The Do-Over / by Susie Lubell

The mystery of my daughter's favorite song is now over. We can all sleep again. You may remember (THOUGH I DOUBT IT) that on my birthday my daughter had a near seizure in the car on our way home from San Francisco because I changed the radio station and she wanted her favorite song which was not on any station at all and anyway it was before she had tubes and could hear in the first place so I was at a loss. But she wailed her head off about it for a good fifteen minutes which feels a lot like seventeen hours when you're stuck in a car with someone doing that. But then today, as I was driving them to preschool, we heard the interlude song that follows the California Report by Rachael Myrow on NPR and this, ladies and gentlemen, appears to be my daughter's favorite song.

Her (with glee): Mommy this song is my favorite!
Me: This one?
Her: Ya! My song my favorite!
Him (passionately): Mommy, this song is my favorite song too that I never heard before. I never heard it a lot of times and now it's my favorite. It used to be on a lot on the radio but then we never heard it for a long time ago. I LOVE this song.

Really, that's verbatim. I don't know what the hell my son was trying to say. Sometimes he sounds like Yoda.

Which brings me back to my birthday. With your encouragement I decided that today I would reenact my birthday, at least for a little while, and enjoy the crap out of it. So I dropped off the kids at 9:00 and then drove to where the Anthropologie is in Palo Alto. They don't open until 10:00 but knowing this I brought along my laptop and went to Coupa Cafe, the very cafe where on my 35th birthday I sat sobbing about how nothing was as it should be and I made the famous list of things to do to achieve happiness. These included finding a loving, nurturing preschool with a low teacher/child ratio, a Jewish family learning component and an Israeli style play-based environment AND starting my business 15 hours a week while my kids are in this magical school. Check and check. Turns out there were no available outlets so I could not write this blog there which was my original intention and instead enjoyed my croissant and latte without bothering to multitask. This felt odd at first, doing just one thing, but then I let myself sink into it and for the next half hour enjoyed watching people in the crowded cafe while I reflected on my transformational year.

Soon it was 10:00 and I was off to Anthropologie where I used my birthday discount to buy two blouses and a tablecloth that were already half off so the bill came to under $100.

And so concludes this year's birthday saga. Thirty-six is looking up.