I first was referred to a neurologist after taking a couple of hard falls. My right leg will just "switch off" as I call it, and I'm headed for the floor. My foot on that side will drag, I get electical shock type pain in the leg and foot. I have the same problems with my right arm, and I also have optic neuritis in my right eye. It's inflammation of the optic nerve. My problems are related to what's called de-myelination. Myelin is the sheath of insulation that covers nerves. MS causes this sheath to wear away, and like two stripped electrical wires, when they touch, they short out. This blocks or disrupts nerve transmissions causing my falls.
People with Lupus can also be diagnosed with MS obviously, but it is not very common. It's called an overlapping illness. The two diseases do have some similar symptoms, and people have been misdiagnosed with either disease. Lupus that's really MS and vice versa. As far as doctor appts, it's hard to say how many you will end up going to. In my opinion, between the neuro, rheum, MD, and eye Dr. I go alot. No real way to control that, you just have to do what has to be done I guess.
I understand your trepidations, and your need to look professional and healthy in public. You are certainly a public face, and spokesman for your branch of the service. Back in Arizona a friend who I went to armor school with changed his MOS and became a recruiter, and it was a tough job. Some days I'm able to get out and do alot. Others, I'm housebound. There's no rhyme or reason to it. I have to deal with the fact that every morning has the potential of being the start of a bad, or good day for me, and that I have to be flexible in my daily plans. Not too difficult as I'm now on full disability. For someone who is employed, it can be a nightmare. Sympathy and understanding can be nearly non-existent at times. Nothing for you, or I, or any of us here is set in stone though. You should try to take things one day at a time. I know it's easy for me to say that, but far tougher for you to do. Just get by the best way you can until you get a proper course of treatment for what this actually is. Like I've said, Lupus is as individual as the person who is diagnosed with it. If you are diagnosed with Lupus, you could very well do just fine and respond to meds. Waiting for answers is hard though.