Butterfly Wings Program
What is the Butterfly Wings Program?
As the end of life approaches, it is natural that lifelong dreams, or final wishes, take on a greater sense of urgency. The Butterfly Wings Program’s mission is to facilitate current 3HC hospice patients in realizing a special dream or wish that would make a significant difference in his or her physical, emotional, or spiritual well-being.
Since it is the commitment of the Butterfly Wings Program to empower communities and recipients to share the joy of granting wishes and making dreams come true, individuals and groups within a patient’s community are invited to be involved in providing resources. For patients or families who are interested in learning more, your Hospice Social Workers can provide details and walk you through the process of submitting a wish to the Butterfly Wings Program.
Butterfly Wings Program in Action
In the darkest of times, there is always a glimmer of light to be found. Some would call this a bright spot. That’s definitely what Xander was in this world, a bright spot. It only seemed right that a bright spot be added to Xander’s life, and that is exactly what happened this fall. Xander had a wish to go on vacation in Myrtle Beach, SC with his mom, dad and especially his older brother. Thanks to the Butterfly Wings Program, with a blessing from his doctor, Xander’s wish was granted!
Xander and his family enjoyed a getaway at the Marina Inn at Grande Dunes in Myrtle Beach during the last weekend of October. Once Pirate’s Voyage & Dinner Show and Ripley’s Aquarium heard about Xander and his wish, they happily gave the family complimentary tickets during their stay. During the trip, Xander was transformed into Captain Jack Sparrow at Pirate’s Voyage and got to see Dory & Nemo swimming around at Ripley’s Aquarium. The family got dressed up as pirates to attend the Pirates Voyage attraction where they enjoyed a pirate battle sequence, BBQ feast, and a special photograph session with the pirates themselves! Ripley’s aquarium provided a relaxing experience for the family to take things at a slower pace, yet still have a wonderful experience. The best part of this story…he was able to share this entire experience with his parents and big brother!
Thanks to his wish being granted under the Butterfly Wings Program, Xander and his family were able to take a break from the schedules of medical appointments and tests to create fun memories of just being a typical family.
The fun & memories didn’t stop at the beach, though. Remember how magical Christmas was when you were a kid? Well, thanks to Santa Claus and some elves, the magic of the season was brought to Xander’s home a little early this year. On December 5th, Santa & his elves delivered gifts to Xander. Being the special kid that he is, Xander also picked out a necklace for his mom, a knife for his dad, and a Lego set for his brother that was also delivered that night. Crystal Weideman, a 3HC Social Worker, shared that, “Xander’s face lit up like a Christmas tree watching his family open up the gifts he had chosen for them.” Though Christmas is not just about Santa and gifts, what a joyous night that was! It wouldn’t have been possible without one special elf that donated the gifts, but we are certain Santa will leave something extra special in the elf’s stocking this year.
On December 31st, Xander passed away peacefully at home. His mother shared, “Our hearts are broken but we know he’s celebrating in Heaven and we are thankful for that. Please keep us in your prayers!” Though he is no longer a bright spot here on Earth, we know he is shining even brighter from above.
If you would like to be a part of making dreams come true by providing financial or in-kind gifts, or for more information about the Butterfly Wings Program, please contact Cierra Jorden, 3HC Social Work Manager at (252) 291-4400.