Years ago, I used to love watching Ally McBeal. It was back when I was at Yale, and there was a certain intrigue about lawyers, about living in Boston. About the once-in-a-lifetime kind of friendships that the characters had found in their co-workers. Even back then, I recognized that their office was different, special. And John Cage had a remote control flusher for the toilet, so of course I was enchanted by that.
At one point in the show, Ally is advised by her therapist that she should find a theme song. Something to play in her head, something to make her happy.
The thing is, ever since I was a tiny girl riding the school bus in Minnesota, I’ve been obsessed with this idea that my life had a soundtrack. A cheerful song would play as I ran down a hill, or turned quizzically to look at a camera, or you know, performed a peppy dance in my front yard. I’m not really sure why this idea ever hit me, or appealed to me, but it was all brought back to my mind with that Ally McBeal episode.
My theme song hasn’t changed since about 1997. Perhaps it is a strange choice. But I think that in it’s simplicity, it perfectly explains a life long search for knowledge, for learning to be at peace with myself, at a yearning for understanding and compassion that never seems to quite be finished. My theme song is “I still haven’t found what I’m looking for.”
To me, this song speaks to a life long search for fulfillment, for understanding, and ultimately for love. It seems like a story many of us know, and one that I can relate to. As a younger person, I searched high and low for that one person who “completed me.” Someone who fit the Disney version of what every little girl dreams of, and in that weird quest for a prince charming, somewhere I think I lost my way. I changed who I was to fit into someone else’s idea of “perfection,” and I ignored obviously problematic parts of his family and upbringing. There’s no truth in a relationship like that, and it led me to a place that was as “cold as a stone.”
In the years since getting a divorce, I’ve come to better know God, and in turn, better understand myself. It has not been an easy road. Understanding and fully embracing Jesus, and his role in our story has been another amazing challenge for me. Yes, I believe it, and yet, I feel like somehow, I am still “running.”
Maybe it’s been a little while since you last heard U2’s song?
What is your theme song?
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