23 MarJoseph’s story.


From the first moment Joseph came to Butterfly Home, he grabbed hold of our hearts and has never let go.


Joseph arrived at a challenging time. We had lost some of our dearly loved children in previous months and Grief was heavy on our shoulders. We had other children struggling with complex health issues. As they faced setback after setback, Worry and Fear climbed up there to keep Grief company – it was getting crowded on our shoulders, and the burden felt heavy.


Joseph’s arrival was just what our souls needed during that hard season. We can’t quite explain it, but he brought his own brand of magic. His infectious glee and sweet loving spirit helped loosen the grip that Worry, Fear and Grief had taken. His smile reminded us that life is good, and helped Healing and Refreshment seep into our hearts. One sunshiny little boy helped us all take a deep breath and regroup, stepping into this precious work with new energy and trust. That can happen sometimes – circumstances take the wind from your sails, but sweet angels arrive unexpectedly and restore your courage.

Butterfly Children's Hospices Trustees

Joseph was our sweet angel, but we knew it wouldn’t be for long. He arrived for short-term care before surgery. His procedure was expected to be routine, so the plan was for him to return to the SWI afterwards. In the winter,  he left us to travel to Shanghai for surgery. It was a time of mixed emotions – happiness that Joseph would now be healthy, sadness that he wouldn’t be coming home to us.


Except he did come home to us….. Joseph didn’t react to his surgery as planned, and developed complications. He stayed in Shanghai a very long time, finally returning to the SWI many months later. There, it was quickly decided that he needed to be in Butterfly Home. His complications made it more difficult to operate again – so difficult that many suggested Joseph was now inoperable.


So yes – he came home to us, and we joyfully  welcomed him, but grieved at the same time. Our lovely angel boy was facing a closed door – surely there had to be another option.


I’m sure that you can guess – there was certainly another option. We’re so grateful to our supporters who rallied immediately with funds and encouragement, and to the surgeons who were willing to give Joseph another chance. You can find out more of the story on previous blogs – but here’s a summary: Joseph had surgery again, recovered, and is now concentrating on important things like learning to walk and feed himself. And perhaps some medical training in there as well.

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He’s taking to walking very well, thank you, and is now progressing to running – EVERYWHERE. His ayis are very proud of him, but sometimes a little exhausted. He still has magical powers to spread happiness. He’s brave, sometimes silly, and he often pokes out his tongue when he is concentrating. He likes cake, he loves people, and he’s a joy to be around. He has started speech therapy now, as his language is a little delayed – we think that’s partially due to the many changes in his life, and the long period he spent away after his first surgery. We know this kid is going to rock speech therapy. And we know he’s going to rock the next part of his story – the part about a family.

Joseph needs the right family to see his gorgeous eyes and crinkly smile and know that this is their boy! We can tell you this – Joseph’s new family will be blessed to have this wonderful son. If you think that could be you, or someone you know – here’s the place to contact: superkids@gladney.org





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3 comment

  1. Cas on: March 24, 2017 at 12:54 pm

    What a lovely wee boy – hope you find your family soon. I love the Doctor picture!

    1. Fiona on: April 3, 2017 at 7:47 am

      He has great role models in the medical field!

  2. Melissa on: April 12, 2017 at 1:45 am

    What an incredible story! How amazing that you guys sought more treatment and collected the needed funds for him!!

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