Tuesday, December 30, 2008

I think this is it!

Well I think this is finally it. Sorry to keep posting about my stupid AF issues. I'm sure it's lovely and everyone cares to hear about it. But anyway, really bloated and really crampy right now. I'm drinking tons of water and it's helping some. But still no sign of the witch.

On an aside- I did take a test. It was BFN which I knew it would be. But actually seeing only one line, instead of two, really finalized the miscarriage for me. I held up the old positive tests with the new BFN test and I couldn't even muster a tear. I just felt sad. Not because I was hoping it was positive, but because I now know that it's over.

I have to admit I fantasized with the idea that perhaps it really didn't happen or I was one of those rare miracle things that happens. Oh well.

My now former doctor wrote me a letter back. It was so frustrating to receive the day after Christmas. Basically it said that she and the staff at blank-blank HealthCare provide excellent care and service to each patient. She also told me, at the end of the letter, that if I needed counseling to "deal with the miscarriage" to give their office a call. She also said that she'd "gladly" sign the transfer papers to a new physician (she was probably relieved to see me go, though that is an assumption).

I don't even have any more emotion left to give on that. Part of me wants to retaliate but I know it is futile. Nothing I say will matter. Doctors have to have tough skin because they're going to deal with tough patients. And lucky for her I have already left and she won't have to "deal" with me any longer. Whatever. I never called and bugged them unless I had a serious issue. They had absolutely no care or service to me as a patient and I gave them so much grace, even when I was angry with them.

Well it was good to vent about that. I'm so DONE and so relieved to be done with them. Until I received a bill from the new doctor. His care is a little more expensive. As it is I have quite a few medical bills I'm sitting on so part of me definitely doesn't want to get pregnant anytime soon. I can't handle the financial stress and burden of anymore medical bills. Why on earth does it cost over $60 to get my blood drawn or urine sample taken and have a little test strip dipped in it? Who comes up with these costs?

Okay, I'm done ranting. I've just been tired of all this madness. Opening a new bill everyday doesn't help. Getting a BFN doesn't help. Being crampy, moody, and bloated doesn't help either. Even Daniel told me today that he thinks AF is on the way to pay me a visit because of my MAJOR mood swings. The "old Joy" has returned, for any of you who know me IRL you'll know that that means the crabby dragon lady is back.

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On a good note we finally decided on a name. After he got an upsetting email Daniel and I had a little breakdown together before Christmas, trying to deal with our emotions about a particular situation. We just talked about future babies, their names, the miscarriage and cried ourselves to sleep. But before we slept Daniel whispered through tears, "So did you want to name the baby?" And so I reminded him of the name and he started crying all over again. I thought he hated it or something and asked what was wrong. And he said it was beautiful and perfect.

God, please take care of our baby, Kieran, until we are able to meet with them in Your glorious heavens. I cannot wait to finally see if they would have been a boy or girl here on earth, though I know that when we finally meet that won't even matter. I wish I could've held them, seen them, breathed them in. Please give me peace as I wait for the day to come that I hold both of my little angels and am finally able to tell them that I think about them every day. But please, also keep that day far away as I care for the two sweet girls you've blessed me with here on earth.

I know that they know we love them and miss them. I know they've seen our tears and heard our cries. And God, I know they love me, too. Thank you for Your mercy and please continue to be with us as we move forward in this life, dreaming of the day we'll all be together again.


Kieran
Alive in Our Hearts and in Heaven
10/31/2008 - 11/20/2008

Sunday, December 28, 2008

AF Watch

Still no AF. I'm not obsessing but thought I'd update in case anyone wondered what happened over Christmas in that department. At least I didn't have to deal with it during the holiday!

I hope everyone had a very Merry Christmas. I'm looking forward to having a BETTER year in 2009. It's so amazing to think about everything that has happened during 2008. When you go through your day-to-day life it doesn't seem like much happens.

But in retro-spect you can see that so much has changed and shaped you into a [hopefully] more mature person. A lot happens in a week, in a month, and especially in a year. I cannot wait to see what is in store in 2009. I'm READY!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Remember when...

... I said AF was due Christmas-time? She's been a no-show and those "weird feelings" dissipated. I'm beyond even worrying about it, which is why I haven't blogged in so long. I have this amazing ability to shove things to the back of my mind and ignore them. While everyone on my forum is peeing-on-a-stick almost every day since CD5 I am able to wait until AF is due or late. I've just gotten to that point in my life where I am sick of disappointing myself.

