Waiting Child: How the Faith and Love of One Orphan Saved the Life of Another

Overview

"This is a story about the perseverance of a little girl's heart and the remarkable making of a family."

- Detroit News

"My tradition teaches that one who saves a single life saves an entire world. The Waiting Child is the same teaching, but from the deepest place of the author's heart."

- Rabbi Mitchell Chefitz, author of The Thirty-third Hour

"Jaclyn's touching story shows that anyone can stand against injustice—-and that loving others is the...

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The Waiting Child: How the Faith and Love of One Orphan Saved the Life of Another

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Overview

"This is a story about the perseverance of a little girl's heart and the remarkable making of a family."

- Detroit News

"My tradition teaches that one who saves a single life saves an entire world. The Waiting Child is the same teaching, but from the deepest place of the author's heart."

- Rabbi Mitchell Chefitz, author of The Thirty-third Hour

"Jaclyn's touching story shows that anyone can stand against injustice—-and that loving others is the highest purpose of the human spirit at any age, in any circumstance. A life changing book!"

- Dr. Wan Yan Hai, scholar, activist and director of Beijing Institute of Health Education

"A little child leads adults on a soul journey . . . a book of love, faith, and miracles."

- Rev. Nancy M. Wood, United Methodist minister

"An inspirational journey for the heart."

- Robin Lee Hatcher, author of Firstborn

"Personal, tender, and inspiring, reflecting what can happen when there are plenty of resources, love, and faith."

- Ann Arbor News

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Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature
Heroes come in all shapes and sizes, Cindy Champnella tells us in The Waiting Child. And sometimes they are right in our own families. When Champnella adopted her daughter Jaclyn from China, she discovered a feisty four-year-old with a mission. In the orphanage, Jaclyn had cared for a tiny toddler named Xiao Mei Mei. She would not rest until "her baby" had a new mama, too. In this moving tribute to love and tenacity, Champnella paints a picture of tedious bureaucracy, overworked orphanage staff, and the kindness of those who helped bring Xiao Mei Mei home to America. Champnella's book is both informative and inspiring. Three cheers for Jaclyn—and for her good-humored, good-hearted author-mom, too! 2003, St. Martin's Press,
— Mary Quattlebaum
Kirkus Reviews
Adoption activist Champnella describes how her four-year-old daughter persuaded her new family to help the little boy she left behind in China. The author is frank about the stresses and dilemmas she and husband Rick faced after they adopted Lou Jiao in 1999 and renamed her Jaclyn. Though sympathetic to the efforts scantily funded Chinese orphanages are making to take care of the thousands of abandoned children like Lou Jiao, she is also disturbed by some of their practices. While most employees are loving caregivers, such amenities as toilets, beds, and clothing are grossly inadequate, corporal punishment is common, and bullying goes unpunished. These conditions haunted Jaclyn’s dreams during her first year in America and made her difficult to handle, especially around bedtime. Cindy and Rick already had six-year-old Kate, and three-year-old Chinese adoptee Christy, but from the moment she became their daughter, Jaclyn was obviously different. Energetic and high-spirited, with an excellent sense of humor, she also talked obsessively about her "baby," worrying that he was being bullied and not taken care of. As she learned more English, Jaclyn campaigned to get that baby, Xiao Mei Mei, adopted. She prayed each night and constantly badgered her mother. In late 1999, Champnella took Jaclyn to China, met Xiao Mei Mei, and was immediately smitten. She and Rick decided to adopt the tiny boy, even though their finances were stretched thin and she could barely juggle her job as a school administrator with her family responsibilities. A happy solution to their dilemma was provided when the author’s sister Laura, another adoptive parent who had met Xiao Mei Mei on the same visit, declared that shewanted to adopt him. Champnella affectingly details how Jaclyn accepted this option for Xiao Mei Mei (newly christened Lee), finding joy in having him close and peace in no longer having to worry about his plight. Sensitively pitched, moving, and refreshingly unsentimental.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780312309640
  • Publisher: St. Martin's Press
  • Publication date: 4/7/2004
  • Edition description: First Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 272
  • Sales rank: 965,355
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.50 (h) x 0.60 (d)

Meet the Author

Cindy Champnella, is a speaker and advocate for adoption issues.

