LIMA — William Miller never had any intention of getting hooked on heroin.
He loves his children, valued his freedom and was a working man.
“I just figured I would use it here and there,” Miller said. “I went from snorting it to shooting.”
But the drug he tried when a friend offered took over. Before that, occasionally smoking marijuana and alcohol was all he had done.
“Someone offered it to me, and I used it and got hooked. You keep using it because you don’t want to go through the pain of the withdraws,” he said.
In four months, Miller began serving 30 days in jail, which helped him get clean before going to prison for a positive drug test. His fiancée, who he helped start using, also went to prison.
Miller hit rock bottom.
“It will grab ahold of you and not let go until you’re almost to rock bottom or dead,” Miller said. “It will control everything in your life. It’s not worth losing your family over or your life.”
Miller nearly died when he overdosed and was in the hospital during his addiction. He then realized it was time to get help.
His jail sentence out of Lima Municipal Court for driving with a suspended license, when he was caught on his way to pick up heroin, helped dry him out. It also gave him time to think and get into rehab programs.
“I can honest say my kids is what got me to snap out of it,” he said. “That snapped my brain out of selfish mode.”
He also is thankful he has a family to support him and return to, which gave him hope.
“I had a picture of my kids. That was my support system, my drive, my goal to work for,” he said. “I hit rock bottom. I guess you could say I had somewhat of a cushion when I hit rock bottom because I still had a family with support. Some people don’t have family.”
The last six months in prison left him with a lot of time to think, too.
“It’s that emotional bond between you and your family that is broke when you’re gone that hurts more than being locked up,” he said.
The 29-year-old Miller was released from prison Tuesday and has six months in a local residential re-entry program before he can live on his own. After that, he has to show he can keep clean and not have a positive drug test. He must maintain a job to support his 3-year-old son and 1-year-old daughter in order to get them back. For now, he has supervised visits.
He’s just taking it a day at a time, committed to staying clean.
“All my goals are set in place to stay clean for myself, No. 1, and my kids, No. 2, and to get my kids back home where they belong,” he said.
Reach Greg Sowinski at 567-242-0464 or on Twitter @Lima_Sowinski.