I think today is the perfect time to collide and share my life in writing and pageantry. Both aids to help me handle life in quarantine; as for those that doesn’t know, I need arts of all mediums, stories, people, media production in my life. These make me sane. We all have our own ways to be happy, healthy and sane. Here are the pieces of my life.
Welcome to my other hats. Welcome to my world.
So let me take this back…
Let’s go back in time… On January 5th of 2020…
A random stranger sent me a random message at 4:20AM Philippine Standard Time (PST) on Messenger. I was quite surprised that there was a random lady wearing a glittery purple gown with a beaming smile across her face sent me a personalized message. I didn’t know her. I didn’t met her. I haven’t encountered her.
Although I joined several groups and messaged some people whom I think I could ask for some help in knowing and being in the beauty pageant industry. All I got were either rejects or seenzoned or just no feedback. I said to myself, well if they didn’t like me, they should have just said it. Than making me look like a fool waiting and bugging them for some piece of feedback as to what they think of me. I thought, I deserve to know. So I’ll know where I’ll improve myself on or if I really had a shot in this.
To tell you the truth, it was never my dream; not in my wildest fantasies to be in a beauty pageant. It was never my intention. It was never my plan. Back when I was a very vocal person with a heavy load of bad temper, I thought beauty pageants were a waste of time. Because all they do was be plastic (saying and doing things but they don’t actually mean it) and just look all beautiful and “classy”. I thought it was a waste of time and money. For one will be measured according to her beauty. I thought we are all beautiful in our own ways. So to be judged by appearance of what’s in was really off putting to me.
The standard of beauty in our area and in that time, I wasn’t able to see and understand their reasons for calling those girls, ladies and women beautiful. I can’t put my finger into it then. I hated the idea of beauty pageants then.
Well, the reason for this will may or may not be shared any time soon or the time being for the matter. Let’s just put it this way. I had constant experiences that made me so angry with some people. But with that, it also led me to be very determined with my dreams. I may not have everything like most people had back then, but it didn’t stop me living my life. I somehow envy those people having awesome and true friends. That they can be true to who they are. That they can be understood and not judged when their friends heard something about them. That they are remembered during their birthdays. That they can just hangout and not do anything or not talk about anything. That they all can achieve their dreams, goals, aspirations and dares without the feeling of whatever negativity it may come to. That no matter who they are; who their families are, they accepted each other. That even if they don’t see each other and not talk, nothing changed. Let’s put it in a way that I was and am not very lucky to have that kind of aspect and in turn I get to experience all the negativity it have had to offer. Funny as to how I dissect this aspect but they have that one aspect that I aspire and they call me things for having what makes me human and what makes me sane. Okay. Let’s put one aspect out. I was bullied back then (younger years; the earliest memory was when I was in Pre- School) because they said I was ugly. Too ugly to have friends. Too ugly to be liked back by my crush. Too ugly to be nice. Too ugly to feel things. Too ugly to be rich. Too ugly to be noticed. Too ugly to be successful. Too ugly to have dreams and aspirations. Frankly, it was not just some random people. Some were a part of my family. Some were a part of my relatives. Some were my so called friends. I even had fallen off a still “kalesa” in school while playing with my friends back in Kinder. I hit my head on the floor so hard that I couldn’t move. But because I don’t want my so called friends then to go away from me, I thought of excuses. Although I informed my friends about it. They didn’t believe me. The leader of our group said I was lying. Nobody believed in me back then whenever I share it. Not even our Teachers then. Because as they say, my so called friends were good students. They will never do such a thing. But my head really hurt. Our Class Adviser said that I can go to the clinic but shouldn’t push the reason as to why I had pains in and on my head whenever I was being asked. Back then, being beautiful in their eyes was the best way to be recognize and trusted… And now, the cat is out of the bag. Well, sort of. We all know now my reasons back then.
So, you see. I never pushed the idea of pageantry. I like watching it. I like people talking about it. But me being in it will never be a part of who I am.
Then around 2017- 2018, one of our security guards in my other job remarked that I should be a beauty queen because I was very pretty and nice. One of our office janitors in my other job also said the same sentiment. But this janitor highlighted the fact in his eyes that I was very, very, very nice and kind*.
*share the actual comment in a way
The security guard is an old resident guard in Quezon City. Back when I was with one of my idols in the entertainment industry under Public Relations. The janitor is also an old timer in Makati City. Back when I was with the events and corporate management team. The two men didn’t know each other. The two men are old timers in the past companies I have had in my life. Both of them said the exact same thing in different years. They both said it out of the blue with repeated instances. I was doing Open Photo Shoots back then. I was already doing one aspect that the guys in our school back then said I couldn’t become; because I was ugly. I was already doing a dare to myself and to them. That I can be a Model. I was already serious and enjoying that aspect already. Then these two old timers came in and mentioned about beauty pageants randomly and out of the blue. Then all of my beliefs back then. Everything. All came rushing in. I am beautiful in my own way. But can they also see it? Can I be heard in this aspect? Will they accept me? Will I see it if I tried? Year pasts and I just heard an information about pageants that caters to who I actually am. I looked for ways to know about it. I researched. I asked around. I messaged people around.
