FRANKFORT — Amy Compston began running when she was 11 years old and she’s never stopped.
But, along the way, the now 28-year-old mother of four and full-time nurse, nearly ran her life off the road. That she got back on it and where it’s taken her since then is her story, one inspiring enough that she was recognized Thursday by the Kentucky House of Representatives.
Compston was asked by a friend to go out for track in middle school and soon was running competitively for Greenup County High School. But three or four years later she was running with the wrong crowd.
“My mom was recently divorced and working fulltime and she wasn’t able to be around that much,” Compston said.
At 15, Compston swallowed and snorted 30 Xanax and awoke in the intensive care unit of a hospital “with tubes in every orifice.” Six months later she helped some friends wash down another batch of pills with whiskey and again awoke in the hospital.
Her mother enrolled her in a Christian counseling program. She went but she was often intoxicated.
Then came the car wreck. She suffered severe facial injuries but recovered. Somehow, she managed to get a nursing degree from Ashland Community and Technical College and get married.
Through all of it, she kept running. But she kept taking drugs, too.
She introduced her husband, Chris, to drugs. She’d stop somehow each time she became pregnant, but after the child was born “at the first opportunity” she’d return to drugs. Somehow she managed to hold down a job, attend church and raise a growing family while living a life of addiction.
“I was definitely living a double life, even a triple life,” Compston said. “My friends at church, my work friends, they knew that side of me, but they didn’t know the drug part of my life.”