I am Joe McGinley a 43 year old stay @ home Dad. I am married to my married to my wonderful wife for 13 years (14 in November). I have 3 kids an 18 year old from a previous relationship & 2 wild boys95&10) with my wife. I have been very active since before I can remember. Always involved in sports or camping. Basically anything outdoors I was into trying it.
Throughout my school days I was an athlete. Although I am only 5’8” I never let my lack of height stop my drive to compete. I was playing A.Y.S.O. and Little League through my Jr. High days. Upon entering HS I finally got to play Football. I enjoyed the competition and the physical competition. I lettered in 4 sports in HS and my mind was geared into playing sports.
I entered college at the ripe old age of 17 and still only being 5’8” I was not exactly the tower of power on the team, I was actually the shortest player on the 80 man squad. Playing center and Defensive guard I really wasn’t the pick of the coaches to be a starter. I worked my ass off and ended and by the time summer camp was over I had gained the spot as the backup center. With 2 weeks before season started I ruptured 2 discs in my lower back and was out of luck to play football again.
At this point I am a 17 year old that now has a bad back and can’t do what I love. PLAY SPORTS. I decided I wasn’t going to take that opinion from the doctor and I started playing other sports. I found a love of Hockey and stuck with it. At this point my back was in pain 7 days a week but I wasn’t going to stop due to a little pain. So now I am 18 and back into a sport. I played roller hockey for a few years until I got taken out by someone & it completely blew out the disc in my back. 3 days later I was on the operating table having a partial discectomy.
Fast forward 4 months of therapy and I bought ice hockey gear and wouldn’t look back. I am now 21 and playing ice hockey. I played until the age of 37 when I had to have double carpal tunnel surgery which basically put me down for about 8 months. Between the ages of 21 & 38 I broke my collar bone, separated my collarbone from my sternum, had 2 knee surgeries, 3 hernia surgeries, 3 concussions & 1 throat contusion.
September of 2007 my back started having severe pain to a point I couldn’t walk without extreme pain. When I went into the Doctor he said it was muscular and gave me flexiral and told me to rest. 6 days later and NO relief in sight I went back to Dr. He then decided to do an X-Ray. After viewing the films he came out and said I don’t see anything wrong. I see where you had your fusion surgery but nothing out of the ordinary. I stopped him there and said I didn’t have fusion surgery and his jaw dropped. He asked me when it fused then, I said you tell me, you are my Dr. LOL!!! At that point it was like a light bulb went off and he said I think I know what’s up. He ordered blood work and back came the positive HLAB-27 gene. That was the day that my life was turned upside down and things started making sense. The weird pains the constant flus and colds. Feeling sick half the time or exhausted from doing nothing. Since the diagnosis I have had Pneumonia 6 times, hospitalized twice for it.
So there is my story in a nutshell. I will add more as I can. Thank you for reading my story. Thank you Cookie for all your work.
California United States of America