Saving "Grace" for drug addicts - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Saving "Grace" for drug addicts

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March 23, 2004

Albany-- Many families struggle with loved ones addicted to drugs or alcohol.

The road to recovery is tough and for some it's nearly impossible. But, there is a new path to recovery and those leading the way have been down that road before.

Christy Toller is 23-years-old, a mother of a 2-year-old son, and a recovering drug addict, "I was on drugs real bad. Methamphetamine."

She was just 17 when she started using drugs--and if she was still using today, she doesn't think she would be alive. "I really don't. If I would I would be in prison today."

Instead of prison, Christy is at Grace Way Recovery Residence in Albany.

Most of the women are not placed in Grace Way by the courts, but instead enroll because they've hit rock bottom. Toller says, "I got sick and tired of being sick and tired. I wanted my son in my life. I wanted him back, and I wanted to be a mother to him, and I wasn't a mother to him before."

Peggy Bryant knows first-hand about recovering from drug addiction, "I was tired, and I was willing, and I was willing to do anything they say do, and that is what I did, and I have not relapsed, yet. They always say to put that 'yet' behind it, you know."

Peggy is not a resident here--she is the director. She is 18 years sober and is helping other women, like Christy, realize they too can live without drugs. Christy says, "I've done really well, I have learned a lot. Grace Way has taught me how to live again through the staff."

Now, Christy is enrolled in Darton, she is working, and she is drug free.

Grace Way is less than seven months old. The Recovery Residence was founded by an Albany woman who is recovering from drug addition.

Grace Way survives solely on donations. It is one of the few non-profit, all-women's drug recovery homes south of Atlanta.

Posted at 5:43 p.m. by melissa.kill@walb.com