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HLA-B27

The blood tests came back positive

My doctor called and said the blood tests came back positive. He was sending me to a Rheumatologist. He said I had a genetic marker that is "strongly associated with Ankylosying Spondylitis" and I needed a specialist.

I was unprepared for my body betraying me. I slowly backed out of weekly hikes with girlfriends because I walked slowly and in pain, I avoided the stairs to quiet the screaming of my hips and knees, my beloved yard become someone else's responsibility to weed and tend, and my house was turned over to a housekeeper. I talked with my husband incessantly about medications and options that would take away my diagnosis and let me return to my former self.

Denial is a strong thing and I spent thousands of dollars on massage, acupuncture, naturopaths, physical therapy, medications and doctors desperately searching for a cure. There is no cure.

Eventually I became bored with myself and my constant focus on my body and slowly came to the realization I did not want my life be controlled by this disease. Some days that is easier than others. My life will never be the same. I have a new normal. One phone call shifted my world leaving a message that it would never be the same again. While "AS" has taken a lot from me, it still left me a life. A life to live and love in. I choose that.

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