Surrey Hospice Society
MEMORIAL BUTTERFLY RELEASE
July 30th 2022, 10:00am - 12:00pm
Bill Reid Amphitheatre,17728 - 64 Ave, Cloverdale B.C.
*Pre-orders are now over, you can call 604-584-7006 to order over phone
or please come to the event and we will have extra butterflies there.
This event is inspirational and meaningful as we share some time together remembering and honoring our loved ones. Butterflies are released in honor of loved ones, by all ages, in celebration, and in memory - all in support of Surrey Hospices Society's grief programs.
The event is open to the public, and happens between 10:00am & 12:00 pm at Bill Reid Amphitheatre 17728 - 64 Ave, in Cloverdale B.C.
Please arrive on time or a bit early, to get parking and register. The Butterfly Release will happen promptly at 11am, & will see 100 Painted Lady Butterflies take flight for the first time amongst the beautiful park on the grounds.
With limited numbers of butterflies available, pre-ordering is recommended for those who want to participate in the actual release. Butterflies can be pre-ordered here online, please click "pre-order now" or by phone: 604-584-7006 for $20.00 each. Limited butterflies will be available on event day beginning at 10:00 am on a first come, first serve basis. The parking lot is reserved for our event and the Amphitheatre and park grounds are fully wheelchair accessible.
In addition to the spectacular butterflies in flight, we will have paper butterflies where you can write a special message to your loved one and hang on our Hope Tree. Beverages and snacks will be provided by our sponsors Chartwell retirement residences.
Support & Awareness
Providing support to palliative patients, their loved ones and the bereaved. Trained Hospice Volunteers offer compassionate care and support to people of all cultures, living at the end of life.
Ongoing grief and bereavement support extends to family members within our volunteer-led programs, and on a 1-to-1 basis with our Registered Clinical Counselors. Surrey Hospice Society provides various grief programs and memorial events.
Honouring the Life of Angelina Premia
There are not enough words to truly speak about Angelina (whom we fondly called Angie) and the wonder and light that she brought along with her every day. I wanted to start with a quote from Maya Angelou that I felt truly encompassed how Angie lived her life till the end. It says: “I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”
I wanted to take a bit of time to really highlight who Angie was, but in order to know her, we have to start at the beginning of her story… to be exact – at 21 weeks gestation. That was the moment in time where our family began our advocacy journey and the moment in time where Angie’s fight truly began… You see what doctors saw in that ultrasound was an imperfect “fetus”, a problem, a challenge, a baby that wouldn’t survive in the world, so they did what many doctors would do and told us to abort. Even at 21 weeks our girl was a fighter, a warrior, a one-in-a-million odd that would change our lives and the lives of many as we knew it. Despite all the odds stacked against us, we knew our baby girl was destined for greatness and that God’s plan is always for our good.
36 weeks…the moment our lives forever changed and when she made her grand debut into this world with what was likely to be one of the largest audiences I’ve ever known. Doctors from multiple units crammed into one room coming to see the miracle that she was - the beautiful beacon of hope that their stats said wouldn’t make it. Her entrance was as bright and beautiful as she was. From her very first day she was already conquering odds and fighting battles bigger than her but that never stopped her. From then on it was every minute of every day that was doubted and challenged. Would she make it 1 hour, 1 day, 1 week until the doctors truly couldn’t give us a clear definitive answer as to how long we truly had with her. You see from the beginning we never truly knew how long she’d be with us for but that never stopped us from loving her and from her loving us. She loved physical touch and being with people. As she continued to grow, we had many scares, countless surgeries, times where we were told to take her off breathing support because they thought “she’d likely not make it” but she did!! I’d like to say you survived but she did more than that. She thrived. She thrived in the life and the body that she was given despite all odds and medical opinions.
For many people, Angie’s story is an inspiration for all that she overcame and all that she fought through in her life, but you see, she never knew anything different… she only knew how to fight and to love – and loving…now that was something she was an expert in.
So instead, I wanted to focus on the lessons and the legacy that she left behind for us. Now even that would likely take us too long, so I’ve narrowed it down to 3. 3 lessons and legacies that Angie left behind so we could also learn how to Live Like Ang:
1. Love. Love deeply, intensely, and wholeheartedly. Ang was special. No not because of her diagnosis but because of her light. Ang was the one person who could change anyone’s mood with a simple smile and hug. She had this innate ability to connect with those who really needed it. If I were to ask any of you what your favourite memory of Angie was there’s a 99% chance that it would involve a big squeal and a massive Angie hug. You see that was her trademark – her way of connecting with those around her. Despite never saying a word in the traditional manner, she left each of us better with every interaction, every hug, and every smile. She saw past each of our flaws, our inabilities and our failures and showed an agape kind of love through her small but mighty actions.
2. Perspective. Angie gave us the gift of perspective. She reminded us that most of our problems are not really problems, and to be grateful for what we have. We must savor the sweet, beautiful moments we have every day, because ultimately life is fragile and someday all too soon, we must say goodbye. See most people saw her shine through her love and her hugs which yes, she did that impeccably but you see, it was in the 1:1 moments that we truly got to see her perseverance, hard work and determination shine through. It was in those moments that I genuinely got to understand the true meaning of perspective and what it meant to “walk in someone’s shoes.” You see I got the gift of perspective through her. She inspired me not because of her ability to persevere doing daily tasks but the strength and focus she placed into each task. Her driven focus when encouraged and given success. Many of us have naturally failed our special needs community and that’s okay. It happens to the best of us from time to time. But what Ang taught us is that we can each do better. By learning to make time to connect, be intentional with our words and actions and through simple acts of kindness and love, together we each can make a difference in the world by simply switching our perspective from ourselves to “how can I support/ cheer/ excite someone else today.” Ang did that so naturally and intuitively. She’d hug without question, love without hesitation, and see through you with a simple smile. It was her gift of connection and perspective to each of us and for that we are thankful. You made us all better by simply being You.
3. Dream. Dream big, dream boldly, dream the impossible. I’ll admit, this wasn’t something that came naturally to me but over the past few years my dreams for you grew bigger, bolder and some may even say crazy or ridiculous but that was just it – If I wasn’t going to dream it for you, who would. I had dreams of you graduating high school and walking across the stage, of you taking your first solo steps, to you meeting our future grand babies and you working in a job that you loved. Some of these dreams I was lucky enough to witness during your time here on earth with us but for some of these dreams I’ll have to wait till we meet again in heaven. She taught us about kindness and patience and loving without condition, Angie gave us the gift of unconditional love. Unconditional love is loving even when it hurts, even when it’s not easy. It’s loving because you simply can’t help but love. And that is the greatest triumph of any life. To love and be loved. And Angie taught us how to love without words, without limits,
without reasons. And finally, Angie gave us the gift of beauty. Her life wasn’t easy. There were a lot of hard times, for her and for our family but she taught us that we can see past the difficulties and find the beauty, for there is always beauty. Angie was our rainbow. We can both mourn the loss of her life and celebrate the life she led, with the lessons she taught us. May we never forget this beautiful gift and honor her memory every time we look up to the sky, look past the clouds and see the rainbow.