You Give Me Butterflies

, , , , | Working | April 27, 2019

(The hotel I work in is right next to the ocean, and we have beach chairs spread out along it.  One day while I’m monitoring the beach, I notice a girl, about 14, fast asleep on a chair. She looks pretty sickly, big bags under her eyes and all.  Her dad is sitting watching her, looking worried.)

Me: “Sir? Is… everything all right?”

Father: *distracted* “Yes, yes, fine. Thank you.”

Me: “Sir, I can’t help but notice that you look upset.  Is something wrong?”

Father: *quietly* “Actually… yes. My daughter. She… She’s a very smart girl, and a hard worker.  A little too hard working. She’s been quite busy lately. Very busy. She’s been pulling all-nighters to get all her work done, and if she does sleep, it’s about two or three hours. She bites off so much more than she can chew, but she gets it all done somehow. For some reason, she’s still crazy insecure. I… I found out recently that she’s been bullied at school recently, and she’s developed social anxiety, making her even more insecure. She passed out in the halls a week ago, and the doctors recommended that I try to get her away for a bit, so she can de-stress. I’m worried about her. I want this vacation to be nothing but fun for her, to relax. She can’t relax properly, though, and I don’t know how to help. Her mother’s gone, and I can’t ask. What makes a girl tick?”

Me: *pauses to think for a moment* “Sir? What room are you guys staying in?”

Father: “[Number], why?”

Me: “That’s one of my rooms. Tell you what. In my experience, chocolate always seems to help.  I hope she likes ice cream!”

(We chat a bit more, and then I leave. I come up to their room later with a small chocolate sundae. I’ve added little chocolate swirls and decorations and made it as fancy as I could. The girl answers the door, surprised.)

Me: “Hello. I believe you need a sundae?”

Customer: “Um… well… I’ll go grab some money.”

Me: “Don’t worry about it. This is on the house. You look like you could really use it.” *smiles and hands it to her*

Customer: “T-thanks… Thank you! Thank you so much!”

(She beams at me before closing the door.  A few days later, when they leave, I go into their rooms to clear up.  I find a note.)

Note: “Thank you so much for taking care of us, and especially for the sundae! I’ve had a somewhat stressful time at school, and it really made me feel better that somebody noticed and cared.  A little chocolate goes a long way! You are really the best staff member I could have hoped for. The butterflies are for you!”

(Next to the note, I find $15 in one dollar bills, each folded into a butterfly shape. It’s really nice to think that in the midst of her own troubles, she took the time and trouble to make my day special. To the girl, thank YOU!)

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