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Heading for a brick wall

I am fighting a flare up of my arthritis.  It's like heading for a brick wall with no breaks.  It's coming, but there's absolutely nothing I can do about it.  I'm trying not to let it get me down, but it's so hard.  The fatigue really gets to me and I also see signs of my condition changing for the worst.  Keeping a positive attitude is a challenge.
I have developed lumps in the joints of a few fingers (my left thumb being the worst) & my left knee. They are stiff and painful.  Last night, my knee felt hot with the pain.  This is is all new and it's terrifying.  I now have a bad knee, thumb, hip, shoulder and an inflamed eye to add to my bad back, neck and several other painful joints. I know this is how it gets every winter.  I don't know why I find it a shock to the system every time.
My mother in law has deformed hands due to arthritis.  I had her feel the lumps in my knuckles and asked her if that's how it started for her.  She gave me a sad look and confirmed it was.  'How long do I have?' I asked.  She said she didn't remember.  I pushed harder for an answer - 10 years? 5? 20?? She just didn't know.  I wanted to cry.  I don't want any of this.
I just finished working out,  I am pushing myself to do it hoping it will push me out of flare-up knowing full well, the extra exertion added to my fatigue may have the opposite effect, but I have to try.  I'm feeling very sorry for myself right now (having to take deep breaths and push back the tears forming in my eyes).  I don't want any of this.  I feel 80.  How am I going to feel in 5 or 10 years??...
I'll see the doctor this week. He'll tell me changing my meds won't help (as he tells me every year when the cold sets in) and he'll write yet another letter to get me in to see the specialist which will be pointless because I never get an appointment (f~cking socialized medicine!)  I just want answers.  I want someone to take some xrays or scans, look at my joints and give me a prognosis.  How long do I have before it all goes down hill?
Ok, I have to tell myself - take a deep breath.  Suck it up and drive on.  There's nothing else I can do, but try to fight it.  Sitting here crying is not going to do a damned bit of good.

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