He Never Thought That His Relationship Was Over After Giving a Neck Massage

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What Makes Their Love Story Different from Others?


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Jake & Emmy Quickly Formed a Strong Bond

Jake & Emmy Quickly Formed a Strong Bond

They met for the first time when they were 11 years old. Jake Coates is a young boy from Monmouth, Wales. Emmy Collet is from Luckington, Wilshire. After their first meeting, they quickly formed a strong bond. Emmy Collet told in an interview that she had a “school girl crush” on Jake. This started pretty soon after their encounter. She was 11 years when it happened and never expected it to last even when they became teenagers.



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“If You Can Still Bear Me, I Will Marry You”

“If You Can Still Bear Me, I Will Marry You”

When they were 13 years old, he called her “lobster”. It is a reference to the TV show “Friends.” Although they are both very young, they have strong feelings for each other. This puppy love between them will mark the beginning of their amazing love story. In high school, Jake wrote Emmy an adorable note: “You are everything to me. If you can still bear me, I will marry you one day.” Sadly, everybody knows that high school lovers cannot stay together forever. Soon they had to follow their own paths and futures.



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Heartbroken by the Idea of Breaking Up

Heartbroken by the Idea of Breaking Up

The two of them were heartbroken by the idea of ​​breaking up, because why would you end a relationship if you both still in love with each other? but it was difficult to find another solution to the problem. They wanted to go to different schools, and it is no secret that most couples break up before or during college. Jake & Emmy also knew that university would be full of parties, temptations, and new friends & potential lovers.



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From Lovers to Close Friends, to Back Being Lovers?

From Lovers to Close Friends, to Back Being Lovers?

As many predicted they broke up after high school. The moment their paths separated, their relationship was not the same anymore. But even though they choose different universities, and lived their separate lives, they were still close friends and spoke as much as possible. Both felt like their love for each other was not over. Fortunately, they reunited in 2015. At that time, the two of them had been apart for 10 years. Everything seems to be going well for them.



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Back Together After a Decade

Back Together After a Decade

As you can imagine, they were very happy to be reunited. For them, it felt like this was fate bringing them back together. At the time, Jake was working in medicine in Sydney, Australia and Emmy was working as a teacher in London. Although they lived so far away from each other, the couple was confident that, after getting together after a decade and living on other sides of the world, they could cope with every challenge.



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Time for the Next Step in Their Relationship

10.000 Miles Apart, but Going Strong

Although they were 10.000 miles apart, they tried to invest as much time as possible in their relationship. They Facetimed every day and they tried to visit each other as much as possible. But after six months, their arrangement changed. The couple was in their twenties, they had grown up and so had their relationship. In 2016, Jake thought it was time to take their relationship to the next level. Do you remember writing his highschool love note? He decided it was time to make good on his promise.



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The Neck Massage That Changed Everything

The Neck Massage That Changed Everything

Jake wasn’t a person who (always) kept his promises, so he’s planned everything: he would ask Emmy to marry him on a cliff with a beautiful view in the Philippines with fireworks in the background. Sadly, before this happened, something unexpected happened. The weeks before their trips Emmy travelled to Sydney. The day before she would leave for London, Emmy asked Jake for a neck massage. This way she would be completely relaxed for her long flight back home.



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He Immediately Realized Something Was Wrong

He Immediately Realized Something Was Wrong

Jake found her request perfectly normal and didn’t think it was a problem at all. In fact, they did this quite often, because both knew how stressful long flights could be. So he obliged, but this time it would turn out differently than expected. Jake gently placed his hand on her neck and started massaging her. Soon he realized that there was a problem. He never thought that he would feel this and once he realized what was going on Jake froze.



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Jakes Blood Ran Cold

Jakes Blood Ran Cold

“We were sat in a restaurant on a Sunday afternoon – a really sunny, beautiful day – and I just put my hands around her neck from behind and I knew straight away. My blood ran cold”, Jake told about his ‘discovery’. He’s discovered a lump on his girlfriend’s neck and immediately thought the worst and went into panic mode. “We were just two people in love lying on a beach in Sydney without a care in the world… who would have known what was to happen next…,” Jake says.



