That is a pleasurable moment under any circumstances, but it was all the more so this time because next month will mark 25 years since he nearly died.
Then he spent weeks in the hospital, partly in ICU and partly in a regular room, before being able to come home. Nor was he out of the woods even then. The condition with which he was diagnosed had, at the time, an average survival rate of 22 months from time of diagnosis. So we were all too aware that we were still at risk of burying a beloved friend way too young. The first half of that year was a blur... I distinctly remember having random crying fits on most days from April until at least June. Probably more like "sometime during the summer" was when the crying fits became spaced farther and farther apart.
Well, our friend is still here. Not everyone responded to the meds available back then, but our friend did. And now there are even more effective treatments available.
Happy birthday, "Mavi". We're all thankful to God you're still with us.