An Alabama mom’s graduation gift for her daughter has the internet in tears.
Erin Percy recently shared a video on TikTok showing a basket filled with presents for her 18-year-old daughter, Abby Rose. Each carefully wrapped package has a handwritten note attached.
“Open me when it’s cold outside,” the first note reads, as "Married Life," a heartbreakingly beautiful score from Pixar's animated film "Up" plays in the background. Other messages include, “Open me when you don’t have the time to do laundry,” “Open me before midterms,” “Open me when you need a little jolt.”
“I wanted to give her a few things for those important moments that I'm going to miss,” Percy tells TODAY.com. The pediatric nurse practitioner adds that she is also a stage 3 breast cancer survivor.
“Abby Rose was my biggest cheerleader when I was sick from surgery, chemo and radiation,” Percy reveals. “Even though I’m seven years in remission, I worry, 'What if I can’t be there for her?' Subconsciously, I think that had something to do with the gifts as well.”
Abby Rose, 18, will be attending the College of Charleston in South Carolina, which is nine hours away from home in Alabama.
“We’re really, really close,” Percy says, noting that Abby Rose has been competing in dance competitions for more than 10 year.
"I'm going to miss driving together to all the competitions," Percy says, her voice cracking with emotion. "But I'm so excited for this next chapter. She had a hard high school experience because of Covid — and I just want her to have an awesome, normal, college experience."
Percy, who has been inundated with comments from people wanting to know what’s inside each box, gladly shares the details with TODAY.com:
Open Me When...
Open me when it’s cold outside: A cozy sweatsuit.
Open me when you catch a cold: Honey, teas, cough drops and Vicks VapoRub.
Open me when you need a little me time: Spa day goodies, including face masks. “We spend way too much time at Ulta,” Percy says.
Open me when you need to break the ice with new people: Party games for Abby Rose to play with her roommates.
Open me when you don’t have time to do the laundry: A week’s worth of socks and underwear!
Open me any day but Sunday: Chick-Fil-A gift card.
Open me before midterms: A gift card for Insomnia cookies, which offers delivery until 3 a.m.
Open me when you need a little jolt: Starbucks gift card.
Open me when you get your first A: An “A” pendant.
Open me when we say goodbye: “When she was little I used to sing her the song 'You are my Sunshine,'" Percy says. “So I got her a sun necklace — and we each get one half. I’m already wearing mine.”