Anyway, no I don't think I'm pregnant. But I probably should buy some tests to keep on hand anyway. We did BD without protection. But at the same time it took me 8 weeks to get a period with my first miscarriage and as it is now it's been 5 weeks exactly on Christmas day. So I am expecting it within a week or two, hopefully! I'm ready to move on at this point. I'll POAS anyway, just to be certain. I'll let you guys know when I do that.

I must also say that I'm completely back to being 100% baby hungry. It doesn't take me long at all. If you look back at my first posts when the miscarriage happened it seemed so hopeless and desperate. I knew I'd change my mind and quickly because I did this last time as well.

Daniel is still having a very, very hard time. I can't and don't mention the miscarriage. There are days he doesn't want to even pick up his guitar and play. He is so distraught. Daniel is a lot more emotional than I am. Like I said, I can push things out of my mind and focus on other things. I grieved hard and then let it go and gave it to God. Daniel didn't allow himself to do that.

I'm afraid to even bring up TTC to him. Out of the blue he'll ask me, "Aren't you afraid?" And of course, because it is out of the blue, I'm like, "Afraid of what?" He means getting pregnant again. So am I? Hell yes. I was afraid when I got the BFP on Halloween this year, but my elation overpowered my fear.

I don't want to repeat a pregnancy like I had with Bumble Bee. I was so emotionally detached from her and the pregnancy. I didn't feel pregnant, even when I felt her rolling around. Obviously once she was born it was an instantaneous love. I was so in-tuned to her and she literally never cried because I met her needs before she even knew what she wanted because I knew. It was an amazing bond and very different from how I bonded with Butterfly.

So are we TTC? No, we're not. Mostly because Daniel isn't ready, though I am very very ready at this point. We'll just keep doing what we're doing and if it happens, it happens. I'm so seriously wiped out from the emotional trauma this year (many things, not just the miscarriage) that I'm taking it one day at a time. I don't want the letdown or the disappointments again. We could very well get pregnant again in a snap or it could be years. I'd prefer the former rather than the latter, of course.

But AF, please hurry up because I need to move on and have a basis for my cycles! PLEASE!!! Watch, she'll show on Christmas morning, just to taunt me.

I was supposed to be 12 weeks on Christmas day. It's really weird to think about that and I have been trying not to say, "Oh today is the day that _____ (fill in the blank)." It just makes it harder and more unbearable. But the holidays are definitely harder to ignore. I still have the stocking for the little one hung (has a bib and washcloths and baby wash in it). I'm about to go take it down right now. I don't want Daniel or the girls to see it Christmas morning and ask about it. It is time.

Yesterday morning Butterfly jumped up in my bed and accidently crushed my stomach. I told her that hurt and she sat back and said, "Baby isn't in your tummy? Baby is sick and with Jesus? Yeah, baby is with Jesus." I just affirmed her and she went back to bouncing on my bed.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Strangeness

I have felt really "weird" lately. Like pre-AF-ish. Ugh! Don't like it at all. Making me feel sluggish and tired. If the miscarriage didn't totally screw up my cycle length my next expected AF is due December 22nd, which is 3 days away.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Oh my!

I cannot believe I haven't given any updates recently. I have so many things to relate. Since I can get pretty long-winded I will TRY to condense it.

1). As you know my former doctor took me back on as a patient! Well they need my medical records, right? Right..?! So I call medical records lady and tell her I'd like to come pick up my records. She tells me, "Sure! No problem. I'm just down the hall from your Dr. B so we'll walk over there and have her sign the release." ---remember, this is the one I'm leaving

Um... what? I have to confront and face this doctor? I have major issues with confrontation. I either keep my mouth shut to keep from saying something I'd regret, so I just word-vomit all over the person. I mean, rip them a new one! All these scenerios of me screaming in the office came up and I told her to just MAIL the release forms. *chuckle* I don't care if it takes longer.

2). Monday was the day I called my NEW-OLD doctor's office. The nurse called me back when I was running errands. Tuesday I forgot to call her back. Come Wednesday, guess who calls me? The nurse! I could just roll on the floor, giggling. Why? Because someone actually gave me a call back without me leaving a message or because I had to call them first. Amazing! Customer friggin' service.

