Dietrich Elliott Lein.

DietrichsarrivalSo, Dietrich is almost 2 months old now and I haven’t written a thing about him on here. Sorry about that. I really thought I would have tons of time to write and reflect during these first few weeks. After all, I’m forced to sit still quite a bit during the day feeding him or rocking him to sleep. But I must have forgotten the fact that I would only have one hand free to pick away at the keyboard and sometimes what seems like less than half my brain functioning from lack of sleep.

Since my sister Liza was here visiting the whole month of July, I got away with focusing my time on caring for Dietrich, resting when I wanted to, and speeding through my puzzle books to kill time. We had a great arrangement of chores. I put in the laundry to wash and she somehow always beat me to hanging it out and folding it when it was dry. I cooked the meals, and usually she cleaned up the kitchen afterwards. I wrote the chore charts for the house-cleaning, and she managed to make sure it all got done whether or not I had the time to help. She also distracted the kids when needed, and held Dietrich when he was fussy and I was in the kitchen. I’m really going to miss her, but I think I would start to feel guilty if I kept her any longer. She left this morning and so it’s time to pull my act together and start figuring out our new normal.

I know you will all forgive my silence, especially those of you who know what a houseful of kids with an infant is like, so I will stop making excuses and get on with the post. Truth be told, I did actually write up Dietrich’s birth story, but it is sitting waiting for me to proof it again and make it a bit more interesting. I also know that not all of you will want to read all the gory details, so just let me know if you want the long version. For now, here is the shorter version of the story of Dietrich’s entrance into this world.

DietrichsuckingfingerOn Friday, June 7th, I was having inconsistent contractions that I was hoping were going somewhere. Early Saturday morning we were at the hospital getting checked out. It turned out that my early labor wasn’t really accomplishing much and I was allowed to return home. All Saturday and Sunday I had contractions off and on, which meant I didn’t get tons of sleep and was physically worn out by the time Sunday evening came and the contractions noticeably shifted in intensity. We were admitted into the hospital again that night, but it wasn’t until the next morning that things really got going. Dietrich was born at 10:21 am on Monday, June 10th.

I was very appreciative of supportive midwives who were never in a rush to hurry me along, comforted me when I broke down in tears, and worked tirelessly to help me birth little Dietrich when I felt like I couldn’t continue any longer. Early on in labor I realized how much I missed having my mom there with me. This is my only birth she hasn’t been there right alongside me, and I truly missed sharing the experience with her. John was good at encouraging me during that first break down and during the intense phase would say things like “If your mom were here she would say . . .” It was a hard experience, especially as I didn’t deal well with the fact that it was not as easy as I had hoped. During the most intense part of labor I had a hard time focusing on what I needed to do, and that made it even harder. In the end, Dietrich was born in a rush as I really wanted to get it all over with and ignored all instructions to take it slowly. But he coped well, and is healthy and strong.

first pair of jeansOf his siblings, he takes the most after Will. At 7 lbs 14 oz, he was smaller than any of the other kids besides Emma, but he’s growing fast. It’s too early to tell if he’ll be a chubby baby like Will or a slimmer one like Seth, but if I had to guess I’d say chubby. His hair is brown, but every once in awhile I see a tinge of red in it, so it will be interesting to see what color it ends up being. He’s lost almost all of it in the front though, so he looks a little bald right now. He’s a strong little guy. He’s already rolled over several times from his tummy to his back, he likes to stand up on our lap and support all his weight, and his neck strength is impressive. He’s a pretty easy baby, not terribly fussy, and seems to like the activity of his siblings. He is still not sleeping long at night though, so things are still a little unscheduled in our house.

The other kids all adore him and each has their own way of interacting with him. Even though Seth seems to be dealing with the most transition issues over losing his place as the baby of the family, he loves his newest brother and kisses him as often as I’ll let him. Will loves to hold Dietrich and play with his toes. He also loves to be my little helper and even put a diaper on him the other day for me. Elise holds baby Dietrich whenever I need an extra pair of hands and loves to care for him like a little mother. I was her age when my youngest sibling was born, so its fun to see her react in the same way I did.

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