Social media is usually rife with sappy love posts from couples on Valentine’s Day expressing their love in a very 21st century way. Yet, one Twitter post had thousands of hearts melting when a husband gave his wife a very special gift: a painted portrait of her and her family. Stephany Macias filmed her dad Edgar gifting his wife Luz Maria the portrait of her family members that she hasn’t seen since leaving Mexico almost two decades ago.
Here’s how Luz Maria reacted when she first saw the gift:
My dads Valentine’s Day gift to my mom, it’s been almost 20 years since my moms been with her whole family and when she came to the states, she never got to see her parents again pic.twitter.com/hru09miJqC
— steph (@stephanyymacias) February 15, 2018
As Stephany mentions in the caption of the video, her mom hasn’t been able to see her siblings and parents for nearly 20 years. Due to Luz Maria’s citizenship status, she hasn’t been able to visit her parents and four siblings who still live in Mexico. Even when her parents passed away a few years ago, Luz Maria was unable to attend their funerals.
Edgar decided to reunite his wife with her family in the most creative and beautiful way possible for Valentine’s Day. Even though Luz Maria hasn’t physically been able to reunite with her family, this painted portrait brought them together and when she saw it she broke down in tears.
Stephany spoke to mitú and recalled, “After I stopped recording my mom cried, I cried and my brother cried.”
“My mom has become an amazing, loving, strong woman because of her separation with her family,” Stephany said. “She had to leave everything behind to give me and my siblings a better life and had to experience losing her parents … She was all alone in a time where you truly need someone, and because of that immense sacrifice, my mom is one of the strongest women I know.”
People across the internet responded with lots of emotion.
Dude I got chills all over my body and I’m crying 😭 i love this ❤️😭
— Brenda Juárez 🇲🇽 (@juarezbrenda24) February 15, 2018
And for many, this moment was very relatable.
Damn this hit hoooome. Im crying harddd this is so beautiful, bless ur dad 💔 my aunt did the same for my mom on her birthday, this is so sweet
— jared, 19, never fucking learned how to read (@njhearteyes) February 16, 2018
“I felt like people were really connecting with the situation [and] my parents,” Stephany said. Unfortunately when it comes to undocumented, immigrant families, family separation is a common issue people face.
Certain moments from the video really struck a chord for some people.
When he said “I’m trying” my heart!!! Lovely family 💖
— Key (@KiaraLaDeesse) February 16, 2018
Stephany mentioned that although her parents have been faced with difficult situations, they’ve taught her and her siblings to “be humble, learn from our mistakes, take care of each other [and] work hard.”
And others looked at this video as an example of how family separation is a huge and common issue amongst many Latino, immigrant families.
the fact that this is a common problem for Latino immigrants is heart wrenching. whole families divided for lifetimes, all in the name of politics + warmongering.
— josie posie (@r1mjob) February 15, 2018
Although her parents had to deal with the issue of family separation, Stephany is grateful to have her parents and siblings by her side.
“My family is very family oriented,” Stephany said. “We try to spend time together as much as possible.”