3). Made appointment for... TODAY (Friday)! Went in and walked into the familiar waiting room. Saw a couple of pregnant ladies and didn't really affect me. Their babies are theirs. It doesn't make me any more or less sad for my own loss. I could feel them all sizing me up, probably wondering if I was there for a prenatal appointment as my kids kept running around, yelling and being the noisiest little people in the waiting room.

Went back, got weighed (soooo not cool when you have someone jot it down--- so much easier when doing at home, alone). And then I realized... horror of horrors... I did not shave. In fact, I couldn't shave because I kept forgetting to buy blade refills. Mortifying. I know it's their business and they probably see much worse but I was so incredibly embarassed.

*ahem* Back to what really matters. So it was an appointment to make sure the miscarriage was completed. We just sat and talked for 10-15 minutes. I told him everything and he listened. He asked questions. It was an actual conversation. He gave me so much information and knowledge and feedback.

He told me that low-dose birth control would actually benefit women with high testosterone because they have something-something hemoglobulins that bind the free testosterone which cause the ovulation and hair problems. I declined, though, as I'm adverse to birth control. He said it was my choice and that was fine.

-He then told me that he always gives his patients Femara over Clomid.
-He also told me to wait 3 cycles to try again (no problemo, Doc! Trying to lose the 50 lbs from Butterfly and those-brownies-while-pregnant-with-her).
-He mentioned that when we were ready to try again that I could let the nurse know what CD (cycle day) I was on and on the 21st day we could check progesterone to see if I need the Femara. When you ovulate your progesterone spikes.

I mentioned progesterone supplements. I told him that I understood that sometimes it just doesn't matter if you have progesterone supplements if you have a genetic anomoly with the embryo but if he would mind if I continued the progesterone pills should I get pregnant again. He was totally fine with that! He also went into a long spiel about progesterone and miscarriages, most of which I already knew. But I like how he broke it down and explained it to me in his doctor terms (he definitely doesn't use layman's terms) as though he knew I was smart enough to "get it".

This condensed version is starting to turn into a novel.

Anyway, he pushed around on my stomach, feeling for my organs. Then he did the pelvic exam (again, SO SORRY for the unshaved legs!). Told me my uterus was normal sized and everything looked great.

It feels so good to be back, Dr. S!

4). Sent letter to Dr. B today. It was one of those things where I had to push it to the back of my mind and pretend like it was just any ol' letter I was mailing out. Worked like a charm. That's how I'm able to get piercings. Just DO IT without thinking about it.

5). Started spotting yesterday after I started the more intense LEVEL 2 of my Jillian workout. Oops. Guess it was too soon to start that one up! Back to LEVEL 1 I go. Yesterday was also the 3-week anniversary of miscarrying. I didn't realize. It feels like I miscarried months ago, not weeks ago.

6). I'm in size 14 jeans now. I keep forgetting to write measurements down though, so let's do it right now! I keep my tape measurer here at the desk so I can measure chains and jewelry items as I list them online. Let's just measure moi! I'll update as I feel I'm slimming down more.

Waist- 36 inches
Thigh- 22 inches
Bicep- 12 1/4 (though mine are muscular, not fatty)
Neck- 14 inches (weird, I know, but it is thicker than it used to be)
Butt- 44 1/2 inches (all the way around my body)
Chest/Breasts- 42 inches

Hope this post finds all of you guys well and I will check you later! Now don't go measuring yourselves to compare to me, ya hear?! Totally kidding, go for it!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Look At My Butt

I feel like I'm shrinking! The scale might not be showing a difference but I feel like my butt, stomach, and boobs are smaller. So when Daniel got home I asked him if my butt looked smaller. He started laughing and said, "Yes, it does look smaller!" I asked him why he was laughing. And he said, "I laughed because I hoped you were ready for a real answer because if it didn't look smaller I was going to say so!"

I think I could even fit in a size 14 now. I keep having to tighten my belt more and more throughout the day. These jeans are even baggy in the butt right now. I'm not model.......... yet....... but well on my way! I've had too many people tell me that I will never fit into my skinny jeans again. Well, I'm ready to prove everyone wrong. Boooooooooooo yaaaaa!

P.S. Daniel has lost a couple more pounds... dang it! Looks like I'm going to have to work out double-time.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Still Dreaming

There is a poem on my sidebar called, "Dreaming of Caiden or Zoe". I've been doing a lot of thinking the past few days, especially now that I've gotten back with my former doctor. And I have a renewed sense of hope.

