Ashley is like the sister I never had. She is hilarious – quick witted with a self-deprecating sense of humor – and she’s beautiful. She’s tall and slender with intelligent eyes and a great laugh (plus super thick hair that I’ve always been jealous of). She is brilliant – more intelligent than she gives herself credit for – as well as organized, resourceful and talented (especially in the kitchen – wink, wink, gentlemen)!
Ashley is wonderfully fun and quirky, and she has never lost her childhood sense of wonder. When I’m with Ashley, I get to be a kid again and lose myself in the magical world of imagination. But she’s also a realist. She is grounded and down-to-earth; practical and well aware of how painful this life can be. And she doesn’t run from the hard times.
Ashely is a rarity in that she has stuck by my side through every season of life we’ve experienced thus far. She has celebrated with me and mourned with me. She’s been with me thorough times of laughter and times of tears. She has suffered with me through times of heartache and loss… and she has taken ridiculous pictures with me at Harry Potter World and laughed uproariously with me when I’ve made a fool of myself, like the time I had a guy stop at a grocery store for tampons at the end of a first date. But that’s a story for another day.
Ashley is the friend who “sticks closer than a brother” (Prov. 18:24). She recognizes that friendship means a commitment to care for the other person through whatever comes. She recognizes that love is a decision more than it is a feeling. And she has loved me when I’ve been unlovely. She has been a portrait of Christ to me, and I am indescribably thankful for her friendship.
So happy birthday, Ashley. I’m praying 28 is a great year for you.