Just call her Queen Meggan!
If you had told Meggan Michael a few weeks ago that today she would be the Queen Of The Holetown Festival, she probably would have doubted you. But today, this 21-year-old beauty stands just a cut above the rest, adorned with her huge, sparkling crown, bearing a smile that could light up an entire stadium, and still overwhelmed by the reality of it all.
“ . . . I’m still in the shocking stage. Right now, it’s just trying to thank God first for helping me fight through every single week and every day that we had to do stuff. I’m just in a thanking mode right now. I’m very grateful for my victory,” she said while reflecting.
Speaking to Bajan Vibes, a smiling Meggan said she was glad the hard work was now over. She described the experience as overwhelming, but one she would not trade for the world.
“It was a great experience. People see pageantry as glitz and glamour and all pretty, but it honestly is hard work. In terms of time management, knowing what you have to do and so on, it pretty much was on the go. And you have to know what you want to do.
“I prepared mentally first. Physically, I had to be in the gym since October, and I love the gym. I am a dancer also, so I had to go to dance classes; make sure I perfect my technique; and further mentally prepare.
“Sharon Sargeant and Antoine Williams were my chaperones. They really helped me prepare myself. It was probably 80 per cent mental and the rest was 20 per cent. So preparation started from October right up until February 22,” she explained.
Furthermore, she said the knowledge and experience gained from Dancin’ Africa, which she has been a part of since age seven, were quite instrumental in her winning.
“Dancin’ Africa has really taught me self-esteem; stage presence; how you carry yourself; performing skills. And from then on, I could express myself in any way I wanted to –– and dance is the best form to me,” she said.
But initially Meggan had her reservations about entering this her very first pageant –– even after much prompting from her friends.
“I knew six people in the pageant last year, and I attended. My friend Zhane she won and I was saying it was a really good thing what she was doing. My friend Danielle Leslie who was Miss Holetown in 2006, told me, ‘You should really go in the pageant; you are good for it’,” but I was not sure. I said to myself, ‘Oh, I’m not skinny; I’m not a size one,” she said.
But, they were able to convince her to enter.
“I told myself if they saw something in me, there must be something there that has to be explored, and I just went for it. I thought about it really long first. I asked myself, ‘Should I do this? Should I go into it?’. I knew it was going to be a lot of work, and I’m at school; I teach dancing. It was a lot of thinking before I did it; but when I got into it, I loved it,” she said with her charming smile.
She continually offered much thanks to her family and friends for supporting her and giving her the extra push and support when she needed it.
“I honestly was not confident in going into the pageant, but my close friend Marissa, she spoke to be really long, she told me the disadvantages and advantages of being in the pageant. Zhane, as well.
“I think that was probably an advantage over the other girls, because I got moral support from my friends, and I am extremely grateful,” she said
Self-described as a very outgoing person and usually the life of the party, Meggan who is now exposed to the pageantry life, said she would love to be involved in a Caribbean pageant.
“Yes, I would love to be in a Caribbean pageant. I love Caribbean culture and I would love to meet new people, new cultures, meet new girls, see new things and explore more,” the UWI student said.
But as far any of the “larger” pageants are concerned, Meggan said with a shy smile “not yet”.
“There is a stereotype about pageantry. You have to be a certain height, certain size, etcetera. So maybe later down when I get myself in shape physically I would consider others.”
Notwithstanding, Meggan encouraged all those who would be second-guessing themselves about entering pageants to just go for it –– just like she did after all.
“Be the change. You don’t have to be small to make a difference. Pageantry itself isn’t all about glitz and glam; it’s a platform to promote positivity. So if you’re a bigger girl and you have a message to give, then go for it. Be the change. Show them that you can change the image,” the former Christ Church Foundation student said.
Meggan then took the opportunity to thank all those who were instrumental in her journey thus far.
“I would like to thank my biggest help throughout the pageant –– Rochelle Parris from Pink Lemonade. She outfitted me throughout the entire Holetown Festival. She helped me a lot. I thank my friends, family, my main sponsor Jordan & Jordan Associates, my choreographer Keisha Dowridge, my hair sponsors –– everyone. If there is anyone I forgot, you know I love you and I thank you very much,” she said, while noting that “without God I do not know how I would have got though”.