Joy’s Story

Joy was born to a family in Taiwan who was unable to provide care for her. Because of Joy’s special needs, domestic adoption became elusive, causing her to wait for 14 years for her forever family. The waiting compounded the trauma Joy had experienced.

Meanwhile, God was moving in the hearts of a family on the other side of the world. This family was the Buckley family, who already had three little girls. One of the girls was adopted from China six years prior. After praying over children on the waiting child list, they felt led to pursue Joy. They completed paperwork, continued to pray, and waited for over two years to adopt Joy. During this time, the Buckleys received new information about Joy, because her emotional needs had become more of an unknown. Despite these new uncertainties, the Buckleys still felt called to pursue Joy. Finally, Mrs. Buckley traveled with one of her daughters and their Lifeline caseworker, in the middle of a global pandemic, to bring Joy home. Upon arriving in Taiwan in late 2020, Mrs. Buckley, her daughter, and their Lifeline caseworker had to quarantine in Taiwan for 15 days. When they finished their quarantine and met Joy, her traumatic past caused her to push away from the love and comfort Mrs. Buckley provided. She was distant and guarded.

After Mrs. Buckley and her two daughters arrived home, the challenges persisted and elevated. The Buckley family ended up in the emergency room with Joy soon after her arrival home due to a psychological episode. Fearful and confused about the cause of these episodes, the Buckley family sought gospel-centered friends and professionals to support them. Their Lifeline caseworker walked with them through every step of their long journey with Joy. They continued to obediently follow the desire to pursue Joy that the Lord had laid on their hearts long ago. The Buckleys remained determined to both meet Joy where she was and to help her break down the walls that prevented her from attaching.  After a year of perseverance, Joy has begun to understand that the Buckleys are her family, that they love her, and that she is safe.