Mom and daughter meet face-to-face for the first time in 43 years

By Layron Livingston - bio | email

TYLER, TX (KLTV) - The Facebook message on Beth Wilcox's wall captured her nervous reflected her eagerness:  Off to Dallas...LYNN'S COMING!

Wilcox would later come face-to-face with her birth-mother at the bottom of an escalator inside DFW airport.

It would be the first meeting between birth mother and daughter in 43 years.

Wilcox recalled watching her birth-mother come down the escalator, then finally being able to wrap her arms around Lynn Peterson.

"There was this beautiful girl, there waiting for me, with flowers, who looks like me, who looks like my family, who is my family," said Peterson.  Lynn flew in from Oregon to meet her daughter for the first time.

The two spent the day catching up.

"We're both left-handed; we're both 5'4"; we both have blue eyes; her hair was originally brown," said Wilcox, laughing.

Wilcox was just a few days old when Peterson decided to give her up for adoption. Peterson was 19 years old.

"There was a family already, there was an older brother and there were people that wanted a child, immediately."

But Peterson said she started looking for her little girl decades ago.  She would eventually hire a search company which was able to provide her with Wilcox's address.

It was just more than four years ago when Wilcox said she received a letter in the mail from a Lynn Peterson.

"It said, 'I think I'm your mom.'"

Wilcox wrote back, and they continued to write letters for nearly five years.  The two kept tabs on one another's lives, via Facebook, but they never spoke on the phone.

"You have these fantasies, and you build them up in your head, and until that dissipated, I didn't want to be disappointed, and I didn't want her to be disappointed," said Wilcox.

Earlier this year, they agreed Peterson should make a trip to East Texas for a spring meeting.

"I wanted, most earnestly, to know that you were loved," Peterson said to her daughter.

Beth was the second child adopted by her parents, and said she never resented her birth-mother for giving her up.

"My [adoptive] mother's approach was, we were loved twice," said Wilcox.  "We were loved enough to be given away, and loved enough to be kept."

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