No, my son’s name is not “Dude”. Yes, he was named after a Beetle’s song and cancer totally sucks! And now that I’ve gotten all that off my chest, let me explain. When we are out and about there have been many occasions at the park, at a store, even at a restaurant where we have said our son’s name out loud and a random person will ask, “Is your son’s name, Dude?” This question has come from young people, older people, men and women. It’s so strange to me that it’s happened more than once. So, I am here to put this out there once and for all, No, our son’s name is not “DUDE”, it is however, Jude. Like the Beatle’s song “Hey, Jude” And here’s why we named our son after a Beatle’s song….
I still remember the Beatle’s picture hanging above Freddy’s sofa in his home. The last time I saw it was when we were moving all of his belongings out knowing he wouldn’t be returning home but, not knowing what was happening to Freddy.
We lost my brother-in-law, Freddy, 6 years ago. Jude was born three days before the anniversary of my brother-in-law’s death. It was so special to have him born around this time, because it was such a hard and sad time for our family. My husband and I wanted to name our new son after his brother, but didn’t really want to use his first or middle name. Instead we thought of his favorite band “The Beatles” and our favorite song that reminded us of losing Freddy, “Hey, Jude.” Nothing seemed more appropriate than the name Jude for our special little angel. When I was pregnant with Jude, we would listen to the words of the song and remember our times with Freddy. “Hey, Jude don’t make it bad, take a sad song and make it better.” Boy, that was the motto to Freddy’s life. Anyone that knew him would tell you that he could make any situation better, he was the life of every party. He was the type of person that made you feel special and could always make you feel like you were the only person in the room. He lived life like there was no tomorrow, he literally lived like he was dying. And he was but he didn’t know it.
Freddy had been suffering with diabetes for years. I think that he felt many of the symptoms were part of that illness. It turned out that when he went to the doctor it was cancer that had progressed so far that he had no time left. When they went in to operate the tumor was so large they had to retreat. We lost him a month after his diagnosis.
He was 43.
Freddy’s Bear sits in the corner of Jude’s room, we call him “Freddy Bear”. His employees brought this beautiful bear to him before he passed. He reminds me of Freddy; sweet, cuddly, safe, warm and larger than life. Freddy was all those things to me. There were many times he counseled me, protected me, and made me feel safe. He was a father figure to my husband and I, we miss him everyday.
After the failed attempt to remove the tumor the doctors suggested that our family not let Freddy know that he was going to die. He was a very large man and they feared that he would rip his tubes out and complicate his pain further. How do you look at a person and tell them they are going to be fine knowing that they are not? How do you live with that everyday of your life? Part of the reason I picked this verse was to remind Jude and my family that we can’t carry everything with us. We make choices, some good, some bad, some for the good of others and we carry that weight. But there comes a time when we have to let go. We can’t always carry the burden of our choices, of our mistakes, and of our sacrafices. We live, we learn, we ask for forgiveness, we pray, and we change. This verse is a reminder to all of us to do these things.
Freddy always cared about others. His parents and his siblings first and his friends second. Every weekend he visited his mother and father. He called his mother at least once a day, if not more. And even in his last moments on this earth he was worried about his parents. His last wish was that my husband, his younger brother by 18 years, would make sure that their parents would always be taken care of. To this day that promise has been fulfilled. It’s been one year since we were transferred away from my husband’s parents.
To be continued……….
Update: Jude’s room is nearly finished. Here are some links to other projects that have been completed…