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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Now with a new afterword! A five star–reviewed, unforgettable story that bestselling author Homer Hickam calls “one of the most eloquent, moving, irresistible true stories” he’s ever read. The Waiting will touch your heart and make you believe in love’s enduring legacy, as well as 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 story that follows has been almost a hundred years in the making. After a lifetime of separation, Minka whispered an impossible prayer for the first time: Lord, I’d like to see Betty Jane before I die. What happened next was a miracle. Written by Cathy LaGrow (Minka’s granddaughter), The Waiting brings three generations of this most unusual family together over the course of a century in a story of faith that triumphs, forgiveness that sets us free, and love that never forgets. (As seen on The Today Show.)
admire you, but here are 86,000 of them that sure tried. Ruth Lee, you would be eternally dear to me just for the joy you’ve brought Grandma, but I’ve adored you from the moment we met. Thank you for being so generous with your story —and your life. In so many ways this book would not exist without Brian Lee. Thank you for finding Grandma, for loving her, for wanting this book to happen. Thank you for your financial support; your tireless work to get me a hundred little details, at all hours;
and Jennie were already seeking a husband for Minka. The sisters knew one or two girls, barely older than Minka, who’d already gotten betrothed. As Minka, wearing her Sunday best under her wool coat and clutching a borrowed luggage bag, waited for Honus to bring the truck around, she knew she appeared to be a favored child going on an adventure. In reality, she was so nervous she felt like throwing up. If Jane only knew. * * * A great unknown waited over the frozen plains, beyond the icy
the bustling city shops, Minka began to notice women pushing babies in frilly carriages. She was thankful that a large wool coat could help mask her now-obvious belly, but sometimes she caught someone giving her a long glance —and her face burned like a confession. It was not uncommon for girls her age to be married, of course, and none of these people knew she wasn’t —that was the whole reason for her having come to this city full of strangers. Still, the thought that passersby might know her
Forever after, there would be a split. Her life before May 22, 1929. And her life after. Little did she know that, just a few weeks before, Miss Bragstad had received the letter that would help set the course of Betty Jane’s life. Jewell, Iowa, May 8, 1929 Dear Miss Bragstad, Nine years ago, while we lived in Irene, S. Dakota, we adopted a little baby boy which was born at the House of Mercy. . . . The boy has given us much satisfaction. We have talked it over considerably of late, Mrs.
grass-flecked blankets and empty baskets. One of them shaded her eyes with a hand, peering toward the trees. “There they are!” the girl called and waved. Neither Minka nor Clara waved back. Clara climbed into the backseat of one of the cars and pressed against the side, wiping her face. She ignored a concerned query. “What is wrong with her?” Agatha muttered to another girl. Minka waited until the engines came alive and their sewing teacher was counting heads before she sought a different