In each of us there is a small still voice that, if we listen carefully, connects us to a higher power. Sometimes this voice gives us guidance in day-to-day personal or family issues. In others, it provides motivation to do ‘the right thing’ for others, either in service or deed.

In the search and reunion community, I’ve noticed that many of us seem to use our god given talent and inspiration, as well as guided divine intervention to help families connect in extraordinarily difficult circumstances. We have learned to listen to that still small voice.

This Monday my phone rang in the office. The gentleman on the line, Kenny Anderson, apologized for interrupting my day, but explained that he had read an article in the Anchorage newspaper about a wonderful reunion that I was fortunate to have been instrumentally involved in, and was prompted to track me down and ask for my assistance, not for himself, but for his wife, Pam.

Ken went on to explain that he was a reunited adoptee who had gone through his own search and reunion 30 years ago. However his wife, a birth mother to a daughter born in Wisconsin in 1976, was still longing for a connection with the daughter she was forced to relinquish by her parents when she was 19 years old. Ken told me that when contemplating their move to Alaska, Pam had been hesitant to move from Wisconsin because she feared that if her daughter ever looked for her, Alaska would be the last place she would look.

As we went over the city, state and date of birth of Pam’s daughter, and the steps they had taken so far to find her, a small still voice clearly said to me…. look on the registry. It was such a strong, do it now, message that I said to Ken, “Let me check something, and I’ll call you back later today. I want to see if she has ever looked for Pam.”

As soon as the call ended, I immediately went to the registry web site and typed in the daughter’s date of birth. 3 entries appeared, but only one listed ‘Milwaukee area’ as a city of birth and the first name of the poster, Renee. There was no valid contact number, and no e-mail address listed on the post. Again I turned to another site, typed in Renee, her date of birth and Wisconsin for the state. There was only one person in the entire state that matched the information. I found a phone number for Renee and called.

A young woman hoarsely answered the phone. I introduced myself, told Renee I was ‘not’ a telemarketer, and then asked, “Renee, did you ever post information on your adoption on a web site on the net?” She said yes, a long time ago. I then asked, “Can you confirm your city of birth?” She answered, “Cudahay”, which was the exact small city in Wisconsin in which Pam had delivered her daughter. I then asked if she knew ‘anything’ else about her birth mother. Renee told me that all she knew was that her birth mother was 19 or 20, had wanted to keep her, but her parents made her give up her baby.

Of course, chills ran up my arms and the hair on the back of my neck stood up, always a good, personal indication that something had ‘clicked’ correctly.

I explained to Renee that a Mr. Anderson had called me a few minutes ago, in search of his wife’s birth daughter, and so far all indications were that they were looking for her. I then asked for permission to give her telephone number to Ken, which she quickly gave.

I took a moment to collect my thoughts, write my notes, and then I called Ken. The conversation started this way. “Ken, do you believe in Miracles?” Ken replied, “You must be a Christian woman.” I asked him to grab a pen and a paper. He said, “You have got to be kidding me. You couldn’t have found her so fast.” I gave Ken Renee’s telephone number and relayed the exact process used to find her ‘including’ the prompting from a divine source. I could hear the quiver of suppressed emotion in his voice as he thought about how to tell Pam. Ken asked, “How can we ever pay you back for what you have done today? I replied, “Ken, pay it forward. When Pam and Renee meet, tell YOUR story to the Anchorage newspaper that promoted you to call me in the first place so that someone ‘else’ finds hope.”

I asked for his e-mail address so I could follow the coming events, and hung up so he could call Pam.

The next morning I sent Ken a one liner e-mail, header Reunion? Insert - “Inquiring minds want to know, WHAT happened?

Ken replied:

Susan...I now believe in miracles! Everything went as well as could be expected for the first day. My wife (Pam) talked to her daughter for over 2 hours last night. There was the anticipated apprehension on both sides, but I'm sure that will subside in future visits. Overall, we are stunned at the speed at which everything happened and thank you from the bottom of our hearts. Having been through this scenario myself 30 years ago I know what a mind-boggling experience this whole thing can be.

The daughter’s husband apparently is a little leery of the whole thing, but in time, I think he will relax. Overall we couldn't be more thrilled. My wife will be calling you to thank you as well. I will update you when things hopefully progress to the actual meeting stage, and we have a "completed story" Hopefully with a happy ending. In only one hour you became a life changing individual in our lives. God Bless you and the gift you have to replace emptiness with love and fulfillment in peoples’ lives. We'll keep in touch, sincere thanks, Ken Anderson

I suppose I should write a closing to this story, but in all honesty, Ken’s reply is just the beginning for their family as they reunite, and is once again confirmation for me that when God whispers instructions, we’d all be wise to listen.

Susan E. Friel-Williams