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“And anytime you feel the pain, hey Jude, refrain
Don't carry the world upon your shoulders
For well you know that it's a fool who plays it cool
By making his world a little colder.”
As the lyrics went on, tears fell down my face. I looked back again to see my son smiling, and laughing in his car seat. Just moments ago, I was the calm one and he was the one crying.
So, what happened?
I activated my Netflix account several months ago, and a new show popped up that actually managed to keep my son still for at least a minute or two. Beat Bugs… Beat Bugs? Well, let’s see how it goes. Each episode of Beat Bugs has two mini-episodes, named after Beatles' songs. I didn't catch on. You see, I wasn't directly introduced to The Beatles. I broke away from my father's favorite music he grew up with, and went on to listen to bands like The Doors (just to name a favorite from the era).
Before you judge my music tastes, understand that I was raised on music, and even had my own pop-rock band at one point. It was heavily influenced by those late 90's bands that you still hear producing royalties on the radio. And yes, of course, I heard of The Beatles. But knowing something is not the same thing as listening to it.
"Two Of Us", "Yesterday," "Tax Man," "Let It Be," the list goes on. At this point, my son knew more about The Beatles than I did.
For about a month, my family and I have been unpacking, on top of me having to cut a good friend out of my life, and constantly taking my wife to the doctor. I was stressed out of my mind. I started to slowly shut down, with only my two-year-old son to keep me company for most of the day. Just seven months ago, my wife and I miscarried, and we had just passed the date our second child was due. There was a lot going on, and I didn't know how to properly deal with it all. I did what came naturally to me, which was to bury it deep down and move forward.
The other night, my son had fallen asleep in my car as I went to do a last minute errand. On my way back, my son began crying uncontrollably. I quickly thought to myself, "I wonder if I play him a Beatles song if he would remember his favorite cartoon? Maybe that would calm him down." YouTube recommended "Hey Jude."
It was nice hearing a Beatles song actually come from The Beatles. Beat Bugs had me used to their version of the songs. This song really is beautiful… Wow. The song didn't go much further before I started listening to the lyrics. And there I was, listening to a song speaking to me while my son began laughing and smiling. It worked. He was loving it! There was something particularly beautiful about his connection to the song. It had occurred to me that The Beatles and their genre was quite similar to the genre of music I wrote as a teenager. You take that realization and put that with the lyrics to the song, and you have what I experienced. It was like a moment of clarity. This song representing so much from a band I never actually gave a chance. I couldn’t remember the last time a song made me this happy. Tears streamed down my face as the song continued.
“Wow,” I thought. “So this is The Beatles.”