Recovering addict turns addiction into story of inspiration

Posted: 10:09 AM, Feb 14, 2017
Updated: 2017-02-14 10:09:17-05

At her lowest point, 35-year-old Briana Chablis had lost it all. Her car, her job, even her daughter, all because of her heroin addiction.

Chablis was first offered heroin by a friend more than a decade ago.

"Until you've done it, you don't understand that you do it again, you're going to do it again,” she said.

She was only 18, but heroin knows no age and really sees no limits as to the power it can use to destroy lives.

“I felt so relaxed and, I mean, the feeling of the euphoria and, I mean, it was unlike anything I'd ever experienced before,” she said.

Her struggle is a mirror image of so many who are suffering, fighting to beat their addiction, and stay alive. Chablis would get clean, then relapse, get clean again, and then somehow find herself back in the dark place she was before.

She went in and out of detox roughly 30 times over 11 years. During her decade of struggle, she even lost custody of her daughter, who was given to her mother, her family unable to allow her to raise her daughter while using heroin.

“I tried to kill myself several times and it didn't work and I was like ok, if I have to be here, apparently God's not letting me leave, I'm still here, if I have to be here and I'm not dying then this can't be like this anymore,” said Chablis.

Today though, Chablis is a voice of hope and pulling those that are in the same place she was years ago, out of an endless cycle of use.

She's given speeches, she volunteers at a local rehabilitation facility, and is so passionate about the fight to end the heroin addiction, she's even testified at the Ohio statehouse to help pass a bill to reduce access and distribution of prescription opioids, for many, opioids are the gateway to heroin addiction.

Years later, after all of her own struggle, Chablis is now a source of encouragement for those who have nothing left.

“We have to have people that are willing to reach out and give back,” she said.

Governor John Kasich signed the bill restricting access to prescription drugs into law earlier in 2017. Chablis is credited with playing a part in getting it passed.