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Reunited after 7 Long Years

By Robert Guevara


It had been an astonishing 7 years since Danny had last seen his longtime girlfriend, Pearl. The revelation emerged during his person-centered ISP partnership meeting, leaving everyone, myself included, astounded by the passage of time. “Yes, 7 years since I’ve seen my sweetie,” Danny casually shared, prompting disbelief and admiration among us. This striking fact was made all the more remarkable given that Danny and Pearl engaged in twice-daily phone conversations, an unwavering connection that had persisted throughout the years.


Recall the autumn of 2022, when our person-centered partnership meetings were in full swing. Amidst the engaging activities and enlightening discussions, a unique trend began to take root – the emergence of dreams. Identifying one’s dreams can prove elusive, yet within an environment of unwavering support and affection, empowerment flourishes. One individual, Danny Allison, exemplified this phenomenon. During our session, Danny divulged that he hadn’t physically been in Pearl’s presence for 7 years, despite their shared life and a son together. Geographical separation resulting from health and financial constraints had persisted – Pearl necessitated medical care near her family, while Danny received CDC housing support in Ukiah. Despite the physical divide, their emotional and spiritual connection remained resolute, with Danny and Pearl engaging in their daily ritual of twice-daily phone calls.

Upon learning of Danny’s extended separation from Pearl, a question arose within me: Did he wish to visit her? Notably, Orville, her residence, was not far from Ukiah. Danny’s reply was laced with a sense of resignation, given his perceived inability to finance such a journey. This was the catalyst that fueled a collaborative initiative among everyone present in the partnership meeting, crafting a rudimentary strategy to make this dream a reality. Danny’s LG3, Daniel, immediately volunteered to stay with Danny in Orville if he was able to make the trip.  I outlined how Danny could save money each month, and be able to afford a hotel stay, gas money, and spending money to visit Pearl. Danny, though joyously overwhelmed, tentatively committed to pursuing this opportunity, a concept he previously deemed implausible.


Fast-forward to January 2023, where Danny’s exuberance was palpable as he entered the Ukiah office, ready to share his triumph. His diligence had yielded sufficient funds to materialize his long-harbored desire to visit Pearl. Reservations were confirmed, bags packed, with only the most challenging part remaining – the anticipatory wait. With an infectious enthusiasm, Danny announced to Mone, Ana, Joe, Michele, and myself that the funds were secured, preparations complete, and yet another revelation awaited. Not only would he reunite with Pearl, but his son, separated from him for an equal span of 7 years, would also be present. The emotions that welled up within us were nearly overwhelming.

Danny’s journey to reunite with Pearl and his son was a resounding success. They shared heartwarming moments and even dined together, reminiscent of times long past. Renewed by this experience, Danny’s heart brimmed with hope, his eyes opened to the realm of possibilities that lay before him. Already, he is contemplating a second trip, this time for Christmas. What was once perceived as insurmountable has now become routine, underscoring the profound power of nurturing even the smallest seeds of dreams.


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