One quality I really appreciate in people is a willingness to tell you what they do and don't want. Melissa exhibits this better than anyone else I can think of.
In the weeks before Matthew was born (on Feb. 8), she was still working full time, making sure Kaleigh and Trevor were clean and happy and fed and got their homework done, and trying to get everything in order before going into labor. Naturally, she was exhausted, and one day she called me to ask if I could make dinner for them a couple of nights -- specifically, lasagna and roast beef. I was happy to oblige -- there's something to be said for not having to guess what someone needs.
Two days after giving birth she called me at 7:30 a.m. and asked me to please come over. After I was there for a couple of hours, she tactfully let me know it was OK to leave. I could offer lots of similar examples.
Her willingness to articulate what she needs means I never have to wonder a) if I'm imposing or b) if she feels neglected. This straightforwardness is one of the many things I love about Melissa.
(Others including her story-telling abilities, the long history of our friendship, her unwillingness to ever let me drink alone, the utterly random things she says, her wild side, the way she makes me laugh harder than anyone else, the fact that she forgets my birthday as often as I forget hers, her considerable inner strength, the way she makes you feel like her favorite person, her pure motives, how appreciative she is of a quick back scratch, the fact that she never leaves me or ends a conversation without telling me she loves me, her persistence in believing the best about everyone, her work ethic, her sweet babies and husband, her generosity and selflessness, our ability to sometimes go weeks without talking without hard feelings on either side, her soft heart, her habit of telling perfect strangers her life story -- and them returning the favor, her willingness to tell it like it is no matter the topic ... you get the idea. Everyone should be so lucky as to have a Melissa in their life.)