Our last picture as a family. The girl holding Zephaniah is Dylan’s girlfriend. They are expecting in late November.
Darren Jacob Wallace
Birth: January 11, 2001
Death: May 17, 2018
To my son,
I’ll like you for always, I’ll Love you forever. As long as I’m living, my baby you’ll be.
Darren, I know you are gone. My heart knows, but it doesn’t seem real. I am urgently fighting to awaken myself from this nightmare. Losing you has to be the most difficult trial I’ve ever had to face. When I received the news that fateful morning, my life was forever changed. The place in my heart designated especially for you shattered. I know it will heal one day, but for now, it’s a mess.
You were a beautiful, mostly bald baby, Darren, full of joy almost always. You were pretty easy to care for, with very few fussy moments. Your eyes lit up when you smiled and your smile was infectious. And, oh my, were you just a little chubbers, just like little Miss Zephaniah. As your first few days turned to weeks and then to months, your easy-going temperament, continued to flourish. You were always happy and smiling. You continued to grow and so did your personality. Your physical attributes were changing as well. Your hair soon started grow out to a blond color and began to develop those every-womans-dream curls. Oh, those curls and those big, beautiful, bright blue eyes were all you. As with any child, you began to develop in other areas as well, talking, walking and full of energy. Your stunts got more daring, scary, and heart-stopping as your grew. You were always a free spirit. In those more spirited moments, when fear took hold of my heart and I almost lost it, it was still so hard to be upset with you and your zest for life. The happiness and joy you exhibited almost always calmed my jumbled heart.
You were definitely all boy. You had no fear and would try just about anything at least once, sometimes more so. Through your school years, you played a ton of sports and you were great at them all, very athletic. I am so proud of the two seasons you broadened your horizons and took up dance lessons. I always knew that you were more of an artistic personality. You sketched all the time, from the time you were a young boy. And you were great at it! Your art was creative, detailed, and intersting. Over the last few years, your artistic expression developed into photography. You had great eye for detail and took very beautiful photos with a phone, no less! You loved sunsets, your truck, and your Harley. You actually loved your truck so much you sold your Harley to buy the truck. You were constantly fiddling with your truck trying to get it exactly how you wanted it. You were bummed when you hit the parking lot poles. After that, you talked about your truck, non-stop, until you were able to start working on it again. With your photography, you highlighted your truck as much as possible. It was constantly being photographed in different ways, different areas, and different lighting. You were able to position yourself, your phone, and your truck in order to achieve the best angles — which can be a feat! I aked you once where you put your phone to take selfies with the truck. Your response: Anywhere I can get it to stay. To furter your artistic abilities, you recently took up guitar class in school. In the short time you were in the class, you learned so much and became quite good at playing. I remember you once telling me, as you fist begin to play, how much your fingertips hurt so you sent off for some finger covers. The day they came in the mail, you were so excited because now you could play without your fingers being in pain. Soon enough, though, your fingers did get callused over so you didn’t need the finger covers any more.
But even more important than your talent, Darren, was your heart. You had a heart of gold, so gentle and sweet. I know you got angry sometimes, but most of the times, you were gentle and kind. You didn’t like to argue, and you took to heart everything that was said to you in anger. It breaks my heart knowing how much yours was broken in your short life. You didn’t talk much unless you got excited, and you hardly ever got loud. The few ‘serious’ conversations you had still didn’t include much seriousness. I could always get more from you in the words you didn’t say, your mannerisms, in your eyes, and in the way you carried yourself. I didn’t need your words. I have seen the love in your eyes, as well as in your actions. You were so gentle and loving to each one of your siblings. You loved babies and treated them so gently. You would sit and hold them, just staring at them with all the love in your heart. One of the first things you would do in the recent past months when you came through the door is pick up your baby sister or you’d squat those long legs down in front of her to talk to her and kiss her on the cheek. You were kind and patient with each of your siblings until they got old enough to start pestering you. The girls you wouldn’t fuss at too much, but your brothers and you could tie it up. However, you knew your limits and theirs. You knew not to hurt them other than a good slug on the arm every so often. And, boy, could yall wrestle! Each time you started wrestling, it sounded like a tornado tearing through my house. I was convinced the walls would soon lift from the foundation. It never happened though. Darren, you had heart and I know you put it into the things, the people, and the places you loved most. You loved with all your heart. You played sports with all your heart. You worked hard at your talents with all your heart.
Darren, you also knew yourself well enough to know when you needed time alone. You were a thinker and could often be found in your room with your ear bud in, listening to your music. You loved country music. I didn’t want you sitting alone to long because I worried about you constantly. I’d often pop in for a minute or two, if only to tell you how much I love you. One time you told me, ‘I go from a house where nobody talks to me to a house where everyone wants to talk.’ You got exasperated with all the talking. Please understand, I talked to you so you wouldn’t sink so far into your head, but I also tried to give you your space. Like me, you were a quiet person who needed your space.
I love you, Darren. I am so blessed that God let me bring you into this world and so blessed that I was with you as you went to your final home. Thank your for the 17 wonderful years that will forever be etched in my heart.
Friends, as you read this, please remember Darren. Remember him for all he was. Remember his goodness and his love. Remember the fun times you had with him. Remember how he touched your life and the difference he made in it.