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As I wrote that first letter, I acknowledged the hopes and fears of parenthood that I had held for our child. Over time, as I continued to write letters to our children, I claimed their deaths as my own loss.

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Writing about my confusion and grief enabled me to mourn the awfulness of your death. Not as an angry shout at the futility of life in a world that burned me one too many times. But to acknowledge the loss of a life I was growing to love, the end of a journey that hardly had a chance to begin, the absence of a relationship I was looking forward to entering. Talking about how I cried for you, for what you would bring to my life, was infinitely more valuable than finding a cure for the pain of your death.

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I think I felt like I paid my dues with the first miscarriage. The second miscarriage forced me to face the possibility of never having children. It also stretched out over three uncertain weeks. We were camping in Maine when Kristine started spotting. We spent the next three weeks going to weekly ultrasounds, seeing a heartbeat that was slower than it should be, and coming back a week later to see what had changed. We could do nothing except wait.

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One symbol I grappled with during that time was that of the open hand. It had been foundational when Kristine and I began dating, and again when we decided to get married. I understood that you must love your spouse unconditionally; recognizing that at times this love allows them to hurt you.

I knew conceptually that you must love your living children with the same open hand, but I had never considered the open hand as something that I needed to practice while our child was still in the womb. Now I had to decide whether I would protect myself from being hurt because this child would probably die, or if I would be willing to voice my love and my hope for my child even if I would never meet that child.

Skip to the beginning of the images gallery. Letters to My Unborn Children. Meditations on the silent grief of miscarriage. Add to Wish List Add to Compare. In Letters to My Unborn Children: Meditations on the Silent Grief of Miscarriage, Shawn Collins takes the reader from the grief and uncertainty of miscarriage through what ultimately becomes a beautiful journey of acceptance.

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Shawn Collins grew up in Kenya as a missionary kid. This cultural diversity built a foundation that influenced his faith and vocation. As a Christian he merges influences from nondenominational, Lutheran and Presbyterian traditions. His work in the aerospace and energy industries integrates graduate degrees in mechanical engineering M.


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He regularly writes and pres Dr. He regularly writes and presents on a variety of systems engineering, organizational behavior, and theology topics.

Letters to My Unborn Children: Meditations on the Silent Grief of Miscarriage by Shawn T. Collins

Letters to My Unborn Children reflects how engineering, anthropology, theology, and his foundational years in Kenya all impact his experiences of grief and suffering. Tembea pamoja is a Kiswahili term meaning walk together. It symbolizes the commitment he and Kristine made to integrate the miscarriages into their lives.

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It also symbolizes the hope that Letters to My Unborn Children will encourage others who grieve. You are not alone. We can walk together.