A Secret Life of Mom Highlight Story: Sometimes there are tales that are just too good, too beautiful, or too unbelievable to keep locked away. That’s why we scour the archives and bring some of them back to enjoy again. They may make you smile or shed a tear, but they’re always meant to add a little positivity to your day. Enjoy!
A determined father searched for his daughter for two years after his ex-girlfriend took her and disappeared. Finally, Bryan Thouvenel of Oregon found five-year-old Harmony and his ex in a Washington state homeless shelter. Thouvenel now has full custody of Harmony and the two are inseparable. And in 2016, they were able to make up for lost memories in a trip to Hawaii, thanks to the nonprofit, Time To Put Kids First. This organization promotes parent-child bonding.
“For two years she didn’t have any memories with me so they decided it would be a nice idea to send us over to Hawaii for a retreat,” Thouvenel said. “It would be this huge memory that she would actually remember. Regardless of whatever happens in the future, she will always have this one memory with dad.” 
Searching for Harmony
Thouvenel met his ex at a karaoke bar in 2010, where he sang her The Beatles’ “The Long and Winding Road”. They dated for two years, during which Harmony Rain was born. (Her middle name was also inspired by a Beatles song.) After they broke up, she took Harmony to Washington state without telling Thouvenel. He had no idea where they went and searched aimlessly for years. In 2014, he wrote a song for Harmony, expressing how much he missed her.
But in 2015, he filed for and won custody of Harmony in Oregon. Three months later, during dinner with his mother, Thouvenel received a phone call from a friend who spotted Harmony at the Salvation Army in Spokane, Washington. Thouvenel and his mom, Cindy Lorenz, immediately drove from Oregon.
“She’s not in the best of health in the world, you know, but she drove for 10 hours straight until we got up there to the courthouse,” Thouvenel said.
In Spokane, Thouvenel filed for custody in that state and won it. Then they brought Harmony and her mother to the courthouse where the judge put the little girl under her father’s care. After the ruling, a police officer told him to wait outside the courtroom. “I sat there and the next thing you know I’ve got my daughter coming out, walking by herself. She’s kind of looking around, and I said her name once. She kind of looked at me funny and I said ‘Harmony, it’s daddy.’ Her eyes just kind of lit up.”
Then he showed her old pictures of them together to spark her memory and she hugged him. “Those memories, for me, they’re painted on my heart,” Thouvenel said. “To find out they weren’t painted on hers—it was devastating.”
Read: 13-Year-Old is Forced to Give Up Her Baby Daughter, Reunites with Her 82 Years Later
Reunited with Harmony
When he called his eldest daughter to tell her the good news, she didn’t believe her little sister was coming home, telling him to stop joking. “It made it all worth it, you know?” he said. “It was two years I fought through hell just to be a part of my daughter’s life and she was back in my life.” 
After his experiences, Thouvenel became involved in organizations to help other fathers like him, like The Pacific Northwest Father’s Rights Movement, which is how he found the nonprofit Time To Put Kids First.