Art

Artist Spotlight: Rana

Hey, I’m Rana!
I’m 25 years old and I was born and raised in New York. I am a black disabled artist. I mainly work with digital art on my iPad and create art about chronic illness, mental health, and self-love.

Here’s a little bit of my story:
I was gifted with the talent for art all my life. However, I never took it seriously until I became disabled in April 2019. After dealing with chronic burning pain in my knees  since I was a teenager and not being taken seriously by doctors or loved ones, I was diagnosed with Osteoarthritis in both of my knees at the age of 24. Shortly after, I was diagnosed with Fibromyalgia and PCOS (Polycystic Ovary Syndrome), with a possible Endometriosis diagnosis. Throughout my whole life, I always felt like something was “wrong” with my body. I always felt like it wasn’t running how it was supposed to. When I was 18, I was diagnosed with major depression and extreme anxiety. I had a pretty rough childhood. I was surrounded by poverty, abuse, and trauma. After being diagnosed with mental health issues, my doctors started to blame my mental health for my physical health. They dismissed my pain and said that it’s all in my head or it was just from my depression. I knew there was something more. The last few months before my diagnoses, I was in and out of urgent care, calling out of work, and dealing with a new crazy symptoms everyday. That’s when I got my diagnoses and had to let go of my dream job as a chef. I worked in the food service industry since I was 17, was in food management, food service, and I was even a line cook training to be a chef. With that, I got back into art and suddenly it became a huge part of my life again. Art, my loving partner, and this beautiful community of fellow chronic illness is what has kept me going every since I was diagnosed with chronic illness last year.

You can follow me on IG: @rana2.0

You can shop my art prints, stickers, mugs and more merch: here.

You can also shop my clothing collection: here.

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Image: Moody (girl with pink hair wearing a black shirt holding up a peace sign)
 
I’m trying. I’m trying my best everyday to keep it together. To take care of my mind and body the best I can. Chronic illness is tough psychically and mentally. Holding it together everyday is tiring in itself. Sometimes I’m not so great at hiding my pain. And it shows I have chronic illnesses for where there is no cure, I think I can be moody once in a while.

 

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 Image 1 : My Pain is Real (Black girl with pink hair in green sweater)
 
 MY PAIN IS REAL. I’ve been told so many times before that my physical pain isn’t real, that it’s all in my head. Especially as a black girl, POC, doctors are more likely to dismiss me and refuse certain medications and treatments etc. I’m here to tell you fuck what anyone says. Your pain is real. Whether it is mental, physical, emotional, your pain is valid and true and you deserve to heal. It’s okay to ask for help, it’s okay to reach out, it’s okay to see a therapist. Sending love to all my fellow chronic illness warriors. Your pain is real and valid. Whether you have a diagnosis or not. Whether other people can see it or not. 
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Image 2: You’re not lazy, You’re resting (girl with pink hair naked in bed)
 
I’m trying to instill this one in my brain. Learning to listen to my body and honor it’s needs. Resting and taking care of yourself is “productive”, too. Let’s make resting and taking care of yourself the new “norm” okay? 

 

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Image 4: It’s okay to feel a lot (girl with brown hair covered in flowers)
 
It’s okay to feel a lot. We are human, after all. 

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