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The couple’s worst nightmare was about to come true

The Couple’s Worst Nightmare Was About to Come True

Jake wanted to know why Emmy had never told him about this, but he did not want to worry her, so he decided to tell her to under-go a check-up with her general practitioner as soon as possible. Emmy, a little bit worried, followed his advice as soon as she got back to the United Kingdom, but the result was, unfortunately, not what they hoped for. The couple’s worst nightmare was about to come true…



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Emmy’s Cancer Was Incurable

Emmy’s Lab results Didn’t Bring Good News

Instead of prepping for their well-deserved vacation to the Philippines, the couple had to prepare for something completely different and which is to describe as someone worse nightmare, because Emmy’s lab results were in and they, unfortunately, did not bring good news. Without realizing Emmy had become one of the UK’s youngest people to develop a very rare type of thyroid cancer. To make it worse: the doctors also told her that cancer had spread to her liver, spine, lungs and bones. Emmy’s cancer was incurable…



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This Couldn’t Be the End

This New Changed Their Perspectives

When Jake & Emmy found each other again after a decade of separation, they never expected their lives would turn out this way. Both were convinced they would spend the rest of their lives together, but this news changed their perspectives completely. Jake: “She had been complaining about not feeling great for a while but no one had ever felt her neck.” Even though they had only been together for six months, Jake decided to get on the plane to London and stand by her side. This couldn’t be the end, right?



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She Received More Unpleasant News

She Received More Unpleasant News

Both Emmy as Jake decided that this disease wouldn’t defeat them. They accepted it and prepared for a battle. Like almost everything else in life, Emmy treated her situation with optimism. Friends & family were there to help her in every way they could as she was admitted to the Royal Marsden Hospital in London. Emmy: “Believe it or not I am happier than ever. Love truly is the best drug and I have been totally smothered in it.” Once at the hospital she received even more unpleasant news.



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Emmy Was Devastated, but Wouldn’t Give Up Hope

Emmy Was Devastated, but Wouldn’t Give Up Hope



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Their Wedding Gave Her the Hope She Needed

Their Engagement Gave Her the Hope She Needed

Because of what Jake discovered while giving the neck massage, he had no choice but to postpone the proposal for a while. He planned on asking her in the Philippines but this wasn’t possible anymore. So he decided to do the opposite: small, simple but sweet. Jake asked Emmy to marry him while they were drinking tea in bed. Without any doubt, she said “Yes!” Their wedding gave her the hope she needed. Planning their wedding gave Emmy some space to focus on things other than her dire situation. Which led to several surprises on the way…



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“Smile, Love & Be Kind”

“Smile, Love & Be Kind”

Neither Jake nor Emmy did not want to focus on the downside of Emmy’s sickness. They simply decided that they would enjoy each other’s remaining time. So they started planning for their future, even though they both had no idea how long their future together would be. Emmy, too, remained hopeful despite her illness. The motto of Emmy, at the time, was: “Smile, love and be kind.” Which she followed no matter how bleak the situation.



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The Engaged Couple “Ran Away”

The Engaged Couple “Ran Away”

The moment Emmy started her cancer treatments, she had to take medicines that required her to stay out of the sun as much as possible. Although this was very disappointing, Emmy tried to live with it as much as possible. And despite this, the engaged couple “ran away” to Dubai for a well-deserved 5-day vacation trip. The moment the lovebirds arrived back in the United Kingdom, Emmy and her future husband started something very inspiring.



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Emmy Proved Strong She Was While Battling Cancer

A Productive & Optimistic future Mrs Coates

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Soon-to-be Mrs Coates refused to stay in bed all day because she was sick. No, Emmy wanted to stay productive and optimistic. So, she decided to start a fundraiser for the hospital where she received her cancer treatments. Together with Jake, Emmy decided to take a bike ride through Europe. They started in London and ended their bike ride in Copenhagen. The bike ride took them 1998 km, but it was worth it. The couple managed to raise more than £140,000. The love birds took matching tattoos to remember their adventure.



