A woman in east-central China posed as a “groom” to give her widowed mom the wedding photos she never had.
The woman, identified as Ma Er, took her 63-year-old mother, Chen Zhaolian, to a photo studio to realize her dreams in late September.
Ma Er said that her father, who died in 1997, failed to provide her mother with a wedding picture, Shiyan Evening News reported.
It turns out that it was a luxury for many living in China’s impoverished Hubei province at the time.
Since her husband’s death, Chen, who also happens to be illiterate, raised Ma Er and her older brother by working as a street cleaner.
While Ma Er, now 28, repeatedly insisted on her to stop working, Chen decided to continue cleaning streets and even took a second part-time job as a canteen staff member.
“Now I am grown up; I can take of this task,” the South China Morning Post quoted Ma Er as saying. “My mother has worked very hard to raise us.”
“Every woman wants to wear a beautiful wedding dress. My mother simply never had the chance. So I decided to make it happen for her. I’ve wanted to do this for years.”
At the studio, Chen wore a white wedding dress topped by an elegant tiara. Ma Er, as the “groom,” dressed up in a beige men’s suit.
Chen, who wore makeup for the very first time, burst into tears when her daughter handed her a bouquet of flowers.
Ma Er, who graduated from her dream university, said that her mother struggled, especially after her father’s death.
Chen often cried late at night, and to make matters worse, received humiliation from pedestrians while working on the streets.
“I didn’t know much about the society at that time and I was just frightened,” Ma Er said. “My brother and I didn’t understand how difficult a situation my mother was in. I realized when I grew up.”
Still, the selfless mother tried to give her children the best she could afford.
“When we were young, no matter how poor we were, my mother would buy new clothes for me and my brother to celebrate the Spring Festival. But she didn’t buy herself anything, even a pair of socks.”
Their pictures, which Ma Er initially shared on TikTok, have since touched the hearts of thousands across the internet.
“This daughter is so good.”
“I am moved by this maternal love and filial piety.”
“After so many experiences, this is just so beautiful.”
“I also owe my mom a set of photos.”