Okay, so a little while ago I posted about our foster daughter Ashlee. She's 19 years old, 20 in November and she's still in the state's program. She's improved signifigantly since she's lived with us, and I'm not bragging when I say that, but it's a testimony that a little love can go a long long way! It's really sad that at age 18 she didn't know how to take a shower, brush her teeth correctly, count money, make decisions for herself....stuff that we all take for granted, she didn't know because she'd never been taught. In the year and a half that she's lived with us, I've seen her go from a self-consious, un-loved, un-wanted follower to a woman with self-esteem, the knowledge that people love and care for her and the feeling of being a part of a family....something she'd never had her whole life. Tea is an amazing woman...I know if you've read some of my past posts you will know how much I love and respect her. She was the main person who made a difference in Ashlee's life. She loves Ashlee like she's her own daughter and treats her like that. Just as an example of how much Tea loves her, a little while back the state came and told us that they were taking Ashlee out of our house and that they would get her her own apartment because she needed to be independent. Tea was so sad.... not because we didn't want to see her be independent, but because we know she's not quite ready for such a huge step. We were afraid that she wouldn't be able to survive, or that her mom would find her and she'd go back to the life that got her into the program in the first place. Well, Tea offered the state for her to stay here and rent her room from us...the state said no, they couldn't do that but before she left she had to have her own job and be making her own money. We had been taking her around everywhere to apply for jobs and nothing was panning out. The state refered her to a program called VocRehab, what they do is specialize in helping people in the state's custody find jobs. They do a bunch of testing to see what qualifications they have, or if they are even qualified for the working world. Well, Tea took her to several testing appointments and a few weeks later we got a letter in the mail saying that Ashlee would be unable to work because she was 'mentally retarded' (that was the exact words on the letter), by stating that in the letter, they were telling us that they would no longer help her try to find a job. Needless to say, the state took back their decision and told us she would be staying here until she found a job. Well the reason for this post is because Ashlee got a job, and it's the perfect job for her!! She's working at Little Ceasars Pizza as the sign holder.... she's making her own money, she has a set schedule every week and it's easy work. She's happy, the state's happy and we're happy and proud of her. By her getting a job, we know it means the state will probably come in anytime and take her out. At least if it does happen she'll leave a better person than when she came here. And she knows she'll always be welcome to come back and visit.