FRASER’S MOUNTAIN, N.S. – On the evening her daughter died, Jodi MacIvor never saw the double-rainbow that coloured the sky over Pictou County.
She was at the Aberdeen Hospital on June 4, 2004 with her 20-month-old daughter Molly, where the injuries Molly incurred as a result of a motor vehicle mishap would prove too much to overcome.
“After that, people were sending us pictures of the rainbows, or bringing them to the house,” she says now.
That’s how Molly’s Rainbows got started: while her death was tragic, the people she left behind wanted to make something positive out of the sadness.
“Jodi and Molly shared a birthday – September 16th,” said Hayley Finley, Jodi’s sister, as the two sat at Jodi’s kitchen table, along with 10-year-old Hannah, who never knew her older sister (she has two other sisters, Gracie, 19, and Emma, who is seven).
“We were anticipating her birthday and how it was going to be,” Finley continued.
“The MacIvor family birthdays are always huge, lots of kids, lots of family, lots of fun (but) was it going to be a sad day, a hard day for Jodi? And one day she just said, ‘I want to have a party’.”
The Carnival of Rainbows is an event held every year, and what initially was a small get together at the MacIvor home became a bigger part of the community, one that turned into a fundraiser for the IWK and various Pictou County endeavours that support children and their families. To date, around $65,000 has been raised for the IWK, and another $28,000 for local agencies.
This year, it will be held this coming Saturday from 1-5 p.m. at North Nova Education Centre. In order to allow as many children to experience the day as possible, all the games and activities are free, although donations are accepted at the door.
“I wanted to celebrate her life,” Jodi says of the origins of Molly’s Rainbows.
“Life is still beautiful. The worse thing in the world we can do would be to take what happened and let it consume you. It’s not easy – not all of the time – but I believe we have two choices in life; we can choose to go down the road of misery, or we can choose the other road, choose to be happy and thankful for what we have.
“I got to be Molly’s mom for 20 months, so I was thankful that she was ours.”