Amid all the exaltation heaped on newly crowned Miss Universe 2015 Pia Wurtzbach and the crucifixion of Steve Harvey, we have not paid much attention to one party who probably was the most gravely affected by the Great Miss Universe Fiasco.
Pia's short-lived sigh of disappointment on being named First Runner-Up and Harvey's utter shock upon realizing his gaffe couldn't compare to what then-newly crowned Miss Colombia Ariadna María Gutiérrez Arévalo must have felt after learning she wasn't the real winner.
It was even reported that Gutierrez was oblivious of the development, and that she needed a translator before she became fully aware of what the commotion was all about.
That's why in all sincerity, we feel you, Miss Colombia.
We understand the pain of being handed something, only to be taken away abruptly—albeit ours is mostly of the tangible kind.
Yours, however, is likely a lifelong dream, something you've envisioned when you were still a little girl, and painstakingly worked hard for on your way to adulthood. Add to that the arduous journey you must've have gone through before you earned the right to represent your homeland.
It's true that our Pia also put in serious effort in her own run, even joining major local pageants for God knows how many times, but at least all her blood, sweat, and tears paid off in the end.
We recognize the enormous burden on your shoulders, Ariadna, being the pride of the whole of Colombia, because that's also how we Pinoys are when it comes to anybody representing us to the world.
We imagine the inconsolable dread your family and your most ardent supporters are feeling right now, the roller coaster of emotions after seeing their prized bet crowned and then suddenly dethroned. We're sure they're very proud of you, no matter what the outcome was.
But most importantly, we're impressed with how you composed yourself and showed poise in such a grand stage, despite being told right smack in the face the worst possible pronouncement a pageant contestant could ever receive.
Most people might disregard the fact that you STILL are the second most precious woman that night, and that such honor deserves the same adulation as the actual victor, more so in your case.
You may have not won the "crown," but you absolutely captured the hearts of many by staying classy and graceful in the face of defeat. You also gained a lot of Filipino admirers by being a true sport.
And for that, all we really want to say is, "Bien hecho, Ariadna!"