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For Them It Felt Like They Were Soulmates

For Them It Felt Like They Were Soulmates

What started as high school lovers – or even elementary school lovers – developed into something much more special. Jake and Emmy felt like they were soulmates; especially since they found each other again while living in different parts of the world and after being separated for so long. After so many setbacks and Emmy bravely undergoing her cancer treatments, it was finally time for some light in this dark period. Which was the most beautiful day of their lives…



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“Marry This Girl, the Love of My Life”

“Marry This Girl, the Love of My Life”

In September 2016, the lovebirds finally got married and it was indeed the most beautiful day of their lives – so far. Their future might have seen bleak at that moment, but this did not stop them from smiling and being happy the whole day. Jake could not sleep the night before because he was super excited to see his beautiful soon-to-be wife and because he was about to “marry this girl, the love of my life.



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Raising Public Awareness With Their Story

Raising Public Awareness With Their Story

Because of the Coates’ heartbreaking situation, they were receiving public attention. How so? Emmy was of course a school teacher and with all her experience, she began writing children’s books. This way, she did something useful while undergoing her cancer treatments. She did all this while also undergoing her cancer treatments. Meanwhile, Jake won the ITV Fundraiser of the Year Award at the Pride of Britain Awards for their bicycle fundraiser. Also, Emmy started blogging about her life and sickness to write down her emotions and experiences.



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Emmy’s Blog Led to Something Wonderful

Despite writing and releasing the children’s books and winning a fundraiser prize, most people knew their situation, because they had read Emmy’s blog. She started it with the intention to get her story out in the open, to write down her feelings & thoughts and maybe even reach some people. But she never intended it got this big because without knowing it Emmy’s blog led to something wonderful; something the couple never dared to dream of after Emmy became ill.



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Serval Women Offered To Help

They Didn’t Know How Much Time They Had Left

Regardless of what the doctors had mentioned about Emmy not being able to conceive children, the Coates still dreamed of becoming parents. It was their heart’s desire to expand their little family. Having a child was one of the things that kept the couple optimistic in the midst of their difficult life. They didn’t know how much time Emmy had left, so they went to a fertility specialist to take (nine) samples of her embryos and decided to find a surrogate mother.



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Liz Was the Best Person for the Job

Help From An Old Schoolmate

Emmy wrote on her blog about their plan to use a surrogate mother and to their surprise, several women offered their help to fulfil the lovebirds wish to be their surrogate. Former schoolmate Liz Begg – who still lived in the area – was touched by the Coates’ story that she offered her help. “I didn’t really know them at school but when Emmy started sharing her story on her blog, I knew I wanted to help.”



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Was Emmy Able to Live On?

Was Emmy Able to Live On?

The old schoolmate reached out to Emmy and agreed to meet with the couple. Liz: “Emmy was just something else – an incredible person and so positive.” After meeting with Liz, and several other women, the lovebirds decided that Liz was their favourite and that they wanted to continue this adventure with her. The couple promised they would be with her every step of the way. After the implantation procedure, they had to wait. All three were excited because they knew that if it had worked Emmy was able to live on, even if she’d lost her battle to cancer.



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Jake Had a Hard Time but Felt Really Honoured

Jake Had a Hard Time but Felt Really Honoured

Jake, being an expert in the field, had its perks. With his experience, he could assist Emmy with several medical procedures, like giving injections and monitoring her vitals. He loved taking care of and assisting her, but it also had its downsides. Jake found it especially hard to answer difficult questions and complex issues. Despite this, he was honoured, because he could help his wife in so many more ways than just being there for her ’emotionally’ and they might never have known she was this ill.



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“That Was the Most Perfect Day We Ever Spent Together”

Pregnancy Test Time

3 weeks after the implantation procedure Liz took a pregnancy test. “We sat around a table and watched three pregnancy tests turn positive one after the other,” Jake said about that specific day. Things started to look bright again. After several pregnancy tests turned positive they believed it had worked. “To experience that moment with Emmy and see the hope in her eyes was incredible,” Liz said about the day she found out she was carrying the Coates’ baby. “That was the most perfect day we ever spent together.” Unfortunately, it would be her last with Emmy…



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What Was He Going to Do Without Emmy?

Emmy Last Moments Spent Together

“Less than an hour after doing the tests Emmy could barely keep her eyes open – the tank was truly empty. Truth be told, Emmy never fully woke up,” told Jake sadly. He was with his wife in her last moments after a fight of 18 months against thyroid cancer. Jake knew it was her time and was comforted by this thought: “She died blissfully in the knowledge we were going to have our baby.” Emmy – 31 years old – passed away on June 16th, 2017.



