On Saturday 12th September 2015 we lost one of the good ones, my friend Jen lost her long battle with that which shall not be named. Much has been said about Jen and frankly its hard to think of anything original, she was a one off, mad as a box of frogs, a teenager trapped in an adults body and one of the nicest people you’ll ever meet. She had been poorly for a long time and unless you were told, you would never have known, she lived her life with a smile on her face with a warmth in her heart. Even on her bad days when the pain got the better of her she’d still take time to listen to me moan about man flu or my latest football injury, usually followed by her telling me I was getting too old to play anymore…..the jury’s still out on that one.
Jen and Jerome were man and wife for only a few months but they shared a bond that some people will never know, they are two pieces of a puzzle that just completely clicked. I’ve known Jen for just over 2 years and I’ve never seen her as happy as when she knew Jerome was making the journey from “darn sarf” to see his lady. They got married in private a few months ago with only immediate family present, with the grand celebration planned for February next year. Sadly due a change in circumstances a small wedding reception was organised which I was asked to photograph, I knew this was going to be a great occasion as Jen didn’t know how to have a bad time, but in the back of my mind I knew it was going to be tough to get through such an emotionally charged day.
It was no surprise to me that Jen had a smile on her face, she was in her dress, surrounded by her closest friends and family, showing off the man she loved to the world this time with rings on their fingers. Regardless of what pain she was in she had a great day, obviously aspects were overwhelming, such as her dad standing up and doing an impromptu reading of marriage vows which would cause even the manliest of men to get a lump in his throat. The first dance summed it all up for me, they didn’t take their eyes off each other and both beamed from ear to ear, for that small 3 minute window there was no one else there with them but each other. As the afternoon moved on more friends and family appeared and the good times kept coming, lots of hugs, lots of smiles and lots of gin.
I could go on and on talking about what an amazing person she was, you only need to look online to see the hundreds and hundreds of messages of both support and fond memories being shared. I can just say i’m thankful to say I was able to know her, be part of their special day and that she was able to see the photographs before we lost her. People could do a lot worse than take a leaf out of Jens book, smile, drink, don’t take yourself too seriously, love whoopee cushions and surround yourself with the people you love the most.
All I can say is thank you Jen & Jerome for letting me share such a special and personal day, Jen may be gone but never forgotten, I hope we can all do you proud.