The mini-fort

Lane loves Legos.  And having Colt as a dad means he gets some serious training in how to build EXTREMELY elaborate things - with rotating doors and multiple platforms and all sorts of "features".  They build with legos every single day and Colt makes him forts that collapse in on themselves or turn inside out.

A few of Lane's lego people

So when we heard there was a lego competition at a local toy store, of course he wanted to sign up (he, being Lane.  Colt did too but he's too old).

The days leading up to submission, Lane had some behavior problems in school and had his legos taken away as punishment.  This happened two days in a row, so the only day he had to build was the deadline day for submissions.  He sat down to build something on his own and after about 20 minutes he held up a little thing and said "I'm done."

"Are you sure?" we tried.  "Don't you want to make it a little bigger?"
"No, I'm done."
"Lane," I said.  "I'm sure this is one of those moments that gives you a complex as an adult, but you can do so much better!  Why don't you work on it a little bit more."
"NOOOOO!" he started to cry.  "I like it like this!  I'm done with it!!"
"Look, we can attach another part right here and you can -"
"MOM.  I don't WANT TO" he said, in full on tears.

I looked at Colt and he looked at me and we were both so uncertain.  Do we run with this little thing and risk his disappointment if he loses?  Or do we try to help him build something better?

In the end, we reluctantly drove him to the store to enter what he called his "mini fort".  I was so nervous that I even offered to buy him a lego mat at the store so he could see the dimensions that were acceptable and maybe be inspired to try again, but he wasn't having it.

Tomorrow's the big event, so tonight we drove him by the store so he could see his creation in the window and feel part of the whole thing.  In the back of my mind I was still trying to buffer possible disappointment.

"Did I win?" he asked when he saw his mini fort in the window.
"We won't know until tomorrow" I said and he somberly shook his head and was quiet for the ride home.

Then tonight during bath time the call came.


"WOOHOOO!" he erupted and jumped all over the furniture.

I'm still kind of shocked.  I'd resolved to give him a speech about how important it is to participate even if you don't win - how ACTION is the thing to be proud of, not the medal or the prize money so much as the fact that you tried at all.  But now I get to see him get that prize money, baby.

It took a lot for me to trust his instincts, his instincts that were sure of his mini fort's awesomeness even in the face of his own parents' doubts, and I'm soooo glad I did.  Lesson learned, momma.


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