Friday, August 1, 2008

Three Little Words - Inspirational Book About Foster Care

May I recommend an extraordinary book:

Ashley Rhodes-Courter was three years old when the state of Florida removed her from her mother's home. Nine years, fourteen foster homes and two group homes later, Ashley was adopted at the age of twelve.

Three Little Words is intended for young adults but resonates far beyond that age group. Ashley is plucky, smart, and aware. Unlike most children who might cower in the face of overwhelming odds, she talks and keeps talking to anyone who will listen to her tales of one abusive foster mother. She's determined to make sure everyone knows the Mosses' are not what they profess to be. No matter the obstacles, she clings to her love of learning, her longing for her mother, and her desire to protect her little brother, Luke.

Ashley's life is inspiring. She was meant for bigger things. She was meant to be heard. After Ashley won a Harry Potter essay contest, JK Rowling predicted she'd go far because she'd already over come so much. First Lady Hillary Clinton heard about Ashley's winning piece and mentioned it in a television interview. Later, Ashley met the First Lady and President Clinton.

Three Little Words began as an essay that ran in New York Times Magazine. Just a hint to the reader...the "three little words" are not the ones you think, which makes Ashley's story all the more powerful.

As a former foster mother and the author of a memoir about my experience, I am in genuine awe of Ashley, her accomplishments, and the manner in which she embraces life. I thought of my foster daughter, Sandy, when I read Ashley's words. I wonder if Sandy felt the same intense loyalty to the parents who tossed her out...if I'm honest with myself I know the answer. I'm sure she did.

I don't think my husband and I were ever as wise as the couple who adopted Ashley but I know I tried very hard and did the best I knew how. I'm glad there are children like Ashley, who in spite of the system, are thriving and happy people. Thanks to a handful of adults who devoted themselves to her welfare and in defiance of the foster parents who abused or dismissed her, she is an incredible person and talented writer. Someday it would be a pleasure to meet her. After, reading her story, I feel like I already have.

5 comments:

Kal said...

Hi Lisa

It has been awhile since I have checked in. Hope your summer is going well! Thank you for sharing that book. God bless Ashley for coming such a long way.

thewishfulwriter said...

I can not wait to read this book. I just added it to my Amazon list. Thanks for the introduction.

In other news, I just signed up to attend a writing seminar with Hollis Gillespie! I'm peeing my pants. No joke.

Lisa McGlaun said...

Heather!!!

I'm so excited for you! I want to go! Tell her she has a big fan in Las Vegas.

Thanks for the comment,
Lisa

Lisa McGlaun said...

Kali,

It's good to hear from you. I hope things are going well in your part of the country. It is a great book and a fast read. You'll enjoy it.

Hugs,
Lisa

Anonymous said...

...please where can I buy a unicorn?