My good friend and heart-sister, Rev. Melissa Ashton (previously Burchfield) married the love of her life, Rev. William Ashton II, last month in her new home of Longmont, CO. I was fortunate to not only be able to attend but to serve as her Matron of Honor.  During the ceremony they allowed for a time where guests could come forward and speak words or make offerings on behalf of the bride or groom to help everyone see different facets of them through the eyes of their friends and family.  I found this to be an absolutely lovely idea, and it was easily the part of the ceremony when I was in most need of the tissues I smartly packed into the pocket of my magnificent Matron of Honor dress.  But not only did it allow all of us to see Missy and William through each other’s eyes, it allowed them to see as well.

We don’t always take the time or create the space where we can really express how we feel about each other.  I’m sure glad that I had this opportunity to tell The Missy.  I think about the eulogy I wrote on this blog for A.J., and I wish I would have told him those things while he was still here to listen.   I will look for and create opportunities to eulogize those I love in the here and now and not wait until they are gone before I express how I feel.


What can I say about Missy?

I have often called her “The Missy,” and I’ve finally figured out why.

It’s because she deserves an article, because she is a Force of Nature; like The Sun, The Moon, The Ocean, The Wind.

She glows, she sparkles, she moves you, blows through you, crashes over you with her expansive presence.

Some people can’t stand too close to her majesty.  They are blinded by her light, overwhelmed by her heat, or knocked down by the sheer force of her Magnificent Missyness.  Those people are unworthy of The Missy.

But those of us who have proven ourselves worthy have found ourselves blessed beyond measure.  She enlivens us.  She buoys us up.  She shares with us her mysteries and gently blows away our fears.

She blesses us with her music that gets stuck in our heads and makes its home in our hearts, always ready to burst forth when we need to hear it.  She blesses us with the way her nose crinkles up as we relish her laughter and bask in her smile.  She blesses us with the power of her intellect, whether expounding on blood diseases and medical procedures, writing an ADF study program, or analyzing a ritual.




Because The Missy remembers where she comes from as she blazes new trails; ever learning, ever growing, ever striving to be the best Missy she can be.

And with William, the most worthy of partners, standing beside her, she’s going to continue to change the world for the better—like a mutha’ fuckin’ adult.

Big. Red. Heart.