Have you ever tried to put yourself in an imaginary situation that you had no one in the whole world? Could you imagine your life without your beloved family, separated from your brothers, sisters or parents? How horrible would be living without knowledge that somewhere there was a person whom you shared the same blood with? Imagine for the second that there was someone who shared the same flesh, the same thought, and the same ancestors with you. Could you live with the fact that you were separated for decades because of terrible circumstances?
I couldn't even imagine how I would feel. But, I read about many cases where people finally found each other after decades, sometimes after the whole life. In particularly sad cases, they missed each other in this life, but their children discovered those who they could have loved the most.
Could you even imagine?
Could you imagine being Ann Hunt, the woman adopted and sent to the UK? Or being her sister Elizabeth Hamel, the USA citizen? They are twin sisters who have reunited after 78 years they spent apart! It is probably the worst confirmed Guinness World Records ever!
Could you imagine how human heart survived a moment when two South Korean sisters Meagan Hughes and Holly Hoyle O'Brien, both inhabitants of USA after they adopted by American families, found each other? And found out that both of them worked on the same floor at the same hospital in Florida! And didn't know they even had a sister!
Could you imagine the real story which was even more unexpected and inexplicable? Well, I want to tell you one of these stories that shook me to the depths of my soul. It is the tale that only life can organize. Don’t cry! Fortunately, this is a story with the very, very happy end. Although, in real terms, there is not much luck in lives of people whose story is more turbulent than any Hollywood movie.
Life beyond the Hollywood movie
Fifty-one-year-old Frances Simpson barely remembered her father. There was no information if her father was dead or alive. What she only prayed for was that he still loved her after almost half a century since they hugged for the last time.
She last saw him when she was an only three-years-old girl. After her parents separated, the father left his little girl because of such unfortunate circumstances. But, Frances could not forget about her beloved daddy and spent long thirty-three years of her life trying to find him. And, after all these years, miracle waited for her. Her friend decided to make research on her family tree as a surprise. He found Frances's father Tony Macnauton and discovered that he had got one more daughter, a beautiful girl called Kim. Frances unexpectedly realized that somewhere in the world lived her half-sister she never knew about.
Her half-sister's name was Kimberley Macnauton. Immediately after this discovery, Frances looked for Kim up on Facebook. The message she sent was short, full of fear and the hope for the future. If you think about the entire situation better, there is no adequate way for this kind of news to be announced naturally. Therefore she simply wrote: 'This is going to be a bit of a shock. If you are who I think you are, I think I might be your sister'.
Miracles are possible – go for them
Thanks to incredible coincidence, Tony Macnauton, the father of both sisters was sitting by Kim's side when she got the strange, unexpected message. Kimberley called Kim was stunned! She wrote the answer back immediately and confirmed that they were indeed related.
Sisters exchanged phone numbers, and Frances heard her sister's voice for the first time in their lives. She was shaken, excited, and with the muted emotions. She has spoken to her father for the first time since she was three years old! No one could imagine what was in her soul and what thoughts and emotions overwhelmed her. I can't even think about it. If I were in her shoes, I would die immediately!
They deserved an emotional reunion
They organized a surprise reunion in Dorset where Frances's father Tony has been living for years. The entire situation was unbelievable. His elder daughter was entirely over the moon. She was left breathless and could not find the words to describe how she felt when she saw her father eyes after more than 48 years. In the other hand, all the father's dreams came true, thanks to a 21st-century miracle called social networking site Facebook!
The father and his elder child spoke to each other for the first time on January 16, 2010. They couldn’t put feelings into words, and they were unable to describe how they felt at that moment reunited almost a half of a century after they had seen each other for the last time.
Tony was shocked after the first talk, but he said that his younger daughter Kim knew she had a long-lost half-sister. Imagine that shaky moment while he was sitting right next to Kim wondering if his first daughter Frances wanted to talk to him at all. After just a minute, the pair was really chatting on the phone for the first time in both lives! The father and his daughter, for who he had believed that he would never see again, eventually exchanged their first words. What a story!
When the past encounters the future
This unbelievable story started a long time ago when the Tony Macnauton's relationship with Frances' mother began to be strained until they finally decided that their marriage did not work anymore. Tony immensely wanted to take his daughter with him, but his ex-wife and her family would not allow it.
