Be glad if yours isn’t "highway to hell"

Do you have a life “theme” song?

I was watching TV last week, the new show Brothers and Sisters (which I can’t decide if I like it or not… you know, the one with Callista Flockhart) which reminded me of Ally McBeal. Loved that show, btw.

Anyway, if you remember, in the show Ally had a “theme song”, a song that she went to whenever life was down, disconnected, sad, etc…. I think I remember it being “My Everything” by Barry White. When life handed her a raw deal, she would think of the song and it would immediately perk her up. At the time, I remember thinking how stupid that was… sorta like the dancing baby and the odd occurrences in the unisex bathroom. Just a plot ploy to beg for laughs.

Anyhoo, this got me wondering, do I have a theme song for my life? The harder I thought about it, the more songs came to mind… and my little reflection ended up keeping me awake in bed one night thinking about it.

I had songs in my head, not so much an overall song, but ones that defined my life at the time.

Example, the high school years… probably would have to be “Purple Rain” or anything off of that album (yes, I said album). It was the epitome of teenage angst and an anthem for being different. Much like Nirvana was to teens of the 90’s, I guess. I can remember blasting Purple Rain and feeling so much emotion. When I got banished to my room by my parents for issue du jour, it was my saving grace. Prince saved my teenage years from going too bad, I think. lol.

Flash forward to the late eighties, my college years. the song that came to mind first was not a song I especially liked, but rather one that I couldn’t escape… “Welcome to the Jungle” (Guns + Roses). Memories of frat parties in the basement of the Phi Kap house, and the lovely combination of beer and ammonia sloshing between your toes (which is why most girls would stand on the benches that lined the basement to get our flip flops out of the ickyiness). Music of choice, anything that you could dance to and went well with beer. For that reason, I also must note that my all-time HATED song of college was “Paradise by the Dashboard Light”, which was always played at the end of the night when you were too drunk to care. College of course was the years of the unknown, no one really knew what life held for them, but it was college life in the big city that ruled. I was young, we were young, and life was all that lay ahead. And it was exciting.

Then, the 90’s, which were the years of my first job out of college, and marrying my honey. I was so afraid to cry walking down the aisle on my wedding day, so I sang a peppy Vince Gill song in my head (“One More Last Chance”) to keep my mind off of the wedding march song. It worked. And if you don’t know country music, that won’t make much sense.

Of course, along the way, there are many songs that could have easily been applied before I had David, when S. and I worked to earn our first house. I was in my oldies phase for a while and loved listening to 70’s music, a la Diana Ross “she works hard for the money”.

And then there was 2003 when our little bundle of joy arrived and set our lives into a tailspin, being parents for the first time. S. and I would get teary eyed listening to Alan Jackson’s “Remember When”, which marked so many milestones we already achieved.

Remember when old ones died and new were born
And life was changed, disassembled, rearranged
We came together, fell apart
And broke each other’s hearts
Remember when

Remember when the sound of little feet
was the music
We danced to week to week
Brought back the love, we found trust
Vowed we’d never give it up
Remember when

Remember when thirty seemed so old
Now lookn’ back it’s just a steppin’ stone
To where we are,
Where we’ve been
Said we’d do it all again
Remember when

I know I am getting old when I cry at a favorite 80’s song, something that is completely not a depressing song, but one that holds so many life memories. Such as the Pretenders, “Don’t Get Me Wrong”:

Dont get me wrong
If I come and go like fashion
I might be great tomorrow
But hopeless yesterday

Dont get me wrong
If I fall in the mode of passion
It might be unbelievable
But lets not say so long
It might just be fantastic
Dont get me wrong

Lately, I’ve grown philosophical about aging. The crazy thing about getting older is the years tick by but the longer and faster they move along, you still feel like a kid. I may be pushing 40, but I still feel the little girl alive and well.

When we are young, we are in such a hurry to move forward, and after a certain point, you want to freeze in time, just for a little while. Reflection becomes an asset, and seeing the past in 20/20 is inescapable…

15 there’s still time for you
Time to buy, Time to lose yourself
Within a morning star
15 I’m all right with you
15, there’s never a wish better than this
When you only got 100 years to live
Half time goes by
Suddenly you’re wise
Another blink of an eye
67 is gone
The sun is getting high
We’re moving on…

So, unlike Ally, I don’t think I can come up with a life theme song. There are just too many to choose from and I am not prepared to lock in on one. Plus, I am finicky, and if I choose one, I’ll undoubtedly want to change it later. So, what’s the point?

I’ll take them all.

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