Spotlight On: Tosin Ola, aka the Sickle Cell Warrior
Active in the Sickle Cell Community since: June 2007
Occupation: I’m a registered nurse. There are 2 main reasons I became a nurse. The first was to pay it forward: all the help, support and care that I had received during my sickle cell crises’. The second was to counteract all the negativity that people with chronic pain deal with in the medical setting.
What do you do when you’re not raising awareness about SCD? Usually I’m doing this one way or another. When I’m not at work, on the phone talk to a sickle cell warrior, or online doing stuff related to sickle cell; I’m spending time with my fiancé, planning our wedding and researching grad schools.
How did you get started in the Sickle Cell Disease Community online?
I got into the sickle cell online community because I was looking for some information, encouragement and support for dealing with the condition. In the first week, I joined a few sickle cell forums online. However, I felt like a stranger and couldn’t really relate to the dichotomy with the cheery “all is well because of God’s grace” messages and the pitiful “my life sucks because I have sickle cell” messages. I scoured Google and Technorati for a sickle cell blog. I pretty much typed in “sickle cell blog” into the word search and came up with just a few results. The few that I found had just a couple of posts, as if the bloggers had good intentions but never really got into updating frequently.
A common theme between the SCD forums I visited and the SCD blogs that I checked out that day was the lightness. It seemed to me that the creators were hiding the dark, ugly side of sickle cell; and avoiding those difficult topics, which was what I longed to read about and connect with someone on. To fill the void that I couldn’t find, Sickle Cell Can Kiss my A$$ was born.