Paula Deen*Paula Deen made her first public appearance since the lawsuit that accused her of workplace racism has died down and was quite emotional to say the least.

The audience gave Deen a standing ovation as she showed face at the Metro Cooking and Entertainment Show in Houston on Saturday.

The former Food Network star began sobbing and clutching a tissue in her hand, at the reception.

“These are tears of joy, y’all,” Deen said, according to the Houston Chronicle. “This is my first time out in three months.”

“I’ve said all along that the one place I’d want to make my first step back out is Texas,” she continued.

“Y’all’s hearts are as big as your state.”

As we all know, Deen was at the center of a public scandal in May after admitting in a deposition that she had used the n-word in the past. In the subsequent fallout, Deen lost her spot on the Food Network as well as several lucrative endorsement deals with Target, Sears, Walmart, Home Depot, and Kmart, among others.