I woke early, knowing Teale is not in her bed. It's a strange feeing not having her here. I can't quite put my finger on it, but it never feels quite right. The quiet of the house can be eery, the strangeness of part of my heart missing is the only way to describe it. I yearn for the quiet, the peace, the calm, yet when I get it, it's like my body is no longer whole and my soul is lost without the job of being Teale's Mom. I woke and immediately started thinking about her and the camp she is at, wondering if she slept ok, if she was too hot, if she brushed her teeth before bed? The peace in the house is so different from life with Teale. My post traumatic stress disorder is not amped up. I'm not on edge wondering what my day will be, because I can predict it and enjoy it how I want to. There will be no glitches, I will not be Teale's puppet on a string. But, I miss her, I miss the energy she brings to my life. I miss hearing her laughter, because no one laughs like Teale, with the complete joy that her laugh holds. Life before Teale WAS so much easier. We were so much more organized and able to do the things we wanted, but what she has brought to our life can not be replaced. Teale brought us unmeasurable love and strength. She taught me perseverance and determination. Teale may have taken away parts of my life I miss, like the ease and joy of traveling, but she brought me much more than she took. I am a whole person because she is in my life, I am embraced by more people and supported by more love. So as I enjoy this week "off" from being Teale's Mom, I also want to thank her for teaching me to appreciate life so much more than I ever did before knowing her.