CLARKSBURG, W.Va. – It’s a special celebration for the Clarksburg Mission’s Sober Living Homes. Three people are graduating from the program—the most they’ve ever had at the same time.
Payden Michael, Brittany Miles and Chance Ward gathered with their friends and family to commemorate their time at the house.
“Honestly, I was real bad on drugs, and I had a federal case,” Chance admits, “I went to jail, and then form jail I went to Bob Mays here in Clarksburg, and I spent like 92 days there, and came here February sixth of last year. And this is where my whole recovery, my whole foundations came from here. This place really saved my life.”
The sober living homes helped Brittany attain a GED and Chance get back her ID. Now, Brittany and Chance will be getting their own apartment and have enrolled in college.
“I’m very nervous, but I know that I’ll be ok,” said Chance, “When I go out on my own, I know the things that I need to do, like the coping skills. If I’m getting triggered or want to use or something, I know that I have phone numbers here that I can call, and then other people out in the recovery community that will be there for me if I need somebody.”
The sober living homes prides itself in building a recovery community. The welcoming atmosphere they try to uphold becomes family for people who might not have the support from their biological family.
“I don’t have a whole lot of family,” said Brittany, “So, everybody in this room became my family.”
The process also strives on reconnecting people with their family, as Payden was reconnected with his daughter, Ava.
“We live in Parsons, and there’s no place like this there,” said Payden’s mom, “It has not only made him a better person, it’s made him a better son. It’s made him a better father.”
In order to get into the sober living homes, they require a 28 day treatment center and an application process. Payden said when he was going through the interview process, it was the first time in a long time that somebody said they would take a chance on him.
“I was just tired. I was tired of waking up and having more charges. I was tired of waking up in the hospital. I was tired of being sick. Losing jobs. Getting suspended from jobs and basically burning every bridge that I ever had,” said Payden, “It got to the point where it didn’t work getting high or getting drunk. I couldn’t even numb that pain. It was too much to bear at that point.”
After graduating, Payden said he wants to continue to support the program by being the assistant house manager. All three graduates say they are grateful for their experience at the sober living home.
“I just want to thank the mission and these houses and Andy Bailey because they’ve really saved my life, for real,” said Chance, “This has been an experience that I’ll never forget and this has been something that has helped me find my voice.”