Legos & Work & Life

by Beth Anne on May 25, 2014

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Harry is the master of Legos. He’s putting together 200+ piece sets alone & it’s just amazing to watch. Like one day, we were worried he wasn’t going to point on time & now he’s building a freaking Lego camper, complete with coffee mugs, little tables, & a canoe.

I’ve decided after watching him that everyone falls into 1 of 3 Lego categories:

  • People who prefer to buy Lego sets & follow directions
  • People who prefer to free-build with a bucket of random Legos
  • People who don’t give a shit about Legos

Harry falls into Group 1 & I fall into Group 2, but I think that’s the perfect balance so he can build the trucks & I can design the houses. It’s something that I never mind doing with him & most mornings before work & daycare, we’re in our pajamas building.


10401719 794466917243974 1686711764 n 300x300 Legos & Work & LifeOn Wednesday, our boss gave us the afternoon off to swim & party at his pool.

It’s been over 9 months & I still want to pinch myself. The work I do is fun & creative & challenging. When I first started at Ignite, the hardest part was being surrounded by people 9 hours every day. There was no break from conversation or laughter & for someone who spent 18 months working alone in a cubicle, it was a culture shock. I spent most of my evenings in the first few months running in the lights-off “getaway room” at the gym & then turning down every invitation for dinner or play dates. I felt so burnt out.

Now it’s simply my new normal & it’s hard to believe that a place like Ignite exists, where I’m a person as much as an employee & leggings are more acceptable than suits.


10251280 622916277794144 253226239 n 300x300 Legos & Work & LifeWe discovered through x-rays that Tuck has severe hip dysplasia in one hip, the beginnings in another, & arthritis in both hips + knees. I knew it wasn’t going to be good when they had to sedate her for x-rays due to pain & then bring me in the back room, where I stared at the foggy black & grey films. The doctor showed the tiny bits of bone chipped off into her muscles from the bone-on-bone grinding & handed 2 prescription bottles.

“Long run, what are her options?” I asked & the vet simply stared at me sympathetically.

Our life with Tuck changed that day, starting with medication & realizing that she’ll never use the long back steps again. Instead, she’s leash-walked out the front door & for the first month, we carried her up & down the inside steps every night & morning.

It was heart breaking those first few weeks, desperate for her to feel better. We wondered if a life on pain killers was a real life, without walks & running & things she enjoys. It was a very isolating experience for me & Doug, knowing that any decision we made would be met with judgment.

We are thankful that the NSAIDs have done beautiful work on her pain level – she’s off the daily pain killers & can now climb the stairs by herself, although we only allow it once per day. Her days of runs with me & chasing rabbits in the back yard are over, but she seems pretty content with her new, quieter life.


10369496 569147683199452 1216687991 n 300x300 Legos & Work & LifeI started the week running 2.5 miles at 12’11″ pace. A month ago, I hurt myself with shin splints & cramps, limping for 2 days & taking an entire week off from the treadmill. I’m not entirely sure what happened, except I think I had a hard day & pushed through it with a funky gait & then BAM! legs screaming. It’s been a slow build up since then, increasing by only 20% each week & on Monday, I felt I could keep going but stopped myself.

I’m not sure if that was the right thing to do or incredibly, fearfully dumb to hold myself back, but the point is that I’m only .60 from running a 5K without dying. Which is perfect, considering my first 5K is scheduled for late June.


Right now the boys are still sleeping upstairs & my coffee is hot & I’m 20 pages in to my first summer book. (Lone Survivor, not an affiliate link, on loan from a friend. Anyone read it?)

It’s funny how life seems boring but then I stop & realize these little things are my life. & it’s pretty fantastic.

{ 14 comments… read them below or add one }

Hillary May 25, 2014 at 8:28 am

I’m sorry about Tuck. You summed up the situation well-it is very isolating. My Heidi recently had a bi-lateral enucleation-both her eyes were removed due to glaucoma. She was already blind but I felt so judged throughout the entire process. We’re 3 months out past the operation and she’s doing great-very happy and pain free, sometimes I end up using that to defend myself.

Good job on the Legos! I def fall in category 3.


