About two months ago, someone I deeply admire and respect reached out to me, asking if I could give a speech to an audience of approximately 300 people. However, being clever, he didn’t mention the size of the audience knowing that I hadn’t been speaking publicly very often lately.
Despite my health issues, which have been exacerbated by my AS comorbidities, I accepted the invitation. I was nervous but determined to take on the challenge, and I stood in front of those 300 people in a conference room and delivered my speech. It was the first time I had spoken in front of my husband, who was present.
As I recounted my struggles with pain and the fear of losing my mobility and independence, tears welled up in my eyes. But I soldiered on, speaking from the heart and sharing my personal story with the audience.
Afterwards, many people approached me with questions and kind words, and I felt a sense of connection and shared understanding with them.
I wanted to share this experience with all of you who have found your way to my page. No matter how difficult things may seem, don’t be afraid to fight your diseases and pursue the things that bring you joy. We are fortunate to have access to treatments and the ability to do many things, so let’s make the most of our lives.