If you remember a post of mine a long time ago, on my other blog, I wrote about the meaning of the names.

Caiden- Spirit of Battle This makes me think of a spiritual warrior, someone with a zest for life.

Zoe Beth- Life; Promise of God This name means a lot to me because I like to translate it as, "God's Promise of New Life". Meaning that God isn't done with us yet. There is still a baby or babies out there for us and He hasn't forgotten us.

I don't know why miscarriages happen. I don't pretend to have the answers. I am not even admitting to being whole again. And no, we're not going to consciously try to conceive right now either.

I just had to share these feelings, get them written down to remind myself that there is always hope. To never give up hope.

One day we will have a son and his name will be Caiden Isaac. I have had this name picked out since pregnant with Butterfly and nothing will change my mind from that name. It's been embedded in my heart and I've dreamed about him many nights and envisioned myself cradling him, breathing in his baby soft scent. To me he's real, even if he's not here. I hope that makes sense and doesn't sound weird. Even my sister has spoken about him in future-tense as a real person!

And maybe one day we'll have a promise of new life in another daughter. Her name will be Zoe Beth. When I think of a baby girl I think of three little sisters huddling together in bed, giggling into the late hours and doing each others' hair. The only thing I'd change Zoe to would be Chloe (if we ever had a twin boy and girl--- 'cause you know that would be stinking cute to have Caiden and Chloe!).

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On another note, I just worked by bum off. I didn't feel like working out. It's cold out and I am having a hard time sleeping lately so I'm tired. But I made myself put that DVD in and I gave it 100%. I even tried to do all the pushups (I'm getting better at them!).

And it's paying off. I get to add $1 to our pot. Woo hoo! One pound may not seem like a lot but it's one less pound off this butt or thighs. Tomorrow I may exclusively do an ab workout because my thighs might be screaming at me.

After the workout I hopped in the shower, put on some regular clothes (instead of sweats), put on some body spray and I feel tons better. I'm still cold and my hair is still wet as I don't own a blow dryer, but I feel clean and accomplished.

Monday, December 8, 2008

We have some good news... FINALLY!

Before I get to the good stuff--- we weighed in on Saturday. Daniel has cut back on portions and is eating smaller meals throughout the day instead of one big dinner at night. He also did my workout video with Jillian ONCE. He lost 3 1/2 lbs. Yay Daniel!!!

But Joy? Who always eats right and smaller portions? The girls who slaves over her workout video? Yup, gained one pound. ARG!!!!!

Onto the good stuff before I burst. Okay, so I gave myself a deadline to find a new doctor today. Well because I love the hospital that I've delivered at my heart was torn between traveling to a nearby city or staying at the hospital. No, I did NOT decide to stay with Dr. I-Don't-Know-How-To-Treat-This. I'm moving one floor down, people. (There's more than one OBGYN group at the hospital I love.)

I'm going BACK to my previous OBGYN. Now obviously this may not excite you just yet but wait until you hear me gloat about this guy. AND the entire staff. First, he has held my mom-in-law's hand through her cancer. He is the one who was there, gave her discounts on her medical care, and has kept her alive for 8 years when they said she should've died.

He is the one who saw me through my pregnancy with Butterfly (he didn't end up delivering her but his colleague did). His staff called me and cried with me when I miscarried the first time. They were just on top of their game.

Oh, and when you call you get to a LIVE person within 2 or 3 rings. This is not an automated service where you hit 4 to leave a message and cross-your-fingers-that-someone-calls-you-back-sometime-in-the-next-48-hours kind of service. But an actual person picks up and says, "_____ Women's Healthcare, how can I help you?"

You know those movies where someone is dancing in a flowy dress in a field of buttercream flowers, with the sun setting in the background? That's how I feel right now! I'm so thrilled I can hardly stand it. This is the most gentle doctor, too. When he does internal exams I do NOT feel it (I feel pain with other doctors).

