Re: Looking for lay-opinions, please!
Jenny, I can't thank you enough for your time and input. You validated my thoughts, that is exactly what I needed. I've ached for so long and it happened so gradually that I honestly think that I have no idea how bad I really feel. My whole life I have never been a person who goes to the doctor, in fact I suffered with gallstones for MANY years because I'd always give up before I got to a resolution. I've been close to giving up several times now and just "live" with it. I don't because it kills me to think just a year ago I was an athlete - in excellent condition - and now I can't get up from a chair without a pregnant pause as I stand to collect my joints in order to move. I lost 140 pounds, I should feel AWESOME and instead I feel HORRIBLE.
Thank you for helping me to stay on track. I'll get a referral to a rheumatologist - a good one - and I'll stick with this to a resolution.
Incidentally, I did go see that rheumatologist over the summer...the one I made an appointment with in January of last year. He poked me, pulled on my legs, asked me some questions, and told me I didn't have RA. No labs, nothing. That would explain why the ankle-ortho rolled his eyes and told me there was a reason he is the only rheumatologist in town who accepts patients without a referral. The rest of them won't even talk to me - my doctor's office has to call directly and make the appointment for me. I just hope I don't have another 6 month wait.