When I first found out I was going to New York, I couldn’t comprehend the thought. Growing up in a small town has a big impact on your mindset, so I was full of emotions. If you’ve never been to New York, you imagine it as Hollywood portrays it. The taxicabs and colossal buildings, the diversity and massive number of pedestrians walking with brisk pace. I was ready for the culture shock of my life. I someday want to become a country music star, and this life-changing voyage helped me understand how to make it possible.
Despite the ignorant and naive teenage stage, I’ve always been a girl with dreams with something deep down inside that drives myself to try anything and everything to get to where I want to be in life. I do confess to have had doubt in my appearance, but I can’t say it was to the extreme of giving up. I convinced myself to attend the Barbizon School of Modeling and Acting auditions held locally at South Padre Island. I put on my best smile, walked into that room beaming with confidence, and did nothing but be myself. For the next 24 hours, I never felt more anxious, and my heart never beat so fast, eager for that one phone call of acceptance. When it finally rang, and heard the assuring voice, I had no idea of what opportunities I had before me. I ended up graduating from the school, continuing my classes in Dallas, and was well on my way to New York City for the Modeling Association of America International Competition. “Is this really happening to me?”, I thought. My parents were sacrificing so much for me and my friends and family worked so hard with me to get that sum of money I needed for this amazing trip. So much positive energy surrounded my senses like never before, and I knew something big was going to happen. It was my first plane ride and boy were my knees shaking. I overcame my fear, and when I stepped out of the airport, for that split second, I imagined how Columbus felt on his destined voyage to the New World. This was my New World, and had so much to discover. Frank Sinatra’s classic tune was the theme song, and I was the lead actress, ready to dazzle my audience. I left the competition with honorable mention in photo-posing and TV commercial, 2nd runner-up in soap opera, and the winner of the talent competition. Small town girl Madelyn Vallejo came to the big city and impressed the elite. From this door of opportunity came many more. I became apart of the Radio Disney Superstars in Dallas, opened up for the Jonas Brothers, and got a paid internship with Barbizon to teach the classes locally.
Out of all the excitement and fun from my trip that I discovered, I discovered so much more about myself. I never knew how strong willed I was, and how determined I could be. When you discover a new adventure or journey, you discover a new you. I learned that as long as you show people you’re confident about yourself, including your appearance, they will have confidence in you. As I continue driving on the road to become a music star, I will take in all I learned from this life-changing trip and encourage all young people to take that chance and make that sacrifice, because nothing is more important than fulfilling your dreams.
Dear Reader: This page may contain affiliate links which may earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase. Our independent journalism is not influenced by any advertiser or commercial initiative unless it is clearly marked as sponsored content. As travel products change, please be sure to reconfirm all details and stay up to date with current events to ensure a safe and successful trip.