Caroline Best was only 36 years old when doctors told her she only had a year to live. Her heroin addiction played the biggest part in that. Back when she was a teen, she did what so many other teens did and do… fell in with the wrong crowd. That peer pressure was tough. When they dared her to try heroin, she gave in and did it. She told herself she would just try it once… just to see what it was like. But right after that, she was hooked and could not break free from it. She started doing it more and more, and the next 20 years of her life would be a complete blur.
Family members gave up on her and cast her out, especially after she resorted to stealing from them to pay for her next fix. She did some stints in prison, and they tried to rehabilitate her. But as soon as she was set free, she reverted back to heroin. Sometimes, old habits are just hard to break away from. The last time she was in prison, she had a checkup just before her release, and the doctors there told her she would be dead in a year because of the damage she had done to her body.
She had sepsis, and endocarditis because it had penetrated her heart valve. It would take a very risky operation to save her, but no hospital would operate on her until she was completely drug free. She had to do it, but she didn’t know if she could.
But there was someone there waiting for Caroline when she got out of prison. It was Stuart Toogood. He was the police officer who had put her there for her latest theft. Caroline was shocked, but he told her that he could see that she was suffering and he wanted to help. He took her to what he understood was an extremely effective rehab facility. It would take her six months to get through. So with her life at stake, she went with Stuart instead of getting back out on the streets… the streets that would certainly take her life. It was a struggle but she completed the six-month program.
And afterwards, she had a checkup at a local hospital. Not only was Caroline now drug-free, but she no longer needed the operation; her body had somehow miraculously repaired itself. And now Caroline, who looks completely different, works at a facility to help others recover from their own heroin addiction.
Sometimes it takes being at the very bottom to find your way to the top.