Though I’ve lived with Ankylosing Spondylitis, a form of autoimmune arthritis for quite a number of years, I went undiagnosed for most of my life and in spite of not having a name for the condition that plagued me, I was successful in managing the symptoms. I’ve worked as a health, wellness and fitness professional for many years, who manly focused on keeping healthy people healthy and it wasn’t until 2011 that I began to focus on those who suffer from invisible chronic illness as I do. I wanted to share my knowledge and experience of “Holistic Health & Whole Body Wellness“as it relates to Ankylosing Spondylitis, Fibromyalgia and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome CFIDS/CFS/ME, in an effort to help other sufferers successfully manage their symptoms as I had. This is why I began The Positive Pear (about). When initially deciding to dive into the online world of invisible chronic illness & Ankylosing Spondylitis, I had no idea that there was such a huge community of people who also spent their time blogging about their experiences and helping other sufferers in their own way. It was also during this time that I met a few wonderful ladies who worked at drawing attention to this progressive form of autoimmune arthritis. Cookie Hopper through her “Faces of Ankylosing Spondylitis“ Awareness Project and Jennifer Dye Visscher of “The Feeding Edge” when I stumbled across her “Art Apple A Day” awareness project and purchased one of her beautiful art apples. I also met two amazing, kind and very generous ladies. Aqsa Rajput who is such a beautiful person, talented artist and Engineer and Janelle Gingrich-Caudle whose become a very dear friend. Janelle is quite an amazing woman with whom I share much in common. She not only battles A.S. as we all do, but she also advocates on behalf of human rights through her charity: Rivers of New Hope Ministries. I shared this apple with each of these ladies as a show of appreciation for having met each of them. It’s nice having the opportunity to connect with others who share this disease and similar challenges.