"What Happens When People Open Their Hearts? They Get Better." : Meeting Veronica•
Posted on May 03 2019
There are so many layers to the profound pain of child loss, one layer is the horrific thought “will they be forgotten?” Outliving a child disrupts the natural order of life and now your role as a parent is to be the caregiver of your child’s legacy as an eternal soul. We continue to work in Jordana’s honour so people will remember her for the colourful spirit she embodied then and now. Jordana’s Rainbows is our avenue to do this, but this also publicly exposes our grief and vulnerablity. Who knew then that this decision, to release our pain and share her love, would bring us the one individual that truly embodies everything Jordana!
My first post on Jordana’s Rainbows was of my boys doing an act of kindness in their sister’s honour. They in turn nominated their friends to do the same and the Rainbows began. We watched as countless people carried out incredible acts of good in Jordana’s name - feeding the homeless, afternoon visits to local retirement homes or kids surprising parents with a random “Hey, thanks mom! I love you”. Luciano and I saw first hand the magnitude of sharing our daughter and knew that our decision to share our grief was allowing us to heal our hearts and spread her love further.
In July of 2016, as the Jordana’s Rainbows “Acts of Kindness” challenges continued, Jordi introduced me to Veronica and Stefania. These two amazing young ladies announced that for their act of kindness they would create and sell wish bracelets in every colour of the rainbow. They announced they would make enough bracelets to raise $500 but the response was so overwhelming, that they raised $10,000 by September 30th. This response encouraged Veronica and Stefania to create Love and Above, a company that would help raise money for various causes through the sale of their beautiful handcrafted jewelry. This small act of kindness turned into a new business and an incredibly generous donation of $50,000 to Jordana’s SickKids DIPG fund! The uber sweet, funny and talented Stefania graduated from her Masters of Social Work last year and found a job in her field (this is definitely Jordi approved). Veronica however, was discovering that she too, was born part unicorn with a mind for all things Jordana, she was excited to continue chasing rainbows with me. Both Veronica and Stefania agreed that Jordana's Rainbows carried so much potential to make a difference in this world, and decided that in order to give it the attention it deserved it would continue on as its own brand under The Jordana's Rainbows Foundation.
Veronica may have not known Jordana on earth but she carries her in a way far beyond human understanding. Sometimes when I speak with Veronica, I feel like I am talking to a grown up version of Jordana; she laughs at my jokes and mid conversation will tell me a random idea that makes the most perfect sense. I know it’s her job, but I truly believe it’s a labour of love for her as much as it is for me. Veronica, a lovely young woman I met through Jordana’s Rainbows, is now the Creative Director of this very Foundation.
I don't believe in coincidences, I don't think I randomly met a young talent like Veronica who didn't know Jordana and could be capable of loving her so much. I believe our decision to start Jordi’s legacy, through acts of kindness, was the kismet that lead me to Veronica and that Jordana was sending me her rainbows of approval. Jordi, I know that the darkness can keep me from seeing everyone of your Rainbows, but your gift of Veronica to help me navigate this darkness ensures I never miss them for long!
"Vulnerability is an act of courage because you merge with your authentic self, instead of hiding behind a facade to appease others." Through the vulnerability that came with losing my daughter we created Jordana's Rainbows, which ultimately led to meeting Veronica. Much like Jordana, Veronica grew up with a strong love for arts and crafts, glitter and all the colours of the rainbow. Veronica really resonated with Jordi's playful and childish spirit which is a reflection of how as humans, we are all seeking happiness in the littlest of things. In 2015, Veronica was experiencing many transitions in her life that ultimately led her to Jordana. Through her storms, she always wanted to see the bright rainbow at the end. With her creativity as a driving force she wanted to use it to be a positive change in the world. Forever connected in spirit, Veronica wants to continue where Jordana's glittering spirit left off, leaving the world better than she found it.
Thank you to those who are willing to expose their vulnerability and seek those things in life that bring courage and happiness. Through The Chronicles, I hope you find many of those things right here.
The Instagram post that started it all:
|stefbaccs Thank you to @melissaaniicolefor nominating me for the@jordanasrainbows challenge 🌈 In honor of Jordana Fiorini I have pledged to sell $500 worth of wish bracelets, made by my friend @veronicamarziale ❤️ All proceeds from each sale benefit SickKids Hospital, Canada's most research-intensive hospital and its largest centre dedicated to improving children's health. While I did not know Jordana, I feel honored to be a part of her beautiful legacy. I would like to thank my incredible family and friends who have already purchased bracelets and invite those of you who haven't to check out Veronica's work. I nominate @natalz @nini.137 and @nicolepannese 💘 YOU HAVE 48 HOURS TO COMPLETE ONE RANDOM ACT OF KINDESS 🌈💪💕 GO!!! #JordanaStrong #DIPG#LoveIsBiggerThanCancer|
The Jordana's Rainbows Wish Bracelet - launched on August 22nd, 2016, was created in the seven colours of the rainbow representing the seven chakras and spiritual centres of the body.
Veronica & Stefania with their contributions to SickKids Hospital.
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