Soul Sisters, Est. 2011

8:27 AM

I met my sweet friend Ashley in the summer of 2011. We were forced to be a part of each others life because of a year long internship for our college ministry at Summit Church. I knew nothing about her except that she wore hats. I honestly thought nothing of it, I just thought she loved how they looked. So when I met her I said "Oh your the girl that wears the hats", not knowing anything about her story. Once I found out her story, I felt awful that I had said that!

You see Ashley was diagnosed with Alopecia Areata less than a year prior on July 4, 2010. I learned this shortly after meeting her. There was about a month in between seeing one another next. The next time that I saw her most of her hair had been lost on the top of her head and she was wearing a wig. She was still beautiful as ever. The prognosis for alopecia can vary widely. As well as the causes and  treatment. It really varies patient to patient. It is a very unknown and scary road to walk into, especially as a woman.

Ashley had walked into my life at a time where I really needed a great friend who was hungry for the Lord. And boy was she ever hungry for the Lord! I know that the loss of her hair made her gain a much greater treasure in her relationship with God. She had a child like faith and was excited about every aspect of her relationship with Him. I needed that desperately too recharge my battery and to show me different characteristics about the Lord through her. She did that for me by the Lords grace.

We bonded instantly. Maybe because we were on a leadership team with all boys, maybe because we both desperately needed a friend, maybe because we were lonely but most defiantly because we needed each other and God ordained us to be great friends. We spent many nights laughing, crying, wallowing, giggling and enjoying one another. A part of that was walking through the loss of her hair as it got better and sometimes got worst.

One of my favorite happy moments from her hair journey was when she took off her wig in front of me for the first time. Her hair started growing back on the top and was longer on the bottom (kinda like a mullet ha!). We stood in the bathroom while she straightened the longer strands that were growing. She was so happy and so was I.

The hard moments were always when she started losing more hair or found new spots. I hated getting those tearful phone calls.

BUT this story has happy ending! A year after meeting her and by the end of our internship she was able to no longer wear her wig! Her hair grew back almost completely. This was such an exciting time after such a tough journey of ups and downs.

So fast forward two years later. I am now married and living in a different city. We continue to keep in touch almost everyday and talk on the phone several times a week. I had a thought of always wanting donate my hair because of Ashley and wanted to do it with her but didn't know how she felt about cutting her now luscious locks.

She had mentioned it to me several months ago and I joyfully said "I have ALWAYS wanted to do that with you". We decided we would do it sometime down the road (Like a YEAR or more down the road). As the month of July approached we thought how cool would it be to donate/cut our hair the weekend she was diagnosed 4 years ago. So we made the appointment and we did it. It was fun and cool and our bond is now that much deeper. Plus I think we both got pretty cute cuts:)

Ashley will forever be more than just a friend to me. She is more like a sister, a soul sister. So maybe that sounds super cheesy and maybe it is but it's the only way I can describe it. 

Another thing about my friend Ashley is that she is a big exhorter to people she loves and quite honestly because she feels love that way too. Because of this she writes a lot of notes and cards. I have saved them all in a box. I was going through them the other day and came across a beautiful friendship in the Bible that can only expound on Ashley and my relationship. 

It is speaks of the friendship of Jonathan and David. "As soon as he had finished speaking to Saul, the soul of Jonathan was knit to the soul of David, and Jonathan loved him as his own soul...And Jonathan stripped himself of the robe that was on him and gave it to David, and his armor, and even his sword and his bow and his belt...(1 Samuel 18:1-4 ESV)

The soul of Ashley is knit to the soul of mine and I love her as my own soul. I could write a million blogs on moments, stories and interactions with my best friend but I know for a fact that we are soul sisters to the end. I would give everything, including my hair over and over again for the sweetness and depth of our friendship.

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Thank you for reading! Feel free to comment:)