early morning for us all, my make-up with 5 star beauty started at 4:45 (and I wasn’t even the first) Huge shout out to Lil P and Brooke for all their wonderful work especially for such a long day!! Ladies I must say this is one of the best investment you can spend in competing, for some reason your make up will always mess up no matter how good you think you can do it and your hair will always fall flat no matter how much hair spray you use... and that’s if you can actually get it done in the double amount of time it normally takes that you allotted yourself (experience speaking here...) Friday’s pre-juding was a bit different this year, which I actually liked for much less stress and hair changes, where as Friday was only theme wear for bikini. Plus its loads of fun look at everyone’s costumes! After pre-juding in the morning it was off to rest a bit and get even more use out of my fabulous 5 star beauty make-up for a beach sunset photo shoot with John Lanthrop and a few other Savage Sisters! Although we had to dodge the rain and got swarmed by mosquitoes, it was loads of fun! Let me tell you that guy is awesome, great pictures, great ideas and so funny!
Saturday was another early one with pre-juding in bikini round starting at 9 am (another piece of advice, I learned a few years ago, always stay in the host hotel, its not worth saving even $50 a night to have to brave the elements or trying to hail a cab and being late to hair/make up or even worse, the show, especially so early in the morning for bikini girls). I have to say it was the most fun I’ve ever had backstage at a show, pictures pictures and more pictures! You can always tell the Savage girls backstage because were the one’s all smiles dancing around sharing lipsticks, bikini bite and as soon as we get off stage, SNACKS!!!! I was super impressed by how sweet every single competitor, Savage girl or not was, always willing to help and the high fives, smiles, good lucks and congrats were flying all around all morning long! For me this was HUGE, I’ve always been so concerned with placing it was nice to really enjoy the experience. Even on stage waiting for callouts I remember thinking, oh, ok this is what is all about, standing next to your best friend on stage and wishing that there weren’t even results at all.
As soon as results were in it was time for some goodies and let me tell you cheesecake post show is now a tradition, in addition the Reese’s (those of you who know me know how much I love those little guys...) Then it was time for showers and some fun! Miami isn’t exactly the safest city but the food and shopping is wonderful. I must say be VERY careful if you travel on the monorail and never ever go anywhere with less that 2 or 3 other girls! Unfortunately I never made it to the legendary Mango’s as I had a bunch of friends from home in town and I hated not being able to see more of the show but all and all what a wonderful time! My only regret is not being able to see more of my Savage teammates, but here’s to next year... or even Vegas?!?!