My name is Bree Trejo. I have been battling pain since the age 16. I was always told growing pains or scoliosis. As I got older more symptoms started popping up. I was told I couldn’t have children but they could not tell me why. I now have 4 children. In my 20’s my teeth literally crumbled in my mouth. Still no answer why it was happening. On the outside I looked healthy but on the inside a storm was brewing. In my late 20’s the pain in my joints became worse. I was told it was caused by depression and was put on an anti-depressant. In 2012 I was a full-time mom and student. But my health took a turn for the worse and I was in and out of the hospital a lot. Still no answers. Couldn’t figure out what was happening. My body was just in overload. Was checked for Cancer due to enlarged lymphnods. After seeing a great number of doctors ALL telling me nothing was wrong with me and maybe I should seek mental health. Or that I was an F3- Female, fat and forty. Not explaining to me how I gained 40 pounds in a matter of weeks when I was not over eating or eating unhealthy. I was on gluten free diet due to inflammation in my gut. I was finally diagnosed with Epstein-Barr. Which is what they think might have triggered the silent HLA-B27 into active status. I was finally diagnosed with Ankylosing Spondylitis in Nov 2014. Since then they have added a couple more autoimmune diseases to my list. It has been a long hard process but I never gave up. Even when I wanted too. I still have a lot of symptoms but have hope for help with finally getting to see a Rheumatologist in August and try out some biologics. I had never heard of AS or knew what it was. I did so much research and became a member to so many support groups. I had a hard time understanding it myself let alone explain it to friends and family. Some understand it now and some will just never get it. There were so many times I wanted to just give up and end it all but my AS family wouldn’t allow it. They were there for me with late night calls, sobbing phone calls and irate text and emails. They always responded and talked me away from the edge. For them I am thankful to still be here. I have accepted my roll with AS and am committed to bringing awareness to this nasty disease. I am a part of Walk AS One and Have a walking team called Perseverance Warriors. We walk the Walk Your AS Off walk each year. We also walk in parades to bring awareness. Thank you for taking the time to read my story.
Oregon, United States of America