Tuesday, January 31, 2012



I couldn't sleep last night (one of those weirdo side effects of pregnancy...), and decided that the internet would be the best means of wearing out my brain at 3 a.m.  In searching for inspiration for an upcoming event I googled "photobooth backdrop," and this was the first image that came up! Ha! Perhaps not my best photo (Amy Osaba, why are you undressing me? and tell me, does anyone actually look good in a jumping pic? :) ), but it was SO appropriate for today's post...

We got the call--no blood clots! Yay! Thanks everyone for the prayers and encouragement!  In talking with the nurse about the results of the re-test, I (naturally) inquired as to why my first test results were so wrong and such a cause for worry:

Dear LabCorp,

Thank you for messing up my test results. For two weeks I worried that every little ache in my extremities would lead me to have a brain aneurism.  Thank you for almost making me take a blood thinner, which could've been very, very bad for my baby. Thankfully, you're at least smart enough NOT to mess up twice (in a row at least), and now that second time's a charm, I can rest easily.

Talie Shove
PS: I will not be paying EITHER of the $600 bills you've sent me for my two blood clotting tests.  Seems fair, right?

Oh, well! All's well that end's well, and we're so excited to have good news! Now, onto finding out if this kid's going to be surrounded by pink or blue come June...

Thursday, January 26, 2012

And Then There Were FIVE (cont.)


Oscar came into our lives in a bit of a strange way. You know how sometimes you meet someone for the first time and connect in such a way that you know deep down that they're going to be a lifelong friend? Well, it was a bit like that.

We had been looking into adopting a dog, visiting shelters and researching online, when one weekend we came across "Joey" at our local PetSmart on adoption Saturday. He was the CUTEST puppy there--a little gray ball or wild hair and a little pink tongue--and he was surrounded by people waiting to play with him. I looked at Ryan and said, "That dog looks like his name should be 'Oscar,'" and we went on our way. For three more weeks we returned to the same PetSmart, and every week "Joey" was the star of the show.

I hadn't held him or even played with him, but every week we were surprised to see him there (and eventually came to refer to him as "Oscar" between ourselves). On the fourth week, I finally went up to a volunteer and said, "That dog is meant to be my dog; we've been coming here for four weeks, and each week we've been sure he'd be adopted out, but each week he's been here waiting for me." The volunteer admitted that "Joey" was her favorite foster dog and that she'd had a ton of adoption applications for him, but had been extra picky.  Luckily, we made the cut.

Oscar is a quirky dog, and he never ceases to crack us up. He "talks" (not a growl, but friendlier); he loves having lots of people around; he smells everything in detail, like he's cataloging the scents.  He's Ryan's little buddy, and when Ryan's traveling for work, he's the protector of the house (which means long nights of prowling the backyard and barking at anything that seems suspicious, which means he barks at everything). We've laughed at how he's already "babysitting," i.e. laying on my stomach (he's light) so I can feel his little puppy heartbeat right over the baby. He's a sweet guy, and remembering how he came into our lives reminds me how much better our lives are with him in it.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Ewww, Blood!

Yep, that's all mine.

I love my doctor, Dr. Jenny Jo. She's really energetic and smart and even though she's got a million patients, she takes time to call me personally when there are any little bumps (pun intended) in the road.

In fact, she actually called the other day; it turns out (in a strange twist of irony) that some blood work (other than the thrombocytopenia test) came back funky. I guess something in the results indicated that I'm at a risk for a blood clot--which, if you've been following our pregnancy, is quite a surprise since we've been so focused on the baby potentially hemorrhaging. Dr. Jo said not to worry too much yet, that she wanted to talk to the perinatologist (the high risk guy) before starting anything (most likely baby aspirin to begin).  Then, a funny thing happened...

They disagreed.

My doctors didn't see eye to eye on what the blood work meant. Awesome. Talie Shove=Anomaly.  So, naturally, the solution is for me to give MORE blood to be retested. I really don't mind (considering my pregnancy book says that there's 25% more blood pumping around me lately), but the fact that the lab lady knows me by name cracked me up today.  In fact, we figured out that I've given about 35 tubes of blood already. Yowza.

So, once again, we wait. I'm not worried this time, though, for some reason. Maybe it's because it's about me and my blood; perhaps it's just more natural to fear for your child than yourself?  Maybe it's because this is just par for the course? Whatever the reason, let me just say, thank God for the abundance of blood during pregnancy! :)

Sunday, January 15, 2012

And Then There Were FIVE


Just wanted to mention the OTHER two members of our family, our dogs.

Olive's birthday was earlier this month (thanks to Beth Thomas for bringing her into our family!), and she's been making us laugh every day over the past five years.

She's a very intuitive dog, and she can definitely tell I'm pregnant; as Ryan's been traveling a lot, Olive's really been the one with me all throughout feeling sick and tired, and her presence has truly been a God send. (How is it that a little creature can be so empathetic?) We're excited for the dogs to meet the baby, and (even though every parent we've talked to has said our feelings will change) we're already researching how to make sure the dogs aren't left out once our newest family member's on the scene.  In fact, Olive already has her own dog bed reserved for the nursery, as she is a HUGE fan of any sort of napping opportunity. :)

(I'm saving Oscar for his own post.)

