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The Waiting: The True Story of a Lost Child, a Lifetime of Longing, and a Miracle for a Mother Who Never Gave Up
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The Waiting: The True Story of a Lost Child, a Lifetime of Longing, and a Miracle for a Mother Who Never Gave Up

4.48  ·  Rating details ·  2,559 ratings  ·  506 reviews
An unforgettable true story that will touch your heart and make you believe in love's enduring legacy, and in the power of prayer.In 1928, 16-year-old Minka was on a picnic in the woods when she was assaulted and raped. And suddenly this innocent farm girl--who still thought the stork brought babies--was pregnant. The baby was secretly born, named Betty Jane, and given up ...more
Hardcover, 323 pages
Published May 6th 2014 by Tyndale Momentum (first published May 1st 2014)
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Average rating 4.48  · 
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 ·  2,559 ratings  ·  506 reviews

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Natalie Vellacott
Mar 21, 2016 rated it really liked it
I received this book free and really enjoyed it. It is a biography about a teenage girl who was sadly raped and persuaded by her family to give up the resulting child for adoption. The mother mourned for years over her "lost" daughter even after marrying and having children of her own. Incredibly they were reunited when the mother was 94 years of age after a grandchild began digging into their family history.

The story is extremely well written and the detail contained seems almost unbelievable f
Holly Wolf
I will be forever stunned that this story is true. How incredibly astonishing. Great read!!
Cathy Elliott
Apr 22, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Just the little I'd heard about this story made me salivate to read the book. And it did not disappoint. Heartfelt and deeply touching, THE WAITING shows a mother's unfailing love over a span of many, many years. Steadfast hope in what seemed a hopeless situation. The writing is winsome and the story compelling. Sometimes through tears, I found myself cheering on Minka until the last page. Don't miss this one!
Dec 15, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 5-star
This story is simply amazing! It's hard to imagine that one person could go through a century of such change, loss and heartbreak with so much faith and perseverance. The writing is beautiful. The words come to life with so much detail you'd think you were reading a fiction novel. Times and places are so delicately weaved together throughout the book. The occasional interjection of historical events was so well done and manages to really tie everything together and remind you of the world Minka ...more
Jan 16, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Wow! An incredible biography that brought tears to my eyes. Beautiful, heart warming, eye opening, historical, sad, and special. The modesty in relaying difficult circumstances was appreciated, and it added to the integrity of the story. Just having attended my own great- grandmothers 100th birthday, and having watched her out live all her children, makes me marvel at their reunion that much more.
Apr 22, 2014 rated it really liked it
Minka, a young girl of sixteen has lived a sheltered life. Although she lives on a farm she is unaware of where babies come from. She has always believed that "the stork" brings babies to married women. On the day of Minka's sewing class picnic her world is flipped upside down. Cornered in the woods and assaulted by a stranger, Minka is left feeling scared and alone. She decides to never tell anyone what has happened...then three months later she discovers she is pregnant. Her mother and stepfat ...more
Dec 26, 2014 rated it it was amazing
In 1928, Minka "Minnie" DeYoung was a 16-year-old growing up on a dairy farm near Aberdeen, S.D., leading a hard but sheltered life.
She literally still believed that babies were delivered by a stork.
When she was assaulted by a stranger after wandering away from a picnic, she knew it hurt. She was humiliated and ashamed, and the shy teenager's response was to not tell anybody what had happened.
She had never heard of the word "rape." She certainly didn't know she could have a baby because of what
Apr 23, 2014 rated it it was amazing
In 1928, a 16-year-old girl was assaulted in the woods by a stranger while attending a picnic. Months later she learned she was pregnant. Sent away to live, first, with relatives and then at a Lutheran home for unwed mothers, the girl became a mother faced with a choice: give her daughter up for adoption to a family or keep her and live with the stigma of being a single mother.

She'd carry the decision to give up her daughter, whom she named Betty Jane, mostly in secret for almost 80 years. And t
Jul 12, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I loved The Waiting by Cathy LaGrow. If you like biographies, this is a must read. I fell in love with Minka from the very start of her story and by the end, I wanted her to adopt me as her granddaughter. I so admire her choice to stay positive despite the trauma that she experienced as a teen. Her love for her daughter never faultered through the decades. She didn't allow the hole in her life to destroy her or detract from the love she had share as her life moved forward. It gave me chills when ...more
Aug 18, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Read this book! It is amazing. It is heartbreakingly beautiful. It will cause you to openly weep. Sincerely one of the best true stories I have read. I learned so much - or at least more deeply about - love, faith, family relationships and the ties that bind. Minka, the woman whose story this is, is truly remarkable and makes me want to be a better person. I want to be more like her!

