because it helps them feel better


i woke up with hives the other night.  but i thought they were bug bites.  they were all over my chest and shoulders and down my back, and i thought we were infested with a big extended family of spiders or something.  and so, even though it was the middle of the night, and even though the baby was asleep in the co-sleeper attached to our bed, and even though he had absolutely no bites whatsoever making it highly unlikely that our bed was home to a gazillion biting meanies, my husband got up and helped me change the sheets.  he was pretty sure it was hives all along, and--even though he didn't say it--i know he didn't think the sheets really, logically, needed to be changed right that minute.  but.  he helped me change them anyway because he knew it would help me feel better.  (it did.)

i got to thinking about the illogical, irrational, or slightly inconvenient things we do just because we know they will make someone feel better.  i always let my husband sit so he can see the door when we go out to eat.  i'm not sure why, but it just makes him feel better.  i have a friend whose one-time roommate asked that she take all her cool magnets off and just let the refrigerator door be blank and clean and white.  she wasn't a neat freak in general, but that clean refrigerator door just made her feel better.  i know people who like to get to the airport a full two hours in advance, even for a domestic flight.  it's probably a little inconvenient for the family or friends who are traveling with them, but what's the harm?  it makes the other person feel better.

i like that we do this for each other in the world.  and i bet we do it more often that we realize.  i'm almost positive that my loved ones do it for me more often than i realize.

i'm curious:  what small things do you do--even though they're slightly inconvenient or irrational--to help someone feel better?  and even better:  what things like that do your people do for you?

(leave a comment and let me know.  i love stuff like this--these little bits of human uniqueness.  i love them.)