A few weeks ago while grocery shopping I ran into the mother of one of Calypso's closest friends. She somewhat tearfully related what a hard time she was having with her daughter being gone away to college and asked if I was having as hard a time as she was. I wanted to walk a delicate balance between being sensitive to what was a hard transition for her but still be honest. I just said that I sometimes missed Calypso but that I was very deeply grateful that she was well enough to be away and doing what she wanted to be doing. That she was away meant she was healthy because the previous year she spent so much time at home involuntarily because for so many days she couldn't even get off the couch or out of bed. I said I'd rather have her away and well than terribly sick and at home.
This weekend Calypso returned from three weeks in Costa Rica and we spent an afternoon at that friend's house. Her friend's mom and I were talking and she thanked me for that conversation because it snapped her out of a pity party. I told her I hoped I hadn't come across as sanctimonious I just truly am grateful for Calypso's restored health. She assured me I had not. It was just the reality check she needed at the time.
That said, it's every bit as much a gift to stay up until 3 am waiting for a delayed flight just to have Calypso run in the front door searching for me so she can throw her arms around me in a tight hug.