11/22/2011 09:54 am ET | Updated Jan 22, 2012

Adele's '21' and the Suburban Mom

I'll cut to the chase:




Wait. Did I mention that I love Adele? Because in case I wasn't clear: I LOVE ADELE.

I usually like to think I'm special, but when it comes to my complete and utter love of Adele, I'm so clearly not: she's sold 4.3 million copies of her most recent album, "21," in the U.S. alone. One of those 4.3 million copies is currently in the CD player of my black Volvo station wagon. The one in which I drive around belting out "Someone Like You" when I'm alone and when I think no one's watching.


It occurred to me as I was singing and weeping and driving and sobbing one day not long ago, that I couldn't possibly be the only middle-aged suburban mother singing to Adele in her car as if her life depended on it. Again, I'm not that special! There must be others like me who, after watching the black-and-white music video shot in Paris and hearing her voice crack with the pain of raw emotion (currently at 40,555,211 views on YouTube), were instantly debilitated by memories of past heartbreak from "When They Were Young." When I made and posted my Xtranormal video, "Driving Under the Influence of Adele (DUIA)," lots of people started confessing to me -- in public! on Twitter and Facebook! -- that they do the same thing. If this song had been available in 1989 when I truly believed I was going to die of a broken heart -- the one that inspired me to write my first novel, "Animal Husbandry." I probably never would have left my What-Will-Become-of-Me? couch because I would have been listening to the song all day, every day, until the cassette tape wore out. I especially love the irony that this song has the same title as the movie version of the novel. It makes me feel just a little closer to Adele and just a little more special than any of her other 4.3 million American record buyers.