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“My Lobster. My Wife”

The Pregnancy Wasn’t Successful

“She was my north, my south, my east, my west. The reason I wanted to wake up every morning and be a better person,” Jake said. What was he going to do without his beautiful, adventurous, persistent, kind wife? Unfortunately, his grief got even worse. While Jake was grieving Emmy’s death, he also found out that Liz’s pregnancy wasn’t successful. He and Liz tried twice more, but these times also were to no avail. “Liz has been the most selfless, kind, thoughtful, and gorgeous person throughout this whole process,” he said.



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The Pregnancy Wasn’t Successful

“My Lobster. My Wife”

“My co-captain on my bike. My best friend. My lobster. My wife. And truly my hero.” You can imagine that Jake was devastated. Although he felt this way about the unsuccessful pregnancies and the death of his wife, Jake refused to let grief take over his life. He had to find a way to deal with is grief and make sure his wife would carry on. In addition, the Coates’ love story went viral unintentionally on social media. Although Emmy died, people couldn’t stop talking about their heartbreaking, but beautiful, story.



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A Heartbreakingly Beautiful Story

A Heartbreakingly Beautiful Story

About 8 months after her passing, Jake’s life caused a stir in the UK. Jake had agreed with himself to run 10 marathons within the first 2 months of 2018, to raise money for The Royal Marsden Hospital. All to honour his late wife Emmy. While running a marathon in beautiful Iceland, Jake had unintentionally found something he never expected to happen ever again. Especially not so soon after Emmy’s passing and while he was still in the middle of his grieving process…



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All You Need Is Love

All You Need Is Love

Jake had found, in the midst of his grieving process, love again. You might wonder how it happened? Well, to achieve his goals, Jake had to run marathons abroad. One of those destinations was Iceland and that is where he ran into Jenna Selby. He was so happy with his new lover, that he started to post about her on his social media accounts and that caused quite a stir among his social media followers and ex-inlaws.



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Some Were Less Enthusiastic About His Choices

Some Were Less Enthusiastic About His Choices

While Jake and Jenna were living on cloud nine, Jakes social media followers and other media outlets noticed something remarkable. They found that Jenna looked a lot like Emmy. They even started to call her a lookalike. Most people were very concerned with Jake’s well-being after Emmy passed away, so they couldn’t be happier for him. They wished him the best life, after all the pain and sadness he had to endure the past months. Some were less enthusiastic about his choices…



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His In-laws Were Outraged

His In-laws Were Outraged

Unfortunately, there were also many followers who criticized Jake for falling in love, so quickly after Emmy’s passing. Several media outlets reported that mostly Jake’s in-laws – in particular his sister in law – were outraged that he got over Emmy so quickly and that the way he showed his new girlfriend off via his social media accounts, was very disrespectful to Emmy, but also to them. Jake’s felt he had to take matters into his own hands by giving an amazing response…



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“No One Was More Surprised Than Me”

I Don’t Have Any Space in My Life for Negativity

Jake: “The odd negative comments that have been written (by people that don’t know me or have any understanding of my life or what I have been through) have been deleted because I don’t have any space in my life for negativity.” He knows very well who short life can be, so he had to make the best of it. His life with Emmy showed him he had to value every minute of his life, Jenna and her son. They couldn’t be happier and are very thankful they have each other. Jake: “No one was more surprised than me.”



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In Honor of His Emmy


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Has Jake Kept His Promise?

Has Jake Kept His Promise?

He has a little art class for younger patients and he shares his experiences on his social media, so he can inform and inspire others. And what about all those marathons, has he kept his promise? In the end, Jake managed to run 9 marathons in 2 months. He had to travel over 2000 miles, pay extra entry fees and lost a toenail. None of this mattered because he did it in honour of his Emmy.



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Than This Happened…

Than This Happened…

You might think that poor Jake would finally be happy again and that he would live happily ever after, but you couldn’t be further from the truth. How so? Well, several media outlets let us know that Jenna & Jake split up in 2019, because of all the negativity they received. Jake’s mother to the New York Post: “Poor Jake was crucified by people when Emmy died, he was crucified when he remarried and now he’s being crucified again.” In addition, he also took his social media accounts down.