Ellen and Brian Mulvihill
Darren 13/05/01 – 25/08/01
It’s difficult to confine Darren’s little life to this short story even more difficult to imagine life before Darren. He is never more than a thought away and is spoken of every day. His little face with those beautiful blue eyes and those blow bubble lips is on the walls and mantles of all our homes.
Darren Michael Mulvihill was born at 8.50pm on Sunday May 13th 2001 to parents Brian & Ellen and brothers Donal, Timmy, Brian and Mikey his birth was awaited with great excitement and anticipation by all but especially by Mikey who looked forward to being the big brother and teaching Darren all those things only a big brother can.
Immediately at birth it was evident that Darren was not well, the diagnosis came piecemeal. Those first few days I think were the most difficult when the family had to come to terms with on the one hand welcoming baby Darren and on the other preparing to say goodbye. The diagnosis was Edward’s Syndrome- Trisomy 18, the bottom line those awful words, his condition was incompatible with life.
Darren came home from hospital after two weeks to the immense joy of all the family.
Mikey decorated the house with balloons and banners and we had fifteen wonderful weeks with Darren. His parents were brilliant; they didn’t hide him away and keep him all to themselves. They opened their door to everyone and we were all allowed to share in Darren’s life and death. I cannot describe how difficult this time was but we got through it with the help of family, friends and neighbours.
Darren passed away peacefully in his mother’s arms on Saturday 25th August 2001 surrounded by his family. So many people came to the house to offer words of comfort and support, the majority of whom had come to visit Darren in the previous weeks.
Because he died on the weekend of the Fleadh Cheoil he wasn’t buried until Monday which gave the family lots of time to say their goodbyes.
During his time with us he went to football matches, his cousin’s christening, to restaurants, to the beach and to visit the relics of St. Therese. His life was short but very full. Darren’s love has touched all our lives. It’s astonishing how one so tiny and helpless can exude so much love and inspire so many people to do good. To date in his name in the region of £30,000 has been raised for charities and two African families’ lives have been changed through sponsorship.
I have no doubt that the world is a better place because Darren Michael Mulvihill lived – That life is not about quantity or quality- it’s about Love.
The Mulvihill family has since been blessed with the gift of a precious daughter Molly.
She is a beautiful bubbly happy and healthy little girl who is loved and cherished by all those around her and is the life and soul of the household.
Life is full of surprises, no one knows what the future holds so we embrace life and enjoy our precious little girl and continue to keep Darren in that special corner of our hearts.
Mary O’ Sullivan – Collin