Then all of the sudden, groups started accepting me. Some people in the beauty pageant industry started talking to me. I got replies with the how to’s and whatnot. But in the end, they all said they aren’t the right key people who can help me. They referred me to our National Directors in my category. But nothing happened. These key people in my category didn’t mind me. When I got back to those who responded to me then, they all said that if I didn’t get anything, either it means they are busy or that they didn’t like me. I even went far to bugging and begging them to respond. So I will know. So I can improve. So I can grow. So I can see. Nothing. Not even a single reply.
Then the Founder of Miss Uniworld messaged me on Messenger. Upon looking up her profile, we only have 3 guys in mutual on Facebook. All of which are handsome young Models in different countries. As I said, I was into my modeling journey dare. So I surrounded myself with my fellow Models and some people in the modeling industry. I even forgotten about the idea our security guard and janitor remarked me with. Then this wonderful woman randomly messaged me and invited me to take part in her pageant. I was hesitant but finally gave in. I tired. She loved everything about me and so I am the chosen representative in the Philippines. I’m very much grateful to the Founder of Miss Uniworld; because she saw something that I never thought I could be in. She came in a time I was about to give up… just a bit more rejections and negative experiences. She came in at a perfect time that I wasn’t expecting. She saw something in me that made me realize a lot more that I am and I can be a living proof of what I think, say and do #pushingboundaries, #youonlyliveonce. That someone out there can see my potential and I’m not just this and that. In my small frame, I am a roaring lion dressed as a cat. She and the owner of Inspitale are among the few who’ve seen it. They saw it when I have moments wherein I am hiding the total set of who I am. I learned to hide my whole self to the world because of my experiences back then. I got used and abused. I also see the dramatic changes of some people when I share myself with them. Yes. I have baggages. But don’t get me wrong, these are the learnings I had learned in the past that taught me things as to why I am the person you encounter everyday. I’m very much, all the more proud of my scars, flaws and shortcomings. Because of these, I have an awesome balance of dares, #youonlyliveonce and #feellivelife. I try to do my best, do and be a good person no matter what.
Hi! My name is Catherine Roque. You can call me Cathy. I’m Miss Uniworld Philippines 2020. I am representing the Republic of the Philippines in the Miss Uniworld international pageant. We will move forward and onward!
Now, you’ve read the back story as to why I am like that and you now know about my Miss Uniworld aspect. Next will be my life in other beauty pageants.
I am also vying through other beauty pageants that I was been invited several times. All thanks to Miss Uniworld; somehow they (other beauty pageants) are already seeing my beauty*. But I will not talk about which other beauty pageants I’ll be joining as a candidate and representative of the Philippines. I will not also share which beauty pageant asked me to be their National Director. These will all be revealed once it is actually announced and ongoing.
But the next that I’ll be sharing with you about is my life with… Miss Universal Queen as… one of the Member Advisers*. I help in the small aspects of the event like ticket sales, overall stage looks, targets, sponsors, posters, proof reading and my baby… I am the one responsible for…
Calling all Filipino Fashion Designers!
We want you to take part in our international beauty pageant and shine with us. Together let’s break the stigma of mental health. Hand in hand we can survive and live in this! We don’t mind whether you are known or a newbie. We don’t mind whether you’re from an organization or a sole flier. Let’s help each other. Let’s uplift each other. Little by little, let’s make our dreams come true. Little by little, let’s continue being the dream and living it. Little by little let’s make this world a better place. One person at a time. One event at a time.
We already have seven (7) wonderful Filipino Fashion Designers. Some are not members of certain organizations or associations. Some are members of the Fashion Designers Association of the Philippines.
I’m very much grateful for them and the owner of this international beauty pageant because I’m given a chance to give back. Which is highly vital for me. They gave me a chance, now it’s time for me to pass it on.
Let’s support each other! As one, we can do this! That in all things, God may be glorified!
With all these, I’m very much grateful to all of you who’ve reached this far of my shared real life story. I hope I could give enough real non toxic positivity and hope in you. Keep dreaming. Keep believing. Keep doing. One day, with all the rejections and tears, you’ll also find that rainbow with endless pots of gold.
I am allowed to join these pageants. Our Chairperson and CEO of the government body that I am working with in the Philippines knows about these. She allowed me and is very supportive. We already had our talk.
There was also a part of my much younger years that I had a female bully who tormented me from Nursery to Grade 6. She physically, emotionally, mentally caused me pain. When we had our talks, it was because she viewed me as someone too cute and too happy. I later learned from her ex boyfriend who happens to be her best friend that she had a rough life at home. She too was having pains; from her own family. I had seesaw experiences with people seeing my physical appearance. Back then, she was the only one who’ve seen my beauty but with that reason as well she bullied me.
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