Do you ever hear a song on the radio that is decades old and used to be on heavy rotation in your house when it first came out and suddenly listen to it with new ears out of nowhere?

When “In Your Eyes” came out it was so beautiful.  I listened to it all the time.  It was one of “our songs” with a boyfriend.  It was the theme to one of his proms and I got a champagne glass with that song title printed on it.  I made out in cars to it.  I chased down the expanded version.  I watched “Say Anything” a dozen times and bought the soundtrack as well as the Peter Gabriel “So” album.  I was a little in love with Lloyd Dobler. I have secretly fantasized that a boy would some day make that kind of boom box declaration of love for  me.  It was on the mix tapes my boyfriend and I made each other.  When it came on, all conversation froze and we just sat there in teenage, Gaga, awe of each other.

And then one day, it just faded into the background and became one of those songs played on every station, from alternative, to listener supported to soft rock.  It was still a good song.  I could leave it on in the background but didn’t have any special reaction to it.  Or, sometimes I would change the station to look for something newer I may not have heard before.  But never did I not appreciate the song.  It was just part of the every day noise.

Today, it was on and for whatever reason I was open to hearing it again like it was the first time.  I listened to every lyric to see where in my present day the words might resonate.  I fondly remembered some of the old high school memories like the Catholic retreat we went on and were asked to come up with a quote that resonated with us.  Kris Ann picked a line from that song because she started dating a boy that day at our retreat and they were googly for each other.  Why that memory stuck with me, I have no idea.  And I remembered how Steve and I sucked at being comfortable with silence so we would occasionally just develop this nervous habit of repeatedly saying “I’m sorry” to each other for no reason.

I also thought about the sound of the song, the amazing African influence and all the songs I have heard since then with similar roots.  In fact, I love all African influenced Peter Gabriel songs the best of all his work.  “Biko” was always a pretty cool song.  I developed a whole different understanding and appreciation for the song today just driving to work.

I wondered if this is how long term relationships operate.  In the beginning, you pretty much overplay each other because you can’t get enough.  And then, eventually, you just get used to it. You never hate your love.  But you don’t get excited about him/her the same way as time goes on.  You haven’t stopped loving but you have stopped longing.  Sometimes you even tune him/her out but without malice.  Just the indifference of habit.  You may even meet someone new and flirt for the excitement but don’t cheat.  You just needed to experience something different.  And then one day, you are doing something routine like driving to work.  You hear a song and all that excitement and depth rushes back to you.  You experience your love with new eyes and you get excited again – you re-ignite.