Jaclyn Champnella is a 2003 Congressional Coalition "Angel in Adoption" award recipient.

They live in Farmington Hills, Michigan.

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Table of Contents

Acknowledgments ix
"The Waiting Child" xi
Preface xiii
1. The First Meeting 1
2. Getting to Know You 17
3. The First Farewell 25
4. Finding Her Way Home 35
5. To Know Jaclyn 41
6. Jaclyn's New Life 51
7. Jaclyn's Baby 61
8. Jaclyn's First Birthday 69
9. The Greatest Love 75
10. China, Round 3 81
11. Introducing ... Tan Dong Jin 91
12. The "L" Word 103
13. The Twist in the Road 117
14. The Lessons Learned at Chinese School 123
15. The Ever-Present Xiao Mei Mei 131
16. Jaclyn's Past 137
17. Two Steps Forward ... Three Steps Back 149
18. The Darkest Hour 155
19. The Four Freedoms 163
20. The Long-Awaited News 173
21. The Promise Fulfilled 183
22. A New Beginning 193
23. A Crack in the Wall 199
24. Lee's New Life 209
25. Jaclyn's Gift 221
26. A Time for Healing 231
Afterword 241
List of Photographs 245
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Sort by: Showing all of 14 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted June 23, 2003

    Loved this book!

    I could not put this book down and found myself wiping tears from my eyes as I read it. Each chapter begins with a picture and I had to go back to look at the pictures over and over again. It was a heartwarming true story about unconditional love, the love of a little girl for her 'little Xiao Mei Mei'. If the word gets out, I think this book would on the bestseller list.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 24, 2010

    A Great Book

    This book is an amazing story about Jaclyn and 'her baby'. It shows that love and faith can make great things happen. To those people who are saying this book was a disappointment (ahem the idiot on the last page) you aren't a very smart person. How can you not see how wonderfully the author writes Jaclyn's story? Oh, I know how you can't see it. Because you don't have a heart. Some people say this books is racist and self-serving, yes I think the author went to China to adopt two kids is AWFUL! That is SO racist and self-serving. (note the sarcasam) This book, in my opinion, is wonderfully written, has great infomation, and shows great lessons in life.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 27, 2007

    Best adoption resource ever!

    As a mom to 5 (including 2 bio, 1 from Korea, and 2 from China), this is the most accurate adoption resource I've found. My daughter's story was so similar to the author's, right down to the language mistakes that she used to make when she first arrived home. I recommend this book to anyone considering older child adoption. Contrary to what has been written in prior reviews, I do not see this as a 'dark' book. It is a REAL book. You will see the difficult side, and you will see the joyful side of adoption. I will say that by and large, most orphanages seem to be better run and the care is better than what this child experienced while in China. However, the author makes this clear in her story and does a nice job of storytelling while still honoring the Chinese culture. I recommend this book to anyone considering older child international adoption. My only recommendation for improving this book is that it should come with a box of tissues attached. You will need them!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 11, 2007

    A reviewer

    I am currently in the process of adopting a little girl from Guatemala, and although this is a China story, it is universal in the world of adoption. People with or without an interest in adoption will be inspired by this book. It is also a wonderful faith story, a story inspired by 'the least of these'.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 26, 2007

    Best adoption story

    When I bought this book, I was just looking for a good read. Little did I know that this book was about to chang my life! After reading it, I instantly decided that we too would be adopting from China. I have read many adoption books since that time but can honestly say that this is the best real-life adoption story that I have ever read. You cannot walk away from reading this book without being compelled to do something for these lost little children.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 22, 2006

    A Moving Narrative

    If you are looking for a good read, I would suggest picking up this book.I loved the book so much I could hardly put it down! This book as it all: the funny moments that make you laugh aloud to the moments that just make you cry. Cindy Champnella captures her audience with the heart rendering tale of the passion and devotion Jaclyn has for her baby.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 28, 2006

    Incredible Story

    The realities of this child's life were vividly described by the author in a way that was at times heart-wrenching. However, this child's spirit was undaunted by all of it. It is a truly heart-warming story. This is the best adoption book I have read.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 3, 2006

    Must Read Book!

