My name is Ange Eely. I was diagnosed with A.S at the age of 12, and told I would be in a wheelchair by the time I was 20. Well I am currently 35 and not in that wheelchair quite yet. I never accepted my diagnoses and fought hard to continue my normal teenage life, playing competitive sports, being a typical teenager, just maintaining a healthy regiment of eating, exercise, stretching and being positive, as well as a redundant amount of anti inflammatories.
Now 35, I have 2 very active boys (currently 14 and 11) who are my everything. They have grown with me thru my disease, and as a single mom, are my saviours. During flairs, they cook, clean and maintain their lives as best as they can always making sure there momma is ok. For this I am very grateful. I worked fulltime, and went to school fulltime getting my degree in counselling psyc, but was quickly put on a full disability 4 years ago, because my bad times over took my good times. This in a weird way as made me a better mother and daughter. While i am often asked how it is I am so positive with all things given my answer is simple…’life is to short to let little things get you down.’ We all have our bad days, we all have our good days, but during the bad times i know with the pain killers i can get comfortable, with stretching i can limit my down time, and within a few weeks i am back to me. I get frustrated defiantly, but i laugh at the times because being depressed, being pissed off and feeling like the world has done me wrong isn’t going to change a thing. We are given what we are given and should make do the best we can in the situation.
I am currently on 8 vials of remicade every 6 weeks along with 50 ml of methotrexate every week. This regiment hasn’t been a saviour as I still have flairs, but has given me back more good days then bad. This disease has affected my right ankle, knee, both hips, both sac joints (now fused) my tailbone, pelvic bone and i have 3 verts fused half way up my spine. I have also been diagnosed with medically induced lupus (because of the meds) and have colitis. Yet, you can still find me going for long walks, swimming and throwing the ball around with my boys during my good times.
If i can say anything to anyone who is reading this and who has been recently diagnosed and feels like their world has just been shattered. Don’t. Work with your doctors, until something fits with you, be persistent, keep a log of what you eat, what you do, the weather, your stress levels, every tings tinker or stiffness you get. Be open with how you feel and keep those around you in the know of what’s going on. Having a strong support system around you in crucial. Educated your friends and family so they understand. Most importantly have dr’s that understand you, understand your disease, and have a supportive ear. These all make a huge difference in how we can live with our disease and not have it live life for us.
Kisses n crabcakes, and all the best in your journey