My favorite word has always been "serendipity." Serendipity is about making fortunate discoveries by chance, finding something great that you weren't specifically searching for. It's my favorite word because it sounds beautiful, and I believe it is serendipity that has led me to where I am today.
I am from the small town of Warrenton, Virginia. My first trip to New York City was in 2002 for a figure-skating competition. I envisioned New York full of busy people, rushing taxis and towering buildings. I was nervous about the trip, never knowing that intimidating city would become my motivation as well as my home.
As tourists, my mom and I were nervous to take the subway, not being quite sure of how it worked, so we walked everywhere. After a long day of competition, we decided on an impulse to take a late-night visit to pay our respects at Ground Zero, it being the first anniversary of 9/11 that day.
We got on a bus, not knowing exactly where it was going to take us, but ended up at the beautiful lights representing the towers. There were firetrucks all around, and the firemen and crowd alike came together in support of each other.
This serendipitous moment changed me. After this, New York wasn't scary. I saw it for what it really was — a place full of the strongest and truest people I have ever met. After that trip, I knew where I wanted to be, and like so many others I set my aspirations to being a part of the city.
The biggest role serendipity has played in my life was making me a part of the Flight Crew. It was something that was so unexpected, yet I realize I had worked my whole life for this season. That's why serendipity is my favorite word. You can be headed in one direction, and in an instant some unexpected luck can change your life forever.
Now my family and I can ride subways with the best of them, and I am humbled and proud to call myself a New York Jets Flight Crew Cheerleader.
Wishing all my fellow Jets fans a serendipitous New Year.