One summer around age six or seven, it became my mission to catch a butterfly. I wanted nothing more than to accomplish this seemingly impossible task.
Determined, and with many failed attempts, I slowly figured out how to win a butterfly's trust. Once caught and cupped in my hands, I named them Buttercup and intently studied their details, like their furry little body and antenna.
After letting it go, I shared my excitement with the person who'd understand how amazing this was the most, my Dad. His eyes lit up with excitement when I told him;
He told me to make sure never to touch their wings because they need the dust to fly and survive. Years later, I was reminded of this sweet memory when I caught my young son working hard to win the trust of a nearby butterfly.
I shared that same wisdom and chuckled at the realization of how many butterflies' lives my Dad had unknowingly saved.
That inspired us to plant a native butterfly garden to attract more fluttery visitors. Their visits inadvertently became a calming and grounding force for me personally as I dealt with the emotional ups and downs in the months before losing my Dad.
Symbolic and parallel to my struggles with grief, which co-existed with the exciting growth of our company, I leaned into my creative process, took those emotions, and poured them into my artwork. It was a transformative process, much like that of a butterfly.