The Story Behind the Song
I was fiddling around with that line and this song started to take shape. I was thinking about myself at seventeen, holed up in my room listening to Janis Ian, crying over how far I was from those airbrushed pictures in the magazines. I had my daughter in mind, though, when I wrote the verse about men being from another planet; she had just had a bad breakup and young men can be so idiotic when it comes to communication (from a female perspective, of course).
My hair started to turn grey when I was in my mid-thirties. I was going to go "natural" at first - no toxic hair dye for me! That didn't last very long, grey hair makes you look old, and that makes you feel old. I have long been known for refusing to act my age. Since I went back to L'Oreal's cure for looking old, people say I don't look my age either.
As for being as old as you feel in your bones, I had a few years, right after my RA diagnosis, where I felt about 92 (and I was in my forties), but I've met enough people now who are actually in their nineties to know that it really is about how you feel "in your heart and in your mind".
The first time she heard this song, the wonderful songwriter Christine DeLeon told me that she liked the way it came full circle. I do too. You might think, at first listen, that the last verse is trite, or cliche, but I really mean it - and I've lived it. Losing my sister, living with RA, these are the things that taught me that life really doesn't "always go the way you planned", and I am totally serious when I tell you that I fully intend to "do one thing that I love every day I'm alive".
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