Everything was happening in the mid-20th century when the fathers were not the ones who could keep the children, especially girls. It was a reason why he just left without her. But, he talked to his younger daughter about her sister and kept memories of her deep down in the secret part of his heart. This part of the heart is only known to those who have survived great suffering in their lives. These people usually reserve a small corner there for those they love the most, but who are far away from them.
It turned out that he changed his name for a great reason. None of his intentions were to escape from Frances, of course. But, distance and life separated them for the long, long time. Sadly, it lasted too long. During many years, he worked as a lorry driver and spent his life carrying a torn photography of his 16-month-old baby girl close to his heart. This photograph was the only bright memory he had of Frances, and he kept it safe for the almost half a century.
Ironically, Frances had only one ‘black and white’ photograph of her father. The Frances' photograph, Tony kept near his heart for years, was made from the same roll film.
Love is the one that conquers the world
Kim believes that they were so lucky because Frances wanted to find her dad. It was the only way for her to meet her sister and to get a whole new family. She firmly believed that things could have gone wrong if Frances got in contact with one of her sons who did not know who she was. Fortunately, luck touched all of them, and everything happened in the best possible way.
Frances immediately went to Poole to meet her father and see half-sister for the first time. One of the first news Tony heard was that he became a grandfather and even great-grandfather a few years ago.
After an emotional weekend they spent together, all his children and grandchildren organized a surprise reunion very easy and very fast. It was one of these rare opportunities for him to leave Poole and take a journey to Shropshire to meet his extended family. He met his grandchildren Robert (25), Jody (22), Callum (19), Andrew (17), and Kelvin (15), and his great-granddaughter Jessica (2).
After the first shock and days full of surprising and new faces, they stayed in daily contact. Today it seems to them that their ugly past has never existed as if they have always been together and that they have known each other their whole lives.
Honestly, the first thought I had when I saw their common photo was that the father and the daughter stayed in some cloud or perhaps that they flew somewhere no one could follow them. It was absolutely marvelous!
Tears of an old father and the smile of his beloved daughter
Tony was speechless. He said that he could not describe how he felt at that moment. Even though they had lost touch, he had never, ever forgotten his daughter Frances. All in all, the whole story was remarkable. They have each been keeping precious photographs of the two of them together safe, as the only ones which exist. Both of them dreamed of being reunited again, and now they have finally got each other back.
For her part, a full-time mother Frances was thrilled because she's finally got her dad back after all these years. She did not see her beloved father after he had left. When she turned 18, she began searching for him.
She was looking for him everywhere including the phone books pages, all newspapers she could find across the country, even electoral rolls. She persistently tried to track him down, but all her efforts failed because he had changed his name wanting to make a fresh start. Despite her best attempts she never found him even though he was living only 200 miles away from her.
When she started to look for Tony, there was no the Internet, which made her pursuit so much harder. But, after a while, it was possible for her to try to find him on social networking site Facebook. Fortunately, Frances managed to make contact with her half-sister Kim, father’s child from his second marriage. She said that she was sure as soon as she saw Kim's name. After sending a straightforward message and getting sister's message back, all their lives completely changed.
When life blew their head off
Maybe you can imagine her filings when she read the answer: 'Do you want to talk to my dad? He's sitting right next to me'. I can't! It was too emotional, too awesome, too exciting for people who read this story. For Frances, it was a real 'turn around'. The primary goal of her life became true! The quest was completed. They probably started talking, and they haven't stopped since. I can't imagine it could be different!
For me as a writer, the most unbelievable thing was the fact that Frances got a lot of memories of her father even though she was a toddler when he went away. She remembered him making her a swing and playing the accordion laid back in his favorite armchair. Unbelievable!
The time for new memories
Today, they make new memories. They are discovering all things they have in common. They share the same sense of humor and love the same dishes and TV shows. They even visited the same places during their holidays. Unbelievable!
This family has found the new purpose in life. Frances' children are absolutely excited and pleased to be able to gather with their granddad. Mother talked them about her father with love and child excitement, but meeting him was an entirely different story. They were touched and thrilled to know that they have a grandfather like every other child.
All in all, I believe that this family has never thought that their story could become a significant media sensation. The only thing they wanted was to share their joy and to give hope to all these people who lost their loved ones.
They are the real proof that miracles are possible, and that our lives are a miracle for themselves.