National’s Results—and Some (honest) Thoughts on Going Home.

final six Super Groms NSSA nationals

Well, the surf contest has come to an end, and suddenly–after three and a half weeks of adrenaline and activity, I find myself with two quiet days, and so many emotions.

Luke ended up taking FIFTH in the National Final on Saturday.  Though his final heat wasn’t his best, we were just so happy for such a stellar first-ever National contest.

Luke fifth place NSSA nationals

Finals, NSSA Nationals Huntington Beach

The stars were not quite so aligned in Luke’s next division, and he went out early on.  It was disappointing as Luke wanted so badly to make it to another final round, but he got over it quickly.

Now we have two full days with no agenda.  We’ve done most of our visiting…and shopping, and  bowling, and movies, and yes, there is still the looming possibility of a day at a theme park (hoping to be spared,) but one thing I have yet to do for the entire month is to be still.

And when you haven’t been still for almost a month, stepping into that place can be very uncomfortable.

Now that I am still, I am overwhelmed with the things I had hoped to do, but didn’t do on this trip.  Goals/planning for the upcoming year–and home school organization that I didn’t touch.  The writing that I did not do.  The books that sit unread.

I am also accepting how disconnected I feel with my boys at home.  Sure we talk a few times a day, but teenage boys and phone calls don’t exactly jive in my experience.  I feel a distance.  I don’t know what they’re eating, or wearing, or if one of them has friend issues, or acne, or some other personal thing that they would never bring up over the phone.  I don’t know what they’re feeling, or if they really need encouragement, because sometimes I don’t know that until I look deep into their eyes.  And I’ve missed four weeks of looking into their eyes.  And that kind of breaks my heart when I slow down to feel it.

I am overwhelmed with the stuff that awaits me–the home school paperwork, the bills, the stuff that typically fills my days, and now so many weeks of it–all piled up…And the thought of jumping into just “loving my kids” and putting off the piles–God help me do this well.   {And please let me walk in to my house and notice all that the family has done to TRY to please me, and not notice the places that they have missed. (my fatal flaw.)  Help my RE-ENTRY to be smooth…}

I am overwhelmed because for four weeks, it has been mostly just one kid, and the two of us are in a pretty good rhythm.  But if I’m honest–when I’ve got four, I don’t find a rhythm–really, not ever.  Instead there is a controlled chaos that I learn to manage, and on many levels enjoy, but I don’t think I’d call it a rhythm.  I fear that I’ll go back and see them all four in one place, then want to run and hide because sometimes, four is just a whole lot for me.

Finally, if I’m honest, and apparently I’m being pretty honest here this morning–:)–I am overwhelmed with thoughts of this blog, and where I am going with it.  I’m not sure if you know how much this place–and you my readers–mean to me, but it is a LOT.  And I hoped to have much more quiet to think/pray/focus on some changes I feel should be made, but I really did not get that space. And the truth is–I’m not sure what I want to do with this little place called the Grommom.  I sense a new direction, or a shift in focus, but I simply haven’t figured out what that is yet.  And I’ve never been one to embrace the “uncertain” moments.  I much prefer clarity.

I certainly don’t meant to be a downer.  Really, I’m super thankful for this early morning time, and good coffee to keep me company while Luke sleeps late (he hasn’t had that chance all month either!) and it is so good to actually process some of these thoughts.  Quiet is a gift, and though I have a tendency to be too busy and not quiet enough, it is altogether healthy.

FINAL TRUTH:  I can not imagine this month having gone one millimeter better than it has gone.  My heart swells with gratitude for safety, health, relationships, laughter, adventures, and great surfing success.  There are tears in my eyes even as I look back and recognize the gifts in this past month.  And now I am chuckling through the tears as it hits me that i actually left home a month ago with hesitation and a completely different anxiety: I was worried about whether or not this trip was the right thing to do…Was it worth the time, the money, the complicated planning?…Was this the right thing to do?

And yes:  I know now that it was.

photo 5

Thank you so much for being here for me.  I have another post nearly finished which will have a much more upbeat tone–(this one just kind of happened, haha.) But check back soon for that, ok?

Have a fabulous day!

