Daughter tries to explain to parents why the Mars Rover brings her to tears: ‘He’s a robot, why are you crying?’

A mom’s TikTok is going viral for sharing the heartwarming and unintentionally hilarious moment she had with her daughter while talking about the Mars Opportunity Rover. (And fair warning: It might make you choke up a little, too.)

“OK my daughter is home for college spring break and these are the moments that I just love,” wrote Tanya (@tsrlvnv) in her post caption. “She’s crying over the curiosity rover that is on Mars.”

Tanya, who calls her daughter Sofia a “sensitive soul,” started filming the conversation midway through when it was becoming clear that her daughter was getting emotional.

“And he talks, and you can watch videos of him on the moon,” the daughter says, trying to keep her composure.

“But he’s a robot, why are you crying?” Tanya asks.


OK my daughter is home for college spring break and these are the moments that I just love. She’s crying over the curiosity rover that is on Mars Mars. She has a sensitive soul. #SoSad #CuriosityRover #Abondoned #Mars #Space #AmazingDaughter #Crying #SensitiveSoul #Adorable #FYP

♬ original sound – Tanya

“Well see, every year that he was up there, he would sing ‘Happy Birthday’ to himself and he would sing — he would play the song,” Sofia explains, breaking down in tears. “And then the storm happened and he said something so sad and it’s awful.”

“It’s a robot, though,” the girl’s father says somewhere off-camera.

“No, but he was up there for like years!” she tells him before realizing that the rover was actually on Mars and not the moon after all.

Moments later, she plays a short video for her parents that explains how the Mars Rover first began its mission to Mars over a decade ago and began playing the song “Happy Birthday” every year after that to mark each milestone.

Hearing the song in the video, Sofia breaks down again in tears.

“You are legitimately crying!” her mother says while laughing.

But moments later, Tanya starts to see some of where this emotion is coming from when her daughter reads aloud the Mars Rover’s final words before “dying” in 2019 when a dust storm hit Mars, and NASA lost all communication with the device.

“‘My battery is low and it’s getting dark,'” Sofia reads aloud. “That’s what his last words were.”

In the comments, a lot of people had compassion for the young woman’s emotions.

“Honestly just the immense amount of empathy she has over the mars rover brings me to tears,” one person wrote.

“If the Mars Rover doesn’t make you sad, we can’t vibe together,” said someone else.

Multiple others admitted that they also cried when the Mars Rover said his last words. The story of the little six-wheeled robot has touched many people over the years.

“I watched that Mars Rover doc with my family and we were all balling,” one commenter said.

Often confused for the Curiosity Rover, the Opportunity was launched nearly 20 years ago in 2004, according to NPR. Though the original mission was only supposed to last about 90 days, he stayed for another 14 years.

Despite his “death” in 2019, the Opportunity proved immensely useful during his time on the red planet. While covering more than 25 miles, the robot produced thousands of pictures for NASA and is said to have changed how scientists think about Mars.

As it turns out, Sofia is far from alone in her feelings about the Opportunity. According to Jessica Evans, social media specialist at NASA Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, MD, Gen Z has become particularly fascinated by missions to space.

“Space exploration and the space sciences hold the promise of answers to so many of our favorite questions,” Evans told In The Know by Yahoo. “Of course, peering back into the universe with telescopes like Webb, Hubble and eventually Roman helps us answer the question of how life began and where it may be going. But as we look into space, we also get to ask and answer questions that are even more personal — like, ‘Are there new frontiers out there that I can help explore? Are there important discoveries that I can help make? Can I help carry humanity forward by doing work that really matters for us today and tomorrow?'”

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