My Long and Continuing Journey

Hi. I'm 45 years old and I have been dealing with lower back pain since I was 14 or so. I remember going to the chiropractor as a teenager several times a week up until I graduated. I had what I called "leg aches" as a child.

My parents would have to rub my legs to ease the pain until I'd fall asleep. I'm not sure if that's related to all of my arthritis now. I had to leave my job in 2010 due to having spinal disc fusion surgery after I had worked there for nearly 20 years.

The journey continues

I tried to work at Walmart, but after only one month, my back and hips hurt so badly that I couldn't walk. It took me two hours to get home, which was only about 5 miles away. I have arthritis so bad in my hips that I need total hip replacement on both.

I have degenerative disc disease in my back, arthritis in my SI joints, I've had my right hip cleaned out and my right heel spur removed and Achilles tendon repaired. I have TMJ. I have IBS. I have chronic dry eyes. The list goes on and on.

Hoping for a better life

Oh, and my mom has AS but wasn't diagnosed until two years ago. She's now way past the point of having any help from medications, other than strong painkillers, and she's wheelchair-bound. I'm hoping to get the proper diagnosis and medical treatment to avoid the life she's endured because of AS.

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