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11 thoughts on “National’s Results—and Some (honest) Thoughts on Going Home.”

  1. I sure do love your heart and the way your are able to express it through words. Nodding my head many times over….quiet is a gift. Yes. We moved to the Big Island in May and quiet is so good (and hard) for my soul. God comes in the quiet…..

  2. My mind is totes blown with how AWESOME Luke did in the competitions. High fives all around! :D

    And hugs to you, ma’am, for rocking the entire trip. Your son probably definitely had the best cheerleader. :) Your enthusiasm and support is so amazingly sweet. You love your boy—you love all of them. And I bet you they all know it beyond a shadow of a doubt, regardless of your shortcomings (those pesky things we all have).

    May your quiet be filled with the whisperings of the Spirit and your travels and homecoming filled with all things good. :)

    P.S.: I finally made the homemade magic shell. Ehrrmuhgerr! It IS magic! :D Thank you again for sharing the blissfully easy recipe!

  3. I for one am glad that you pop in here and share your thoughts. You are one of the moms that makes me feel like I might be normal. Or might be on a good path. Or at least that I am not alone. It is weird how much our lives flow in the same directions and thoughts, and I get on here and think -whew. I’m not alone. My older son, 16, has been at a Younglife Camp in Central Oregon since the end of May and will come home June 9th. No wifi, cell phones, incoming phone lines. Just a payphone out. I hear his voice, but I need his eyeballs. My younger son has been in the competition mode up in the PNW. Fun, party on the beach local competitions – but still – practice, and putting out your best – sharing the stoke, encouraging the younger groms, looking up to the seasoned surfers – they are big days. He came in first at the two this month – and watching his reactions has been delightful for me. No pride – just joy – just sheer joy that he gets to surf and gets free swag. ;) He needs a shirt that says, will show up for swag. I too wonder what direction to go with on my blog – should it be school? Surf? Ministery? Training the younger moms? Sigh. For now, I’ll keep sharing our life and my heart – which I hope you will do too. Thank you so much for your transparent post. I too have enjoyed this month, one on one, with this crazy lil 13 year old boy.

  4. Hello, Monica! I am so happy to hear your month was a successful adventure, worth the planning, expense and sacrifice. I bet as Luke leaves for college or walks down the aisle, some where in the distant ( but fast approaching future, you will look at this as the summer of Mom and Luke. It’ll b your time, and will be precious.

    I am continually encouraged by your blog posts and look forward to the “surprise” of your next topic. Will it be a recipe? Travel? Parenting? Fitness Whatever your hear leads yo to decide about the direction of your log, I know it’ll be impactful. Because the essence of your spirit will shine through!
    Thank you for the time, talent, love and wisdom that make your posts powerful,
    Safe an comfy travel wishes coming your way! Can’t imagine ho excited yo must be to hug all of your guys.

  5. Monica, Loved this post in all its honesty. =) Just a suggestion if I may, I think you should do more videos! You are a great speaker/educator and I love all your videos you’ve done. If the future of grom mom goes in that direction I would love it! =) blessings as you travel home!

    1. Wow, Kate! Thank you. I really enjoy the vids too, I hope to do more. Let me know if you like any specific topics, ok? Blessings to you too…Aloha!

  6. Thank you for sharing such personal stories with us, Monica.
    Thank you for bringing much awareness to areas which we normally aren’t aware of until we hear from elsewhere.
    I love how you say “Quiet is a gift” and I must say, there is so much truth to that.
    God lead you and Luke to that amazing path of awesome experiences and it’s pretty clear, he had an eye on you both during that entire adventure!
    Thank you God, for protecting the entire Swanson family and bringing them home safe and sound!

    1. Thank you Jan!! Love hearing from you…and I believe you’ll be seeing some old neighbors this afternoon!? FUN! :)
      Quiet is a gift, you are right…I thank God for the time Luke and I had, and now we’re back to very little quiet! haha. Aloha to you!

  7. From Iceland,congratulation to Luke,we have been fallowing his progress yours also amazing very proud of his accomplsment,good job,every one here says halló we are having a vonderful time,specially with the Currans her it has been so great and they have háð such a good you be in tuch later.

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