There's no pain on Earth greater than losing one of your children, because it's a hurt that never really goes away.
Jacqui Saldana learned that when she lost her 3-year-old son, Ryan, in a tragic accident.
Her little boy was killed while playing frisbee in front of her home when he was struck and killed by a passing truck.
The painful event left a hole in Saldana and her husband Dan's lives.
But if anyone knows how to lift a person's spirits, it's talk show host Ellen DeGeneres.
Baby Boy Bakery
Losing Ryan was especially hard for the Saldanas because Jacqui had been recording all of her precious moments with him on her blog, Baby Boy Bakery.
She had shared happy memories of the family doing simple things like trick-or-treating and getting coffee at Starbucks.
After Ryan's death, she filled her blog with a different kind of posts, writing about her daily struggles in the wake of the family's tragedy.
Saldana's writing connected with a lot of parents, and soon they were sending letters to The Ellen Show sharing her heartbreaking story.
But it was actually a chance encounter that lead Jacqui to a special meeting with Ellen.
A chance encounter
Saldana and her husband made time to watch Ellen every day, especially after losing Ryan.
As we all know, dancing along with Ellen and watching her hilarious segments is the best way to break up a foul mood.
Jacqui had seen so many episodes that she actually recognized one of the show's head writers, Kevin, at Crate and Barrel a few months after Ryan's death.
She thanked him for his work on the show that meant so much to her family, and shared Ryan's story with him.
She didn't realize it at the time, but the meeting would lead to a special surprise later that year.
A Christmas surprise
As the the holiday season had rolled around, the Saldanas were invited to a live taping of The Ellen Show.
They laughed and danced through the show, until DeGeneres announced, "There is someone in our audience who we invited to our show, because she's going through a very tough time, and I want to meet her."
As Jacqui joined the host on stage they were both already holding back tears.
“I’m trying to keep this together because you’re amazing - you inspire me," the host told Saldana.
But she didn't just want to complement the grieving mother. DeGeneres had a special surprise for the Saldana family...
"I’m sending you love all the time"
As Saldana joined her on stage, DeGeneres revealed she had read her blog posts about Ryan.
"I know what you’ve lost is something you can’t ever explain or imagine," the host said.
"Know that you are helping a lot of people with your blog. Continue writing your blog and continue knowing I’m sending you love all the time."
"Every blog you write is helping so many people," she added.
"The fact that you are so honest about how hard it is to get up every single day and the holidays and knowing how hard it must be this time of year — I can’t ever make up that loss for you."
Saldana tried to play down her loss, humbly saying that "everybody's going through something," and "we're all in it together."
But in fact, DeGeneres had a special surprise planned for the Saldanas.
A Christmas miracle
DeGeneres is always so generous with her guests, and this case was no exception.
The Saldanas were audience members during the show's annual Twelve Days of Giveaways event.
Along with the gifts they received that day, DeGeneres invited the Saldanas back for the final three episodes to get extra giveaways.
It's a small gesture for the host, but you can bet that seeing three more live episodes of her favorite show was exactly what Jacqui needed.
Of course, this isn't the only time DeGeneres showed off her awesome gift-giving skills.
She's so thoughtful
Last year, we all anxiously followed the news about Jimmy Kimmel's son, Billy.
He was born with a heart defect that required immediate surgery, and Kimmel's fans rallied around him as they waited for good news.
Thankfully everything turned out alright for Billy, but DeGeneres raised more than a million dollars for the newborn's charity fund anyways.
That's generous enough, but of course DeGeneres took it to another level.
When Kimmel appeared on her show, she surprised the late night host with a new wing of the Children's Hospital LA named in Billy's honor.
Kimmel was in tears as he thanked DeGeneres for the heartwarming gift.
Turning the tables
But of course, for DeGeneres's birthday last year, her wife Portia de Rossi had to out-gift the talk show host.
She revealed a new wildlife fund dedicated to protecting elephants and gorillas in the host's honor, and left her in tears as she called it "the best birthday gift."
We'd like to see DeGeneres try and top that.
Don't you just love when Ellen surprises her guests?