Sierra Sandison was crowned Miss Idaho in early July. Sierra is a beautiful young woman who has worked very hard to achieve her dream…to compete in the Miss America pageant. I first heard about Sierra less than 24 hours after she was crowned. A photo came across my facebook feed that caught my attention, and the attention of thousands of people.
Sierra in her bikini…wearing her insulin pump.
You got it…Sierra is a type 1 diabetic and proud of it. That now infamous photo of Sierra, her bikini, and her pump has been trending on twitter, facebook, Google+ and has been covered in the national media.
She has started a wildly popular #showmeyourpump campaign where she has asked diabetics to send pictures proudly sporting their insulin pump. The first time she used the hashtag was when she tweeted her bikini picture.
And yet in many interviews Sierra states she is much more than her disease. She is more than just a pageant girl. She is a normal girl who happens to have diabetes and who happens to compete in pageants.
“diabetes does not define me. Your diabetes, or whatever your struggle or disability is, does not define you either. I am also not just “a pageant girl”, or anything close to a supermodel. I am a completely average, normal girl, who likes to sing, and thought that entering the Miss America Organization might give me opportunities to serve my community, while inspiring me to stay healthy and improve my public speaking skills.”
With this one hashtag Sienna has been able to inspire thousands of diabetics, and others, to be proud of whatever they have in their life that doesn’t “measure up” to today’s beauty standards. Sienna is wise beyond her years!
Will’s Way is so proud to support Sierra…both the person Sierra is and the diabetic activist she has become. We will be rooting for her in the Miss America pageant and beyond. We are equally proud that Sierra supports us and recognizes the great work we here at Will’s Way are trying to accomplish.
Great post! I wasn’t aware of this happening and it should be a great story of encouragement, not just for those with Type 1 diabetes, but also girls everywhere. Sierra is a role model for sure!