Kim Rowe and Ryan
My name is Kim Rowe, I am 50 yrs old and I live in Penticton, in beautiful British Columbia, Canada.
I have had joint/back pain since my childhood, really, but over the years I had always blamed my symptoms on other things such as pregnancies, packing children around, etc. (As a child/teen, I was constantly “spraining” my ankles”). I blamed my bad neck on a whip-lash I received from a bad car accident in 1987. Then I began thinking “old-age” was creeping up on me sooner than it should, sort of thing, etc.
My 2 oldest boys (24 and 22), had terrible trouble with their feet/legs/hips & back since their teens. The oldest, only 24, is now in very bad shape, he’s like a 98 year old man most days – he was diagnosed with AS two years ago – I KNOW my middle son has it, but he hasn’t been diagnosed, as yet. I’m just waiting to see if I’ve also passed it onto my youngest (16 yr old) son 😦
I had gotten SO accustomed to my joint pain, (every joint in my body), my eye pain/tenderness & photo phobia, my bowel issues, etc., that I really didn’t think too much about them, it was all just part of my life. I did go to a doctor for one symptom or another over the years, but it was always brushed off; never did get any “answers” – probably mostly due to the fact that I, myself, didn’t think to mention ALL the symptoms all together. 😦
I am still waiting to be diagnosed. My Rheumatologist diagnosed me with definite Fibromyalgia, and she says, based on my x-rays, I do have arthritis in several parts of my back, but unfortunately, she is “one of those” Rheumys who thinks if you are not completely FUSED from neck all the way down, then you do not have AS. She told me, “I am not convinced you have AS”. Well, I am NOT convinced I DON’T have it…in fact I KNOW I do. I am scheduled to have an MRI done and I am hoping from that, it will give the proof needed, one way or the other. (I am HLA B27 pos, although I don’t think that makes any difference)
In all those years, I had children to raise, full-time employment to work, house, dogs, everything & everyone to take care of, and I just pushed on and did it. At this point in my life, I am finding the pain & flare-ups more unbearable every day.
I am very proud of my sons in that EVERY DAY, although it’s painful and tiring for them, (they’ve aged well beyond their years), they just keep pushing through – they both work full-time, in jobs requiring them to be on their feet all day long and they don’t complain…they just push on through one day to the next. Their attitude, (I know I definitely helped to instill it in them), is that this is just the way it is, we have to work, so we just make the best of it!
I was really happy to find The Faces site on FB – such amazingly wonderful people on there and although I know I don’t contribute very much, I get SO MUCH out of it, knowing there’s huge support from everyone there 🙂 ❤
British Columbia, Canada