Wow! What a whirlwind journey I have been on since being crowned Miss Kansas 2011. I am so blessed to have had the opportunity to compete for Miss America. I did not think I could be in this position or even be able to obtain such a prestigious title. I have realized this year that it is not about me, it is a selfless year of service to reach people you may not be able to reach before. To make a change and a difference in the lives of others through service. The women, volunteers, and sponsors involved in this organization are some of the most incredible people I have ever met. I could never thank you enough truly for allowing me to serve alongside you for a year. The change that has taken place in my heart, and the confidence gained through this experience is something that I thank God for everyday. This organization has changed my life forever and please know, from the bottom of my heart that I am truly grateful for all of your hard work and support. I have had such an amazing year and it did not end in a boring way at all. Last week I had the chance to spend a lot of time with our 2012 contestants throughout rehearsals and prelims We had such a strong group of talented young ladies, I am so glad I wasn’t a judge. To pick just one had to be a very tough decision. Our wonderful judges took their job very seriously giving each of the contestants a challenging interview to see who would best fit the job. At the end of the week I was honored to crown Sloane Lewis our new Miss Kansas 2012. I am thrilled to have a new Miss K sister and please pray for her on her journey. She will have the chance to compete for Miss America 2013 so please watch and vote. She is an extraordinary young women that will put her own touch on the crown.
Something very exciting happened to me the night before my final day as Miss Kansas. After the Friday night preliminary competition was a very private affair. I was told to walk on the stage and pose an on stage question. Once I started reading the note I knew something life changing was about to happen. The note read:
1 Corinthians 13:4–8a Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never ends.
As I am reading this verse, I see the man God has brought into my life walking up the stairs. He takes my hands and tells me “ Something will be ending on this stage tomorrow night, but I want something to begin on this stage tonight.” As he got down on one knee, asked me to marry him. Of course I said YES!!!!! It was the easiest on stage question I have ever had to answer. It was the sweetest ending to an amazing year of opportunity and blessings.
I am so thankful for this year and could not have done it or have been as successful without your love and support. Thank you to everyone whos has helped me our touched my life in some way. Watch for updates on our wonderful Miss Kansas 2012 and love her and support her like you have done for me.
Carissa Dawn KelleyMiss Kansas 2011
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