Beth Anne May 25, 2014 at 8:42 am

Oh, I am so glad Heidi is doing better! I do the same thing about defending our decisions with her – she’s happy for now & we’re doing what we can for now.

If you treat them, you’re judged for prolonging the inevitable, selfishly keeping them alive, spending money that you shouldn’t. If you decide a life of pain & drugs is not for them, you’re judged for giving up.

Solidarity, sister. I know how you feel.


Katie-LovesofLife May 25, 2014 at 4:05 pm

yay! so close to a 5k. Wish I could do it with ya :) And also-I LOVE legos. And I love buying them for Em (not the “girl” kind–I could go on for days about that subject)–but I think they’re awesome. So good for their little brains ;)

so happy you’re happy with your job!


Beth Anne May 30, 2014 at 10:01 am

SO FREAKING CLOSE. I wish you could, too!

& oh girl, on the “girl Legos” – Harry & I had a talk when he started saying that girls could only play with the pink & princess Legos. The thing that frustrates me SO BAD is it also gets the idea into the boys’ brains that somehow, girls aren’t quite up to snuff with the original. RAGE. RAGE. RAGE.


Nikki May 25, 2014 at 4:19 pm

Of course I’ve read it. I actually got to hear Marcus speak when I was in Nashville for a conference. It’s a very touching book, especially this weekend.


Beth Anne May 30, 2014 at 10:00 am

It was a good way to keep everything focused on Memorial Day weekend. My dad is a combat veteran but doesn’t speak too often about specifics – as strange as it sounds, it gives me a bit of an insight into some of the things he may have experienced.

How was Marcus in person?


hildy May 25, 2014 at 5:14 pm

My 4 year old LOVES Legos! He’s definitely a mix of #1 and #2-he’ll build a set from directions, then spend hours tinkering and adjusting it from extra pieces in his stash. Have you taken him to the Lego store yet? I had to eventually drag him…and my husband!…out of there!


Beth Anne May 30, 2014 at 9:59 am

I have! He was in paradise but it was so freaking crowded.

Sometimes I have sticker shock over how much the darn things cost but my mom swears it’s not much more than they did in the 80′s. I’m glad she saved all our Legos growing up!


Natalie May 27, 2014 at 3:21 pm

My dog also has some serious issues with his front right elbow and is on daily pain killers. We also carry him up and down the stairs and it’s so sad :( We use essential oils to help him with pain (and ocassionally take a break from the meds). You can dilute frankincense in some olive oil and rub on the pads of their paws, or encapsulate and administer orally. Just thought I’d let you know in case you want to try! Hang in there!


Beth Anne May 30, 2014 at 9:58 am

Thanks for that tip!! We’re definitely into trying any & everything. The summer seems to be doing her wonders with the warmer weather. Hope your pup feels the same!


Sally May 27, 2014 at 9:41 pm

Happy to hear that sweet Tuck is feeling better. Don’t listen to what anyone says about prolonging the inevitable. We put our cat down (my first pet as an adult) in early November, and the time had been getting closer for months. And when it was finally *THE* time, we knew. We just knew. You’ll know with Tuck, too. Until that time comes, keep her comfortable and enjoy every minute you have with your sweet girl. :)

I’m currently reading Lone Survivor and liking it so far. Not too far into it yet, though.


Beth Anne May 30, 2014 at 9:57 am

Thank you for your kind encouragement. Truly. That’s been our goal so far – as long as she’s pain-free & happy, we’re good to go.

I’m probably a third of the way through the book & I like his approach to telling the story, just because it’s similar to listening to my father tell his Marine Corps stories.


Erin June 13, 2014 at 8:30 am

I love these little “catch-up” posts :). I smiled when reading your part about the new career & I’m so happy it’s worked out so wonderful for you! I recently just started a new career as well & as terrifying as it was to leave the comfort (almost 10yrs!) of my last job I have to almost pinch myself daily because I feel SO lucky & happy at my new workplace. Who knew jobs actually existed that people want to get up & go to?! I just thought people who said they enjoyed their jobs were just lying ;).


Beth Anne June 14, 2014 at 8:17 am

Completely agree! Good luck with the new career & KUDOS for having the balls to leave. You are amazing.


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