Truly grateful to Minka’s granddaughter for writing this book, for sharing this singular story. She did a wonderfu
Katie Alicea
May 06, 2014 rated it it was amazing
The Waiting is an amazing true story that brings the reader into the heart and mind of Minka, a young girl who's life was changed forever because of a stranger in the woods. As a new mom, my heart ached as I read Minka's heartfelt letters inquiring as to how you precious Betty Jane is doing. The love she had for her baby all those years is remarkable and inspiring. This book is more than just a true story. It gives us a real look into the power of perseverance and prayer. This book inspired and ...more
Cindi Satterstrom
May 10, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I must warn you that you should have a box of tissues at the ready while reading this book. It is so well written that you feel as if you are a part of the family going through this with them. Cathy LaGrow did such an amazing job that I feel as if Minka is a friend and I am so happy that the story has turned out the way it has. I can't imagine going through everything she has gone through in life and remaining so strong. What an amazing woman and her story is truly extraordinary.
A definite must
Erica T
Apr 22, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Heartbreaking and yet a beautiful story. I loved how it came together in the end. So satisfying!
Carolina Imhof
Sep 19, 2018 rated it liked it
Sad story, nicely written
What grabbed me and pulled me in when I requested to review this book was it’s poignant cover – Minka’s twisted and aged hands holding an old picture of a woman intent on studying the infant on the chair next to her – something deeper than the description spoke to me and made me want to read this book. Minka’s life was one of hardship and loss – loss of her father early on, then later her innocence, and so on – working on a dairy farm from the time she was old enough to carry a bucket deformed h ...more
Apr 23, 2014 rated it it was amazing
"The Waiting: The true story of a lost child, a lifetime of longing, and a miracle for a mother who never gave up" by Cathy LaGrow with Cindy Coloma. This is one of the most powerful books I have ever read. It is a true story about this wonderful (who I would love to meet) woman name Minka finding her daughter after 77 years. She was raped when she was just 16 years old in 1928 and she gave up her daughter, Betty Jane, to adoption praying that her little girl would have a good life. Well when sh ...more
Abbie Riddle
Jun 23, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I was attracted to this book because of the cover art I was sure at first glance that this would be about a Jewish survivor, but it is a far cry from that. This is a story about a choice to keep a life and how that life changed the course of another life. It is the story of God's healing, love, forgiveness and His unsurpassed grace in the midst of our lives. It is about the crimson thread of love that binds people together and brings them through things. In 1928 a young innocent girl went to a ...more
Apr 25, 2014 rated it it was amazing
"The Waiting" is an extraordinary story of all times. What started in the beginning of the 20th century and ended only in the beginning of the 21st is something powerful, something you do not see or hear about every day. Everything was amazing - Minka's heart and all the events that made a full circle.

First, Minka loved her daughter, the result of rape. This is the first time I hear about someone actually wanting to keep such a baby. Nowadays women would just pop in the morning after pill even i
May 03, 2014 rated it it was amazing
When I started this book I wanted to read quickly to find out what was going to happen. And when I got to the end I didn't want it to be the end because it was such a heart-warming, heart-wrenching story.

