When Patti Langdon's doorbell rang Monday afternoon, the Tacoma woman expected a UPS delivery.
Instead, she got the son she gave up for adoption 43 years ago.
Langdon, 65, and Todd Smith, 43, of Lacey were reunited after he tracked down his birth mother through a classified ad she placed in The News Tribune on April 19.
"I've been looking for him for more than 30 years," Langdon said Monday evening. "I'm afraid that if I go to sleep, I'll wake up and find that it was all a dream."
"It was completely luck of the draw," added Smith, who said the reunion resulted from him acting on a whim.
Curious about how many people were born at Tacoma General Hospital the same day he was, Smith did a basic Internet search on Saturday. He found the two-month old ad in the paper, addressed to "Baby Boy Langdon."
For as long as she can remember, Langdon has placed the same ad in the paper every year on her son's birthday, only changing the age.
With a copy of the ad in hand, Smith and his wife Tracey drove to Langdon's apartment on Mildred Street Monday and knocked on the door, unannounced.
"I had no image in mind of what my birth mother looked like," said Smith, who was raised in Winlock by his adoptive parents. "I never did any of that business because you run the risk of being disappointed... I was more worried about her being disappointed with me."
A tall, blonde woman with blue eyes walked out the door. Mother and son immediately saw the family resemblance. They hugged. She smelled like gardenias.
"I just squeezed him tight," Langdon said. "I didn't want to let go of him."
Read more of this story at TheNewsTribune.com