Exploring Pageantry with Ronali Amatya
The world of pageantry, has always has been perceived with mixed feelings. It is easy to speak about something and turn the spark into a wildfire. But the journey is best foretold by the individuals who goes through this great path. We sat down with Miss
Being someone who has had the experience of being in multiple pageants, which one would you say was the most memorable for you and why?
My first pageant experience was an international pageant Miss Eco International 2017 and at the time I was very raw with no idea about anything. I was overwhelmed because I was away from home but I did my research and indeed worked very hard for it. It was memorable for me because throughout my entire journey, I had my mom and my sister supporting me. Through every step and every judgement, they were my rock and when Nepal didn’t make it to the top 20 , I was disheartened because they had flown all the way to Egypt for me and I felt that I could not make them proud but even then they supported me constantly, giving me the motivation I needed. At the end, when I was given the title of Miss Congeniality, amongst all those crowd, I could see them with such happy faces, probably happier than me, waving their hands carrying the little flag of Nepal. It just meant the world to me.
Who or what was your inspiration for participating in Miss Nepal?
There wasn’t anyone or anything particular to be honest but from the very beginning, without even knowing the real world of Miss Nepal, I had interest in participating. Before Miss Nepal, I had participated in Model Hunt and I wanted to explore beyond it, I would say I was curious to see how different the world of pageantry is from modeling.
A lot of my friends would suggest me to participate in Miss Nepal, simply because I was the tallest one in my family or in my friend’s circle. The way they objectified beauty pageant and outer appearance together seemed very unsatisfying to me. My curiosity grew even more and I wanted to learn about this world which is why I took the step and participated.
Also, when I came back from Miss Eco International, I felt this gap in my heart as if something was missing, and that my voice and opinions were not able to reach a larger audience, from my journey as a contestant and as Miss Nepal International, I feel that void was filled and all the experience and learning helped me to employ my title and inspired me more to reach out.
How was the journey in Miss Nepal different from the pageant you participated before?
I don’t think it would be appropriate to compare a national level and an international level pageant but the perception that I had about Miss Nepal turned out to be very different because the journey here is unpredictable. I was fortunate to meet and learn from such great personalities, people I admired watching on TV and learning about in newspapers. It was fascinating to see them in front of me, guiding me and I feel like I got the opportunity to learn and experience things beyond my expectations in a very limited time.
Most memorable moment in Miss Nepal.
Besides the crowning, I think the most memorable moment has to be the closed camp in Dhulikhel. During the first few weeks, all of us were timid and everyone was new so we would interact less often, keep to ourselves. We were not allowed to use our mobile phones at the time so we started interacting and made new friends. It was also very hectic yet exciting as we would have to face new challenges everyday but together, we were learning something new, teaching each other and that was the best part for me.
Being raised with such supportive family, how much do you think their support has to do with shaping in how you performed at these pageants and who you are as a person?
I think the biggest credit I would give is to the support I got from my family and friends, specially my family. Their support was the driving force that gave me the constant energy to push myself at times when I felt low and needed somebody to tell me that everything will be okay. I remember that when I was on a healthy diet plan, my mom would make sure I ate healthy food and on time so she would always pack my lunch and come to drop it off. Even when I needed anything, she would be there in a blink of an eye whether it was in Miss Eco International or Miss Nepal, just so that I would not face any difficulties. I feel blessed
How do you keep yourself motivated in difficult and stressful situations?
Actually, I find myself the best when I am under stress. There is a saying “Diamonds are made under pressure” and I can really relate to it. But I am human and during extreme stressful situations, even when I know I am doing the right thing, I like to express and deal so I share things with people I trust and need reassurance from my loved ones to calm me. On other days, I try and meditate and also listen to calm music before I sleep.
What is your opinion on the stigma that is related to beauty pageants?
Compared to before, I feel like now, a lot of negativity related to beauty pageants has stemmed away. Everyone is entitled to their opinion and no matter which sector you belong to, there is always a good and a bad side to it. But before people raise their opinions or comment, I think it is rather important that they should do their research before judging anyone or anything. Even when an information is passed, they should make sure that it is from a reliable source.
It is very easy to judge from the outside and until and unless I was a part of The Hidden Treasure journey, my perception was completely different as well but the more I got involved and experienced it for myself, I saw a change in my own perception and I feel it is the same with others. It depends on people and how they choose to perceive but if it’s any platform that boosts you, gives you the network you can utilize and helps you learn, then it is always a good thing.
As the time comes for you to hand down your title to a new Miss International, what kind of emotions are you feeling?
When I think about it, there is no particular emotion because every time I think, I go through an emotional whirlwind. One moment I feel that every good thing must come to an end and the very next second I am like “Oh!! My god it is ending and I get all stressed. But I am equally excited that my successor will get this wonderful opportunity to experience the same feeling that I did and I will be able to guide her and motivate her for through her endeavors.
What are your future plans? Is there any sector you would like to work or specialize on?
Every time someone asks me what about my future, I go blank for a second(laughs) but since I completed my Bachelors in Business Management and my father himself is a business man, I was and still am inclined towards business and have been getting involved, and trying to learn about it. Being a part of a beauty pageant helped me pave that way to build connections and I hope that through this network, I can explore more in the business world.
On the other hand, I just want to travel. I have always been a free soul and if given an opportunity, I would travel my entire life(laughs). I am someone who likes to keep everything balanced and taking my body, mind and soul parallel. I’ve always had the business door open for me but I realized after my graduation that I wanted to explore my avenues so I diverted from that path for a while. I have a keen interest in fitness too and I have been training myself so that I can open a fitness center. It would be a way for me to take my business and my passion side by side. I have also been collaborating with an initiative called My Emotions Matter and creating ideas on how I can contribute and utilize my title, my voice and my opinions to spread awareness about emotional health.
What advice would you like to give the upcoming Miss Nepal contestants?
Don’t have any expectations and be prepared for any random situations that come your way. Learn to persevere through the stress, as this journey is unpredictable yet beautiful. If you want to do great wonders, be smart to utilize the connections you build and maintain them and uphold the trust that you have earned from people. As for my successor I would be giving her a secret advice session (laughs) and my ultimate suggestion to everyone is “Be yourself and you won’t have to fake it to make it”.