So here is my list of PROS and CONS:

PROS:
-Many years of medical expertise
-GENTLE hands
-In the past he's offered me 50% off prenatal care (read below for details)
-He has listened to me and worked with me in the past (for example we don't personally believe in birth control and instead of pushing it on us, he let us do the Natural Family Planning method we had chosen).
-His nurses are always the most caring and sweet people ever (who return calls within an HOUR)

CONS:
-He's a man and sometimes doesn't always "get" certain things
-He's one of the most sought-after physicians that I'm aware of so he's usually booked and you wait a long time in the waiting room

The CONS list isn't even a problem for me. I've been a patient of his before and I bawled my eyes out when I had to leave. Oh, so you might be wondering why I did leave?! After my miscarriage in 2006 I got pregnant with Bumble Bee right away. Well at my first prenatal appointment the receptionist tells me, "You owe us $___" and I just gawked at her (I think it was a couple hundred).

I asked her why. She said that I didn't have prenatal coverage and had to pay out-of-pocket before Dr. S would see me, that it was just the office policy. Well his nurse came to my rescue and pulled me into a room. The nurse and their billing lady helped me try to figure everything out. Turns out I had signed a paper stating I would not receive prenatal coverage for 2 years in order to get a really low premium. His nurse even said she'd write, "Annual Pap" on my billing stuff instead of "Prenatal Pap" so that I wouldn't be billed the entire thing.

I was just crying my eyes out in the office. He came in and patted my hand and said it would all be okay. He offered me 50% off prenatal coverage and I said I'd have to go home and talk about it with hubby. At that point in our lives we couldn't afford it even at the discount. So I got on Medicaid, which his office didn't accept.

Enter new doctor here. She was fine up until Bumble Bee's delivery (where her collarbone snapped). In retrospect maybe she always allowed me to dictate what I wanted because she had no clue what to do herself. ??? I'll never know. 'Cause I ain't nevah goin' back!

Okay, do you see why I'm so excited? I'm going to have a knowledgeable, grand-fatherly type doctor who is gentle and is going to listen to me and make a wonderful plan with me.

And just to add one last thing- his nurse called me back within 20 minutes of my calling. She listened to me ramble on about why I wanted to switch. Without a question she said, "You're still in our system. We'll get you seen this week and we'll have you transfer your papers to our office. I'm going to talk to Dr. S and see exactly what he wants to do from here." She was horrified by the lack of care at the other place. When I told her they were the office one floor up she guffawed!

I had to go run errands and Daniel said she called when I got back. She called me back! Twice in one day! You see? That's called CARE. That is called service. That is what I'm paying people for, you know?! And do you know what her name is? Her name is Elena (spelling?)!!! See, everyone with that name is sweet, ha ha!

I'm off to dance in a field of flowers under the sunset. HUGS AND KISSES! Mwuah, mwuah!

Friday, December 5, 2008

19 More Days... (*UPDATE)

... until AF shows. Yup, while everyone is counting down the days to Christmas I'm counting down the days to that "wonderful" time of the month. Gee, Santa, it's what I've always NOT wanted.

I guess it's always possible to get a BFP, too, but I'm not really looking for that to happen. Instead I've been focusing on portions and working out. Daniel did the workout DVD today while I was out working at the church and getting groceries. He said he hurts so bad! And it's only 20 minutes.

The girls and I started making chocolate and vanilla covered pretzels tonight for gifts. I'm probably the most impatient mom, though, when it comes to doing stuff in the kitchen. After about 5 minutes of Bumble Bee just eating the pretzels and Butterfly trying to stick her face in the bowl I just yelled, "Daniel get in here and get them out, PLEEEEASE!"

Then I feel bad. I want to be that fun mom that does all this fun stuff. I just can't stand having people underfoot. I have enormous personal space. People who like to get really, really close when they talk to you? Yeah, don't like that. Don't like people who sit really close to me either. I get claustrophobic, in a way.

So after telling them to scoot I felt like poo. Oh well. It was bedtime anyway and there's always another day! We're going to make sugar cookies in two weeks for Jesus' birthday so they'll get to make a huge mess and have fun with that! Mostly because they'll have to sit at the table instead of scrunch up to my little countertop fighting and pushing me.

***UPDATE***
I'm sure no one has read this post yet because of the hour but I have to add this. I completely forgot to mention............... that my doctor called today.

And you won't believe what it was about! She called and said, "I see you're scheduled with an appointment this upcoming week." Then she paused. "Um, so what's going on? Do you think you're pregnant again? Do we need to do some tests?"

What?!

