My daughter , Adelaide Mary Dever, was born 25 years ago to this very minute, Adelaide “Addy” is smart, beautiful, sassy and extremely creative… And is a very good person.
Without sharing too much of her personal information, let me just say a few words to honor her today. Living 500 miles apart is difficult, especially with unemployment an added barrier from frequent visits; but as I sit here in bed, I am moved to tears and can at least reminisce.
Her delivery into the world was easy — as was her temperament as a baby. I was twenty seven the year she was born, had had two previous miscarriages, with the ultimate reward — a daughter to add to our nice family of three. An instant perfect girl, Adelaide Mary was named for her grandmother (my mom) after we replaced the name Rachel when we first saw her in the delivery room. As delicate and fine featured as my mother, she was naturally an “Adelaide Mary” — and she was given her middle name for my husband’s mother, Mary Dever, from whom she got her strength I think.
So affectionate and a real cuddle bug — so pretty and just so sweet, she melted hearts and brought a peaceful joy to our home. Addy is my youngest child born seven years after her big brother, Peter, who is and was always a gift, too; but as all mothers know, this new child brought to this world her her very own sacred perfection and unique humanness.
Baby Addy would sleep well at night and be very shy waking in the mornings, so we had to check frequently to find her awake, silent and smiling warmly, when we peeked into the crib. Easy to smile and laugh, she soon became our silly “miss mouse” with “naked nelly” runs around the house after bath time — and LOTS of friends from a very early age. She was (and hopefully forever will be) Daddy’s girl, a blessing as women need their fathers (biological as well as our Lord God; whether they realize it or not).
She loved to wear dresses and had a favorite cow t-shirt and confetti sneakers at three. At four she dealt with a new love of purple, after her love affair with the color pink. She was a ballerina, a fierce bike rider, a lover of birds and dogs and hamsters, and she got her cat Nala as her fifth birthday gift from brother Pete. She had best friends along the way, too numerous to name — a big part of life for Addy, right from the start.
She loved her brother (and he, her) and her cousins were also very much part of our household in those days. Elena, Jessy and Philip came to the house a lot after school. She was for years my constant companion until her friends became the focus, even doing lots of volunteer work with mommy during our St.Philomena, Drug Task-force and Safety Committee years. My best summer (with lots of Addy-time came after I left FGI and scrapped daycare for a glorious summer of us girls going to the library every single day to keep us in books, lounging and reading the afternoons away… swimming at the pool, reading up a storm and sharing time together.
Life got busy, crazy busy mostly, with struggles (difficult at times) — but the love never falters. It brings happy pain to my heart — love so strong that it hurts sometimes; hard to explain, really. That’s how I try to think of God’s unconditional love for me — without the human failures and disappointments. My only regrets in this world are the hurts I’ve caused my children, family, and God.
Adelaide Mary always loved to read and still does, loved being a Girl Scout with mother (me) trying to control our troop and selling thousands of cookies. She was a a good mom to her dolls, loved riding bikes, arts and crafts, her pets, and had the best birthday parties — and the coolest bedrooms for entertaining (orange hammock room was tied with vaulted princess castle room for first place). Addy envisioned a world “where everything was plaid and nothing matched”, painted dachshunds everywhere (literally :/), had a talent for twirling wildly in play dresses, cuddling with Nana on the couch (two peas in a pod, both silent with their noses in books) — and telling me about her day.
At school, Addy was a force to be reckoned with — shy mostly. She has always loved Audrey Hepburn and Elizabeth Taylor (she could be a mix of the two) and even sang a Hello Dolly show tune in a talent contest in third grade . At nine, she took tennis lessons, played baseball and soccer before that, and was later quite content when she got her car and a job at Elmo’s Diner!
Her decision to study art makes sense, as she is gifted with an eye for design. Oh, I forgot to add that she has a knack for accessorizing — from age one when she could spot jewelry on women and gently check each piece without breaking or pulling — and when she writes about what she knows well, the WORLD reads it! She has a knack for marketing and social media!
Overall, Adelaide Mary Dever conducts herself with an honest, creative, intelligent, wild streak — and a sparkle (in her eyes) — and to this day, she is the person that you are glad to have on your side. She is a very special woman. I hope she has a baby to share with this world someday, as it will also be amazing!
Her creativity and independence takes many forms… Art is her passion, music, fashion, tattoos and piercings, and her non-conformist heroism with people and ideas. I am very proud of who she has become. She has so many friends and is good to all of them — as have they always been with/to her — sometimes replacing “mother” when I was distant (bodily and emotionally during my sinful early forties; any issue she takes with me is deserved, lets put it that way). She is a caretaker to her friends, as are they.
Having just graduated from college last May, Adele (as her peers call her) has become serious and ready for a career to begin. She left her current job (today actually – yikes) to get on a better path… Bravely. She designed my logo — for one thing — so wherever she lands, she will be surrounded by blessed people.
Happy birthday darling daughter. May her twenty fifth year be blessed and healthy, full of love, and more frequent Mom visits this year! Here’s to many shared adventures in our future!