This is an incredible true story of God's faithfulness, and of a woman who never gave up and never stopped loving a daughter she gave up for adoption, throughout her whole life. She thought of her every single day and prayed for her often. The story begins in 1929 and takes us on journey of almo
Katherine Jones
Jun 12, 2014 rated it it was amazing
From its first chapter, this story hooked my emotions and kept me firmly on the line for every chapter thereafter. Toward the beginning, to be honest, my emotions ranged toward the negative. I found myself getting quite indignant at the childhood that belonged to Minka. She was loved, yes. But the values of her parents and her community–values imported from an austere Old World culture–made me wish I could reach through the pages and shake some of these people. (There’s a good reason for child l ...more
Jul 15, 2014 rated it it was amazing
The Waiting is one of those books that will keep you turning pages until the last one. It is the story about a 16 year old girl who was assaulted during a picnic. Several weeks later, the girl found out she was pregnant and at that time (1928), unwed girls were often sent away because of the stigma of being single and pregnant. The girl, whose name is Minka and the grandmother of the author, was sent to live with some relatives but later went to stay with a home for unwed mothers run by the Luth ...more
May 17, 2014 rated it really liked it
Recommended to Erica by: Pattib
Shelves: library-books, 2014
This was recommended to me by Pat Ballard a new member to Goodreads (thanks to me). This was a wonderful true story with so much heart and sacrifice. ***(spoiler alerts below) It's obvious that the culture, her Dutch heritage, and work ethic played a big part in Minnie's life and unfortunately some of it resulted negatively. I couldn't fathom giving up my first born after spending time bonding and caring for the child, and then to go years without knowledge of how the child was doing. A delightf ...more
Dec 18, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: emotional-health
Cathy LaGrow nails it. she does an exceptional job telling her grandmother's story. She reveals the extraordinary character of one who led a seemingly ordinary life. I was amazed at how fascinated I was by Minka's life story. I loved the portrayal of the strength of her faith and how it developed through her trials.

I was most surprised to find it shed light on my own Dutch heritage (my mother's mother was born in Holland and also called, Minnie, though short for Wilhelmina). For me, it answered
Louise Pearson
Jul 07, 2014 rated it it was amazing
The Waiting is a true story of a young teenager who was raped, became pregnant, and months later discovered the changes in her body were because she was pregnant. On the advice of her minister and parents she went to a Lutheran House of Mercy for unwed girls where she had the baby. In spite of the fact that she adored the baby she had and wanted to keep her, she was counseled that for the baby’s sake she should give the baby to a good home. Naming her Betty Jane, Minka wanted only the best for t ...more
Dawn Hamsher
May 22, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Oh, Minka...what a story you have! And what a testament to your faith in God and love for your daughter.

Great story. Tragic, but with a very happy ending. You fall in love with Minka and her family and you love hearing about her life, even the little details. I didn't want to put it down. Mothers will love reading this...the bond between mother and child is powerful and this story celebrates it better than any other I've ever read!

I am amazed at how nicely the story flows and all the life detail
Apr 30, 2014 rated it it was amazing
This story is truly amazing. Minka is just extraordinary. The story is just full of terrific people - Jennie, Miss Bragstad, Betty Jane's (Ruth's) adoptive parents, Dawn, Brian. The authors must have spent so much time researching the details of this book. I am just blown away.

As an adoptee it also touches my heart. I was also blessed as Ruth was, however my birthmother passed away in a car accident when she was 46, ten years after we were reunited. Funny to think that Minka and Ruth may have mo
Shirley (stampartiste)
Wonderful memoir of a fascinating woman who unwillingly gave her daughter up for adoption in 1929 and spent the next 77 years living her life while never forgetting her first-born child. While I found the story of Minka's longing for her child to be heart-wrenching, I was more fascinated by the character of this woman. She was not only strong and resilient but tender and selfless. It made me wish I had known this woman. I'm sure those who were in her life felt truly blessed by her wisdom. Cathy ...more
Jun 18, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Such an amazing story! Words cannot express how much I truly enjoyed this book. I shed tears of sadness in the beginning and held back tears of joy at the end as a story of 100 years in the making came to a close. I would highly recommend this book to anyone! It is a story of a mother's love and her faith in a God who took something very tragic and turned it into something beautiful. Awesome read!
May 15, 2014 rated it it was amazing
This story was so incredible! As a mother I found my heart was breaking along with Minkas but I was also so inspired by her sacrificial love and strength. I love the way it was written and how the author brought in historic events to remind us of the amazing span of years her grandmother lived through. Truly a moving and memorable read!
Wayne Hurst
May 05, 2014 rated it it was amazing
The first seven chapters will have you on an emotional roller coaster. The captivating story keeps you page turning for the remainder. An exceptional read brought to life by the exquisite word wrangler Mrs. Cathy Lagrow. What an outstanding freshman performance. Looking forward to the movie.
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Cathy LaGrow first fell in love with books as a young girl, when she often chose to lose herself in a story rather than play outside. That love has never waned. She estimates that she's read more than two thousand books, and she habitually collects new titles much faster than she can read them.

Her writing endeavors include her blog, Windows and Paper Walls; a story for Chicken Soup for the Soul ti

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