Progress of some variety

Today was medical appointment day again. I managed to catch the bus to get to the appointment (yay, me!).
I love my rheumatologist - she's nice, she's smart, she answers questions and is thorough. Her new attending guy is awesome too. So, today's appointment was long, but good. They are trying everything they can to follow up on and test because neurology has so patently dropped the ball. And it's also very clear that I have some autoimmune ick going on - that's what's wrong with my thyroid. I have Hashimoto's thyroiditis. Unfortunately, it does not come with cool ninja powers or a samurai sword or anything awesome like that. It just means my immune system has decided attacking my thyroid hormones is a good idea.
Also, apparently it's not normal for most people's skin to get a weird sort of mottled purple-red appearance when sort of cool. Didn't know that. :P And apparently it's weird that my finger tips flex inward slightly instead of being straight.
It also seems like the bright spots on my brain in the MRIs are probably related to whatever the autoimmune disorder is. At the moment, we aren't really certain and it may be some time before we're sure. They are fairly certain that there is an autoimmune problem beyond/in addition to the Hashimoto's.
Anyway, more blood tests, a chest x-ray, and I have a pulmonary exam in December. Whee.
No treatment at the moment because a) we're still not sure what's going on; b) the rheumatologists don't like random treatment just to see; c) the treatment of choice would be steroids which they'd rather not do unless it's really necessary. I agree completely with this.

On the neurology front: their strep theory seems highly unlikely given the test results (which they haven't bothered to tell me, but rheumatology did). They still haven't arranged my cognitive testing, despite regular prodding from me. I see them again in October. I'm asking to be referred to someone else. I'm just tired of dealing with them. They don't answer questions, are rather frightening clueless at times, utterly fail at communication, have made no progress, and seem to have no idea how to proceed. Hopefully that will go smoothly and not turn into a butt-hurt drama fest.

A final note: I formally withdrew from my PhD candidacy today. This marks the first time in 24 years I have not been enrolled in some fashion, somewhere as a student. After everything else that's happened in the past 18 months or so, it was rather anticlimactic. Or possibly it hasn't really hit me yet. Mostly I'm pissed about not getting the cool floppy velvet hat and not getting to smuggle Oreo into the ceremony (he started grad school with me). And thinking that, in retrospect, maybe I should have bothered walking for my MA instead of just having a week of celebratory sleep.

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