USA Today‘s Humankind wing has shared an absolutely incredible video guaranteed to turn your stone cold heart into warm squishy rubble. The clip in question comes from Chicago where a teen girl named Lauren handed cap-sporting Joe a special present during her high school graduation party. Joe, who has been dating Lauren’s mother for 17 years, has served as a de facto dad to the young grad and her gift to him had the stand-up man in tears. Why? Lauren’s gift to Joe was adoption papers.
It’s a remarkably touching story and one that deserves home (yet again) that someone doesn’t have to be biologically related to be a hell of a parent. The video of Joe’s reaction to Lauren’s incredibly heartfelt present is the sort of “chopping onions/getting dusty/third crying excuse” that prompts an undignified sob on the bus or in a doctor’s office waiting room. That’s okay. Cry along, dab them tears, and be glad you were able to watch this awesome moment in action.