Hi Beckey, sorry about your diagnosis. The good news is there are SO many meds out there to help you and the bad news is they all come with their associated toxic side effects.
She will probably start you on some of the less troublesome ones first and give you a healthy dose of prednisone to settle your current flare. Then its a matter of joining the waiting game to see what works for you. Its important to keep her informed of how you feel, we all have good days and bad days but if the bad days are outnumbering the good, you need to up your meds.
I've been attending a RA series of lectures run by my local pain management clinic, its been so informative and I feel a lot more empowered by all the information, especially learning about your immune system and how the meds actually affect it. But the one thing they keep ramming home to us is pacing yourself, listening to your body and don't overdo things. Keeping active even if it is only passive exercise during a flare (clenching a muscle and relaxing) attending hydro therapy, walking, doing some sort of exercise every day is really important for us. Tai Chi is recommended too. So there are a lot of things we can do to help our condition, strong muscles lesson pain.
So don't feel too worried. It is a horrible disease but we can help ourselves and its very common to feel grief at the loss of who we were orwhat we could do. If it all gets overwhelming go see a psychologist to help you through it all and you can always post here. Hope thats not too much info, best wishes, we're here for you, golitho