I can be a major you-know-what on the phone sometimes. Through gritted teeth all I could manage to get out was, "That appointment was made before. I don't plan on coming in. I'm very busy right now. Goodbye." CLICK. I hung up on her. I just couldn't do it. I couldn't stay on the phone. I couldn't start a confrontation or pretend that I wasn't angry with her. That appointment was supposed to be my 10-week prenatal appointment. Why on earth did she not GET that?

I've printed off the letter but I haven't mailed it yet. It's been 2 weeks and it's just sitting here like a huge beacon in my face. I will get it mailed off Monday. That is my deadline. I need deadlines or I won't get it done.

I just couldn't believe that she called. She didn't mention getting a checkup after the miscarriage to make sure it "all came out" which my previous doctor did with my previous miscarriage. And how on earth could I get pregnant within 2 weeks and already know about it? Can anyone else help me figure this out? WHY?! Why does she have to call when I'm feeling better? Why does she have to drudge up all these nasty feelings?

Oh, and another deadline for Monday--- calling up a new doctor. Yup. I need to get that done! I feel like pulling my hair and screaming right now. I'm off to finish making the pretzels and to start making some spiced walnuts (yum). Cooking/baking = distraction.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Jillian, PLEASE!

I am begging you, Jillian... ease up! I'm going to die if you don't stop!!! UGH! Can I just say that Jillian (from B.iggest L.oser) has a 20 minute workout and it KICKED my arse? Seriously that chick is a bulldog even through a DVD. I'd be scared to have her as a trainer IRL.

Oh, oh, oh! I have got some news for y'all. Last night Daniel comes to me and is very serious. My stomach instantly knotted. "Joy, I need to talk to you..." Can I just say I felt like throwing up on him? I thought he was going to say something awful like he's cheating on me or wanted a divorce or something. That is HOW serious he was.

"Joy, honey, I need to lose weight."

I gave him a good punch in the arm! I thought it was going to be something awful. So we started talking about it. He gave me permission to be absolutely strict and evil about food (YES!).

Well the problem with both of us is that motivation is a huge issue. Neither of us remains motivated long enough to stick to a plan. I had watched B.iggest L.oser earlier and that got some wheels turning in my head.

Introducing...

YOU'RE GOING DOWN........ several sizes!

Oh yes people, it is on! Daniel and I have a competition in effect this morning. For every pound lost $1 is added to a pot (err--- it's really a jar). For every week we don't eat out $10 is added to the pot. For every month we don't eat out another $10 is added as well as $10 per week. Every day we don't eat a dessert $.50 a person is added to the pot.

FIRST PERSON TO LOSE 50 lbs will WIN THE POT of $$$!

I figure if those TV shows can manipulate people with money than we can totally manipulate ourselves with money too!

If Daniel wins (HUGE IF- ha!) then he wants to get a tattoo. Personally I'd buy skinny clothes. He'd probably end up buying clothes, too, though!

We also have a list of penalties and a list of rules. Must drink 8 glasses of water a day or a $1 is taken out of pot. If you miss a meal $5 is taken out of the pot (no skipping meals unless fasting for religious reasons), etc., etc.

This has been a huge motivator and Daniel and I are playfully bantering. A lot of people keep reminding me that men lose faster than woman and we're not being fair to one another. But Daniel can't workout and I can, so we figure that evens things out!

Here's our written up challenge (penalties listed on another page and I made charts for us for each month to keep track of exercise, junk food intake, weigh-ins, etc.):


You’re Going DOWN…
…several sizes!


OBJECTIVE:
First person to lose 50 lbs wins grand prize
Second person to lose 50 lbs will win consolation prize

Grand Prize- money from pot* toward what they wish
Consolation Prize- $50 to spend on clothes

*Each pound lost adds $1 to the pot

GUIDELINES:
1. Portion control! One serving, no seconds!
2. More fruits and vegetables
3. Water (drop the soda, tea, coffee, etc.)
4. No starvation- must eat 3 meals a day
5. Exercise as able, at least 5 days a week
6. Make healthier choices (yogurt, cottage cheese instead of mac-n-cheese)

BONUS:
1. No fast food in a given week by will earn $10 bonus to the pot
2. No fast food in a month will add an extra $10 on top of the $10 per week for a total of $50-60
3. No dessert a day adds $.50 to the pot

EXCEPTIONS:
Holidays and birthdays are exempt from the guidelines though no money can be added to pot (i.e. dessert).

Penalties result in loss of $1 from pot, regardless of weight lost