Today I am filled with gratitude and sadness. I am filled with gratitude because I have been blessed to have Jennifer E. as a close friend for the last year. I am sad because tonight Jen & I say our goodbyes as in the morning she moves to Texas. I will miss her deeply.
Jen was born & raised in Germany. Her upbringing, while filled with love, was also filled with emotional and physical abuse. Jen’s family was poor and they scrapped by to get everything they had. When Jen was only 18, she married an American man. Shortly there after she became as US citizen and gave birth to her son Collin.
However, Jen’s trial were just beginning. She and her husband were struggling in their marriage and with money. To help with the family income, Jen joined the US Navy. Once in the Navy she did multiple unaccompanied tours to IRAQ & Afghanistan during a time of war. This means she had to leave both her husband and son behind to go fight the war for 6-18 months at a time. And yes, Jen did see real combat action. Eventually, her marriage fell apart and they divorced.
From abused and impoverished in Germany to combat in Iraq to a divorced single parent in the US, Jen has seen some truly tough times all before the age of 30. However, Jen is a survivor. Picking up the pieces and wanting better for herself and her son, she enrolled in college. Over the last 3 years, Jen has worked tirelessly to get her bachelor’s degree all while working full time in the Navy and being a single mom. She graduated with a 3.89 GPA and is the first in her family to earn their degree.
After 8 years of service, Jen is leaving the military in pursuit of her dreams. Tomorrow, Jen and Collin move to Texas. In February, Jen will be taking the LSAT. The divorced, combat veteran, poverty-raised & abused girl from Germany is going to Law School.
So, you see, I am overjoyed! Jen is going to follow her dreams. Jen is going to Law School. Jen is out of harms way. She and her son will have a better life – AN AMAZING LIFE! I am so thankful that this is happening to Jen. But I am so sad because she is leaving me. True, we will still text and Facebook but it’s not the same.
In selfish moments I think to myself who will I get drunk with? The only person I drink with is Jen. Who will laugh hysterically with me at oddball British comedies? Who will I cry to? Who will I borrow milk from when I’m too lazy to run to the store? Who won’t judge me for my lust for Navy Seals & all things Star Trek? Who can I fart in front of and laugh? Who is going to accept me for me like Jen does? And the answer is nobody because their is only one Jen. And that’s why I love her.
Jen, if you are reading this, I want you to know, I love you. You are an inspiration not only to me, but your son. Collin may be too young to realize how incredible your story is but someday, when he is older, all that you have done and overcome, will help him to be a great man. Jen, I wish for you all good things in abundance. Joy. Love. Health. Wealth. You are a gift. Thank you for being my friend.