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

A Great Relief from Great News

15 week ultra-sound from the high-risk doctor--the baby was jumping around like crazy!

Whew.  I hate the time between a doctor's visit and receiving test results; it's like time ticks slowly by, and when "Day 7" of "7-10 days for results" passes without a phone call, it's very easy to be convinced that no news is bad news.  Luckily for us, "Day 8's" phone call was well worth the extra 24 hours of agony!

My mother had a pregnancy condition called thrombocytopenia.  For each of her pregnancies, her body recognized the baby's blood as a foreign object and destroyed the baby's platelets. (It's very similar to Rhesus disease, just a lot rarer and often fatal for the babies due to hemorrhaging before and/or after birth.  In Rhesus, the mom and baby's blood "types" don't agree; in thrombocytopenia, the HPAs don't agree.)

I'm a researcher (knowledge comforts me, and I actually enjoy anything remotely academic), so when we were referred to a high-risk doctor because of this family history, I think the doctor was surprised that I knew a lot about the subject and had some slightly more in-depth questions.  After a long talk, Ryan and I submitted to a blood test and waited.

I haven't mentioned the potential of this disease publicly so far because there are a lot of nerve-wracking decisions and potential problems that would have come with a diagnosis, and as much as I've been dwelling on those issues internally, I just couldn't put them down on paper.  It's been a long two weeks, needless to say.

Then, the call finally came yesterday: No thrombocytopenia!  The nurse said they were going to review the test results for a second opinion today, and that they'd call if the second doctor had another interpretation. (I've never wanted a silent phone worse than today!) But, here it is, past business hours and we're free and clear.

Praise God!

Friday, January 6, 2012

Not-So-Dirty Little Secret

Ryan's Not-So-Dirty Little Secret

So I'm chugging away at my New Year's Resolutions, anxiously awaiting Ryan's return from Passion so that he could "approve" my sharing this one--which I think will bring a few chuckles to the crowd.

Ryan has a secret love for hotel freebies.  I think it started on our honeymoon: We had brought our own soaps, but the hotel we stayed at had really nice, brand-named toiletries that they left us everyday. We were super poor and the idea of not having to buy shampoo for a while was appealing. Little did I know it would start a habit that it's now taken six years to break...

Since he travels a lot for work, we've amassed a crazy amount of travel-sized goodies. Every year I clean them out,  but unfortunately, our box of unused soaps is driving my nesting instincts crazy.  The strangest thing is that Ryan TAKES HIS OWN toiletries when he travels, not the mini-versions he's collected. And, of course, we buy normal products for at-home. So I posed the question: WHY are we collecting these toiletries if we'll NEVER use them???  The answer: We aren't anymore.

Goodbye, little shampoo from that delightful boutique Manhattan hotel. Thank you, L.A. hotel manager, for choosing to use miniature Aveda products to lure in guests; it worked. So long, miniature memories of travels-past, it's been a great run, but now you must fulfill your destiny: We are going to use you. Every. Last. One. of. You.

Starting today.

Monday, January 2, 2012

First Comes Love...

...then comes marriage, then come Ryan and Talie with the baby carriage!

It's hard to imagine that Ryan and I have been together over NINE years.  We've never gotten over each other, and although it seems like I've known him my whole life, every day I learn more about him.  I can't think of a better person to have a family with--he is going to be the best dad, seriously.

So, everyone (well, girls at least) always wonder the same things, so here it goes: 

1. No, we weren't trying. In fact, the months preceding getting pregnant made up a very precarious period in my life where God's orchestration seemed a bit odd, but in hindsight, He was preparing and perfecting our "situation" for us to be parents. It was a total surprise; in fact, I really only took a pregnancy test to rule OUT the possibility (a couple days late, a never-ending flu...).  We probably would've started trying next year, or after our house sold (still praying for that one to happen!), but the best laid plans are always the first to go.

2. Ryan's reaction couldn't have been better. He was asleep (remember, I took the test to rule OUT the possibility) when I told him I was pregnant; I've never seen the boy jump out of a dead sleep so fast! He was so bewildered and excited--then he immediately ran to the drug store to get four more tests "just to be sure."  It took five positives for it to sink in.

3. I'm entering my 15th week. We found out mid-October and waited until Thanksgiving (after our 8-week appointment) to tell our families. My mom cried ("I thought you'd never have kids!"), and Ryan's mom was speechless for a bit. Slowly after that we began to tell our close friends, but now that we're past that anxious first trimester, I want to tell everyone!

4. Yes, I feel like crud.  I was nauseated the WHOLE first trimester, and most of the second so far.  Not much to complain about though, considering that I've had friends who've experienced the worst of it. I'm just ready to move on to the fun stage of pregnancy, soon please...

Ryan and I never thought kids were in our future, but life changes for the better sometimes.  We're so excited to start this new chapter in our lives, and hope you'll pray with and for us throughout these next few months!