Determined to stay focused, Steed proceeded with her quest and was finally introduced to a heritage researcher in Dublin who pointed her in the right direction.
“This guy was amazing. He was able to fax me my actual birth certificate within 24 hours,” said Steed, adding how emotional it was to see it.
From there Steed become involved with the Adopted People’s Association in Dublin (now Adoption Ireland), which lead her on a journey of self-discovery.
Finally through an Irish contact living in England, Steed was able to locate her mother through her marriage certificate to Swindon in England.
Within a matter of days Steed was reunited, via telephone, with her birth mother after 41 years.
Steed recalls the phone conversation so well.
“It was right after 9/11 and I was due to go up to New York that morning when the phone rang. It was Judy, my friend in England, who called to say she had found my mother,” recalls Steed.
“I was a wreck. I didn’t know what to think or do. Finally I called my mother and it was the oddest thing,” she said with a broad smile on her face.
“The minute I heard her voice the nerves melted away. It was like we just spoke last week and we hadn’t in 41 years.
“I told her I still had the doll she made for me. She couldn’t believe it. It was extremely emotional as you would expect.”
A year later Steed went to visit her mother in England, and since then they have maintained a great relationship.
“I couldn’t believe how alike we were both in personality and physically. It really was unbelievable,” she said.
“We talk at least once a week now,” she said.
Josephine has promised to help Steed right the wrong that was done to her as a child in Cork.