Lee took his first drink at 12 and was first diagnosed with alcohol poisoning at 20.
“I used to walk down the street with plenty of drink in me,” said Lee Bailey, a current Mel Trotter Ministries guest. “And I was terrified. I could go weeks without drinking, but then I’d fall and find myself underneath a bridge. I knew I could come to Mel Trotter. Every time I relapsed. Every time I did something bad. I could always come here.”
Lee is currently in Mel Trotter Ministries’ Pilgrimage Program. He has been sober for four months. The longest stretch of sobriety that he can recall. “I can’t say enough about the nurses and all the staff here,” said Lee. “They’re the only ones that believed I could change. I got my memory back. I got hope. I just take it day by day.”
Lee wakes up at 5am every morning and walks the streets of downtown Grand Rapids. He sees and visits with a lot of the men and women that he used to hang around with, the men and women he still calls friends.
“I used to drink every day. I’d use prescription drugs, take diet pills. I’d smoke crack, coke, and weed,” continued Lee. “So I can talk to these guys. I can show them they can choose differently, you know? I just talk to them. They want to know people care. When they feel weak, I help them be strong. That’s what Mel Trotter Ministries does for me too.”
What advice does Lee give to his friends struggling with addiction?
“I tell them to give Jesus a try,” said Lee. “It’ll fit. They may not know it yet, and some may know it but are still unsure how it will change them. But Jesus, man. He’ll change everything for you if you let him.”
About Lee: Lee currently volunteers in our PI unit every day and in our Food Pantry every Thursday. He meets with his AA group regularly, participates in Bible Study, and partners with his Advocate, Ben, to reach other men struggling with addiction. Lee is currently looking for housing and a part-time job.