A poor boy decided to share his umbrella with an old lady after getting caught in the rain, walking with her toward her house. A couple of days later, he and his mom were surprised to see an envelope tucked into the umbrella when they opened it again.
Tom was a 15-year-old boy raised by a single mother named Marissa. They didn’t have much in life, living daily with just enough to eat three meals and pay the bills.
Every day, his mother worked as a cleaner at a nearby park. She never took public transportation, choosing to walk to work and back home instead to save money.
One day, Tom noticed that Marissa came home soaking wet. “Mom! You’re going to get sick. Why did you walk in the rain?” he worriedly asked.
“I’m alright, sweetheart. My umbrella broke because the wind was so strong, and I wanted to get home in time to have dinner with you,” she replied. “I’ll just take a shower and prepare your dinner, alright?”
Tom knew when his mom wasn’t feeling well, and he instantly knew that she was on the brink of getting sick. He wanted to ensure that his mom worked comfortably every day, so he wanted to get her a helpful present for her upcoming birthday.
Without Marissa knowing, Tom had been saving up his allowance for months to be able to buy her a present. He had collected a total of $25, which he hoped was enough to buy his mom a good gift.
True enough, the following day, Marissa woke up with a fever. “Mom, don’t get up from bed,” Tom told her. “I’ll take care of you today. Here are your medicines. Please take them,” he said, handing them to her with a glass of water.
After Marissa took the medicines, Tom told her that he’d be right back, as he had some things he needed to buy. “Get some sleep, mom. I’ll be there when you wake up,” he said, kissing her on the cheek.
Tom walked to the nearby superstore to purchase ingredients to cook his mom a hot bowl of soup. Then, realizing that his mom’s birthday was in a couple of days, he planned on going to the section that sold umbrellas.
When he got to the store, Tom prioritized getting his mom’s present so he could use the remainder of his money on food. He approached a salesperson in the umbrella section and decided to ask him a question.
“What is your sturdiest umbrella here, sir?” he asked. “Something that doesn’t break when hit by the wind and something that would last years.”
“Oh, we have some new arrivals. They’re quite pricey, but they’re built to last longer, made with thicker material and sturdier metal,” the man explained. He showed Tom some portable umbrellas in different colors, and Tom was particularly impressed.
“They do look sturdy,” he said, taking a lavender-colored umbrella from the rack. “This is my mom’s favorite color. I’m sure she’d love this.” Tom flipped the tag and checked the price. It was $22, which left him with about three dollars to buy food.
He walked through the superstore with the lavender umbrella in hand and checked the dry goods rack. He found a can of chicken noodle soup for only a dollar and was relieved he could still buy his mom some food.
After checking out, Tom couldn’t help but smile after being able to fit his $25 to buy everything he needed to get for his mom. He even had two dollars to spare!
While Tom was walking back home from the store, it suddenly started to pour. He ran towards a nearby bus stop, where he decided to seek shelter. From there, he noticed an old lady walking slowly while everyone around her ran towards shaded areas.
Tom realized the woman had no plans of stopping despite being drenched in the rain. “Why isn’t she stopping?” he asked himself. Without hesitation, he took the umbrella out of his paper bag and decided to chase after the old woman.
“You shouldn’t be walking in the rain, ma’am. You might get sick. My name is Tom; let me walk you home,” he offered. The old woman was surprised to feel that the rain had stopped suddenly. She looked up and realized that an umbrella was shielding her from it.
“Thank you, young man. I appreciate you helping me out. My name is Elizabeth,” she said, linking a hand on Tom’s arm while he guided her while walking. “Good for you. You were able to buy an umbrella before the rain started pouring,” she commented.
Tom shook his head. “This was meant to be a gift for my mom. Her umbrella broke, and she got drenched in the rain yesterday and is now nursing a fever. I wanted to get her something she could use for years.”
“I’m so sorry, dear,” Elizabeth apologized. “Did you use the gift just because of me? You shouldn’t have,” she said, slowly starting to stop walking.
“It’s alright, ma’am. At least I was able to test it out. The salesperson was right, this is a lot sturdier than the normal umbrellas we see nowadays,” Tom smiled at her, trying to make her feel better.
“That’s great. Your mom is lucky to have such a kind and caring boy like you,” Elizabeth commended.
“I’m lucky to have such a hardworking mom like her. She raised me on her own. The least I could do was give her a present, so that’s what I did. I saved up for months,” Tom explained.
After a couple of minutes, they arrived at Elizabeth’s house. She insisted that Tom stay a while until the hard rain stopped.
While they were inside, Elizabeth handed Tom some hot tea. “This is delicious. Thank you, ma’am,” Tom smiled, and the two drank from their cups until the rain stopped.
“Let me help you wrap the gift for your mom,” Elizabeth said, taking the umbrella from the paper bag. She went to her room and wiped the umbrella dry before wrapping it in a lovely floral-print wrapper.
“Here you go, dear. I hope your mom likes her present,” she said, handing Tom the gift. Tom couldn’t help but smile upon seeing the gift wrapped.
“She will love it. Thank you, ma’am!” he said, hugging Elizabeth before leaving.
Tom went home that day, excited for his mom’s birthday to come in a few days. He prepared a hot bowl of soup and nursed her until she got better.
After three days, Tom excitedly woke up to give his mom the gift. “Happy birthday, mom!” he said, hurriedly handing it to her. “I hope you like it!”
“Thank you, sweetheart. You didn’t need to get me anything,” Marissa said, touched at her son’s effort. She opened the gift and was surprised to see the umbrella and an envelope inside.
“What’s inside here?” she curiously asked. Tom’s eyes widened, realizing that Elizabeth had placed something inside the gift box without him knowing. When they opened it, it had $3000 in cash and a note that said:
“Happy birthday! I hope you have a wonderful celebration with your son. Thank you for raising such a kind and lovely boy.”