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Video: Mother: Reunion with homeless son ‘a dream’

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    >> but we're going to begin this half hour with that tearful reunion between internet sensation ted williams and his mother. we're going to talk to both of them in a moment, but here's amy robach with how it all happened.

    >> reporter: in only a few days ted williams has gone from begging for money on a freeway to widespread fame, numerous job offers and a chance to rebuild his life.

    >> hi, mommy, hi mommy.

    >> reporter: a week ago this reunion would have seemed impossible for ted williams and his mother julia .

    >> this has been a dream, a dream and a prayer, finally a sign that has some kind of validity.

    >> reporter: signs that i have a good given voice, prompting a videoographer to listen.

    >> when you're listening to the best of oldies, you're listening to 98.9.

    >> and then alcohol and drugs and a few other things became a part of my life and i got two years clean. and i'm trying hard to get it back.

    >> reporter: since it was posted on the internet just this monday, the video has been viewed nearly 1 million times.

    >> i see a lot of videos but few of them change people's lives like this one has.

    >> reporter: within a few days, ted williams , 53 years old and homeless found himself back inside a radio station and flooded with numerous offers.

    >> i just didn't know anything like this would have happened.

    >> reporter: the nba's cleveland cavaliers offered him a job.

    >> we love his story and we love his voice and our biggest priority is to get him in here.

    >> reporter: and he signed a recording contract with kraft macaroni and cheese .

    >> cheese with golden brown bread crumbs, you know you love it.

    >> for nbc news, this is they.

    >> reporter: it's a far cry from the run ins with the law that he's trying to move past. this type of turn around he always hoped his 90-year-old mother would live to see.

    >> i used to pray to god, religiously, please let my mom to live another year, maybe this would be the year that somebody would say, hey, do you want a job or anything?

    >> reporter: and on thursday, they got their chance. reuniting after 20 years.

    >> the lord answered my prayers because i was praying that my mother would stay around long enough to see me.

    >> and i'm right here.

    >> reporter: kraft's new macaroni and cheese commercial is scheduled to air sunday. he's al e lots of work ahead for him, meredith.

    >> ted williams is with us again along with his mother julia . along time coming this reunion, ted, talk to me about what you felt yesterday after seeing your mom over 20 years.

    >> i was just gone. i was just out there. i couldn't -- i don't think we talked for a second, we just balled, both of us, and when mommy cries, that's makes me cry. we didn't say anything, we just hugged each other. it was like a dream that finally came true. thank you jesus.

    >> what was going on in your mind, julia , when you saw your son?

    >> it seemed like a dream. i always wished him well. but he would always brush me off, i would say to him, why don't you let god in your life to straighten out your life, you need to straighten out -- good bu bye, that's what i got. so it made me feel very bad from the family that i came from because my husband was jehovah's witne witness.

    >> so for 20 years you have tried to reach out.

    >> it's been ten years, and the only thing i got was promises, i'm going to come and be with you at christmas time . i said how many years have you been say that? just put it in god's hands.

    >> i feet like i had brought so much disgrace to this woman that there wasn't much i could say. because i think i told you yesterday that the one thing she would always ask me on phone calls is, are you working? and i think she would have even fell for the fact that mcdonald's, if they had hired me, she would have been happy with that.

    >> was it shame, ted, is that what it was for you?

    >> i would even talk to her on the phone and i would say, mommy, one day this voice is going to do something. and she would say, oh, you know what, she would say that and when she said that, it felt like she didn't have no faith in anything i wanted to do.

    >> bhowhy did you say that, julia ? because you had heard it before?

    >> i had heard it so many times before, it sounded like a broken record. i said let's not go into that, because all i got was promises.

    >> one of the first things you said during the reunion was don't disappoint me?

    >> don't disappoint me. hold your life together. don't let things fall apart and you fall in with the wrong people. that's the part that upsets me about him. he's a good person and he's easily pulled into things. and straighten your life out, that's the only thing i wanted him to do.

    >> i know when we talked yesterday, ted, for anybody, this attention is -- it's got to be a lot to absorb and to handle and matt and i were saying yesterday, that we worry too, i suppose a lot of people do, that it's a lot coming at you very fast. and you've been down the road before. how do you keep yourself from heading down that road again?

    >> i want to choose one particular situation or, you know, i'm the voice of kraft macaroni and cheese .

    >> as of yesterday, right?

    >> and the cleveland cavaliers is a second choice. with the home and all, everybody's giving me little money deals. but no one's said, here ted, here's a place for you to call your own to cook in. i want one particular situation. i think i could handle it. but all the irons in the fire is so overwhelming, i think i told you about dale atkins, the psychologist here on the staff, i'm going to call her a little more often.

    >> she's an nbc news contributor.

    >> a contributor, yes, i didn't get a chance to call her, but i think i'm going to use her as somewhat of a sponsor or a therapist too.

    >> do you think you're going to need that?

    >> yes.

    >> you looked like you were going to say something, julia .

    >> the sign they called me and told me that he had, i went to bed and i thought, oh, it couldn't be this way.

    >> it's disgraceful.

    >> you mean the sign in the video.

    >> yes, yes, yes.

    >> someone called and told me, mama, ted has a sign. i said what snin they said he's holding up a sign.

    >> it's what the homeless people here in new york do, collecting cans.

    >> i said how can you do something like that? this is my home and all my family is out there, how could you get so low to do a thing like that? and then i just went to bed and through the night i could see him with this sign.

    >> and what did the sign say?

    >> i have a god given talent, i'm an ex-radio announcer who has fallen on hard times , please, any help would be gratefully appreciated.

    >> and yet that sign led him out of the situation.

    >> yes, yes.

    >> it did, julia .

    >> yes, it did.

    >> but to think of my son, my family, looking at all of this, putting up a sign?

    >> so you were in contact all that time with the grandchildren?

    >> yes.

    >> but the grandchildren wouldn't tell me because they didn't want to hurt me. someone else called and i said they don't even allow you to hold up signs in ohio. they said, well, he's doing it.

    >> yesterday we alluded to what i have done to support my drug habits and so forth. that was theft, she didn't seem to feel as bad about the theft as she did me holding a sign on a highway exit .

    >> there's something about it when it's family and embarrassing and all of that together.

    >> it's embarrassing.

    >> but yesterday was a good day, it was a positive day, it was a step forward. and a crazy day too. you had this wonderful reunion, but you spent it here.

    >> i talked to jimmy fallon last night.

    >> you admitted to a little bit of a man crush on mr. lauer. we'll show you, let's put up the tape.

    >> this is what happened last night, mommy. the "today" show is a hot show . and matt lauer , he brings the female out in me. that matt lauer . matt lauer is -- matt lauer is hot. yeah.

    >> me too, me too.

    >> if you want a job on this show, you're sucking up to the wrong person.

    >> i don't know why i said -- i do know why. i just felt like, hey, meeting matt lauer would be the greatest thing that could have happened. i knew i had arrived in new york, meeting you guys.

    >> the greatest thing that could happen is that you get your life on board and you get the help that you need.

    >> i'll keep you guys abreast of what's going on. i don't know how i'll get in contact with you personally to say, hey, meredith.

    >> we'll give you our numbers. when this lady speaks to you, you listen.

    >> i don't disappoint her anymore.

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