    Cindy Champnella¿s book The Waiting Child is about the pain-staking journey that Jaclyn takes to have her baby with her again. When Jaclyn is adopted she can only think of the pain that Xiao Mei Mei is going through in China. After pleading to her mom, Cindy, and God, the Champnella¿s decide that they have to adopt Xiao Mei Mei. When Cindy tells her sister Laura that they are going to adopt him, Laura has already started the adoption. The Waiting Child will grab the strings to your heart and pull from the very first page. If it doesn¿t hurt you then you must not have a heart at all. Champnella allows you to see the pain Jaclyn feels after her baby is taken from her through the eyes of the four year old. The book has received some negative reviews for being racist about China but I have to say that the book is about Jaclyn and how she feels. I would recommend The Waiting Child to anyone who has a heart and loves kids. This book truly shows how the faith and love of one orphan saves the life of another. The Waiting Child is a must read. --- J. VanValkenburg

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 5, 2004

    A mother of 3 adopted children from China.

    I feel that Cindy wrote this book for 2 reasons. One: Because she wanted her daughters story told. Two: Because we do not know what goes on in every orphanage in China. I feel I was very fortunate to have children from good orphanages, but, I can't say what went on behind closed doors. Jaclyn remembered the things that went on and Cindy told her story. Very well, I might add. This book will touch your heart even if it is not written as well as other might think it should be. If you are human at all and you need to clear out the old tear ducts, this is the book that you NEED to read. I have read many things that Cindy Champnella has written (newsletters for different agencies) and I think she does a wonderful job, for not being a professional writer. Thanks Cindy for a great book!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 3, 2003

    Good story, but could have been told better

    I had heard about 'The Waiting Child' from others who had read it. Their response was 'it was a little dark.' Having adopted an older child from China myself, I was interested in this mother's experiences. It didn't take me very long to decide that I didn't really care for the author's writing style -- sentence fragments, repetetive word usage, etc. Some of the text just didn't seem to flow. However, I was very touched by Jaclyn and her love for 'her baby'. It was a very sweet story, but I felt it could have been told more eloquently. I had a difficult time putting myself in the story because it lacked descriptive details that help pull the reader into the book. The author would often foreshadow an event or topic, but never come back to it in the book. The author did not paint a very good picture of orphanages or the Chinese people. Having been to China myself, I came away with a completely different opinion. I became somewhat dissinterested toward the middle of the book as it became very repetetive and didn't hold my interest. The ending was happy, but the final pages really seemed to say 'look what a great person I am for saving these children'. I think the editor and publisher could have worked with the author a little more to make this book outstanding. It definitely had the potential.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 27, 2003

    A Treasure Well Worth Reading

    "The Waiting Child" is a warmly sensitive, deeply insightful peek into the indomitable spirit of one incredibly precocious, fiercely tenacious child. Powerfully evocative writing tells the true story of four-year-old Jaclyn, who, once adopted, embarks on the impossible quest to also find a home for ¿her baby,¿--the child she cared for in the orphanage. This book is a celebration of the enduring power of love and will be treasured by anyone who has ever loved a child. But, be warned: to know Jaclyn is to enlarge your heart¿s capacity for love--forever.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 2, 2003

    Big Disappointment!

    I had heard about this book coming out for some time, so I bought it immediately. What a waste of money and time! The author is just promoting an agenda on adoption. The so-called "facts" seem very suspicious to me and smack of sentimental fiction. It had a happy ending, but the road there was boring and not worth the trip. Author does not seem to be a very accomplished writer either.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 5, 2003

    Love and faith

    A well written book about an incredible little girl. This is a book that I needed to have a box of kleenex next to me as I read. It was sad to read about the pain that such a little girl had to endure, but it helps you to understand the fighting personality and spunk she has. This story is a modern fairy tale of a little girl that won't give up her hope to have her Xiao Mei Mei join her in America. Although, this is a story of adoption, it is also much more, it tells the real meaning of love, faith and family. I read the book in a day, because I didn't want to put it down. What a refreshing story in a world full of materialism.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 10, 2003

    A MUST read!!!!

    I agree with the back cover quote on this book that says, 'Anyone whose heart isn't touched by this book should see a doctor!' It is an incredible story, beautifully wirtten. I had to put the book down several times and just hold it in my lap as my heart filled with emotion. This is a story for our time--the triumph of the spirit over incredible odds.This book and its message will endure for all time--thank you, Jaclyn!!!

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