Being black and living with T1D can feel isolated and lonely at times. There are days when I feel like I need to advocate and use my platform to spread awareness on T1D; While other days, I want to advocate and spread awareness on the adversitises that I have experienced because of the color of my skin.
Growing up, I struggled learning to love my skin because not many people on TV or in Magazines looked like me. Then, when I was diagnosed with T1D, I once again did not see or know many people who looked like me. This time, I refused to allow something that I had no control over affect how I saw myself — so I had to embrace and accept it.
We don’t choose the skin we were born in and we didn’t choose to get T1D. The best we can do is advocate and hope that others can somewhat understand our experiences. It is not easy living in a society where you feel like you are constantly fighting to be heard.
I could not contain my excitement when Beyond Type 1 included me in their spot the drop campaign, I felt heard, valued, and seen. I want more people who look like me to be heard, accepted in their skin, and feel comfortable in their T1D.
As always, I encourage EVERYONE to share their story because you never know whose life your story might help, inspire, or motivate. I also want to encourage more black diabetics to speak up and share their stories, your story matters all of the time, not just for Juneteenth/ blm movement. I see you, I hear you, and I respect you.
Learn more about Tiana and her amazing story on her Instagram: @tianacooks