Madawaska Valley Palliative Care is reminding people to reserve their butterfly if they are grieving the loss of a loved one.
The Memorial Butterfly Release will take place July 28th, but butterflies must be reserved by the 5th. The event is helping to raise money for the St. Francis Valley Healthcare Foundation. The event is organized by Dawn Cruchet, a former grief councilor who helps train Palliative Care volunteers. She says butterflies are grown at Lucy’s Butterfly Farm in Apsley. She says they come in a cooler, are warmed up and release back into nature. Crutchet says last year over 300 butterflies were released.
Cruchet says the symbol of palliative care is the monarch and its metamorphosis represents how people grieve. The caterpillar eats obsessively, as early grievers are all about focusing on their own pain. The caterpillar then becomes a chrysalis, which Cruchet says symbolizes the person feeling safe in their own place. She says the butterfly is the final stage, but like the transformation, it cannot be rushed. She says people feel like they need to fix grievers, but it is more complicated than that. She says grieving is unique to an individual, a universal experience, but not very understood. She says successful grief work allows you to enjoy the memories of the person lost without the pain. Crutchet says this event gives grievers the opportunity to honor the person they are mourning, so they can progress in their grief journey.
Cruchet says she has been working with Madawaska Palliative Care for about 7 years ago. They have a team of 80 trained volunteers who visit patients in home, at the Valley Manor and the Water Tower Lodge. Cruchet says how fast the group became a reality shows the power of the community.
To reserve your butterfly, please click here.