2 – Depression

I was diagnosed with Crohn’s Disease while in 6th Form, in 2002. At the time, I had emergency surgery; a resection of my small intestine. I was in hospital for several weeks, and it took me several months to recover. It forced me to miss my A-Level exams, and meant that I had to wait an extra year before I could complete my studies. But for the next 12 years, it stayed largely dormant. I was able to work, travel and live as normal, being admitted into hospital only twice, for short durations. 

However, my condition then worsened and I experienced a prolonged flare-up until 2017, when I ended up in hospital again.

After my first surgery as a teenager, when I discovered I had Crohn’s Disease, I picked myself up again and life began to look very promising. I went on to graduate from one of the world’s leading universities, and I was even elected as the student union president of my campus.

I entered the profession of journalism, but after establishing myself in my professional field, I became disillusioned with my career. I began my professional life as a reporter because I wanted to make changes in society, but I found myself writing about things that I had no interest in, and in niches that I had no passion for.

I felt unable to express my own true voice, and was being used as a mouthpiece for corporations. The things that mattered to me; oppression, exploitation, spirituality and self-discovery, had no place on my editorial agenda.

Instead, I focused on very materialistic issues; profit and loss accounts, redundancies, new product launches and marketing campaigns, and I became a materialistic person in the process.

I was using alcohol and drugs to cope with my troubles, and this only made my health issues much worse. I couldn’t find happiness in my work or my personal life, and my disease started becoming serious again around 2014.

I was forced to quit my job in London as a business journalist, and spend time focusing on my recovery. 

My life had wore me down and I had become angry, over-sensitive and restless, and I also began to feel that my life had become mundane and meaningless.

On the face of it, I was living the life that I had dreamed of. I was an international journalist working for world leading publishing houses, travelling extensively to luxury, exotic locations. I became an expert in technology business journalism and I was living on my own, in a flat in a trendy part of London.

However, I had become lonely and depressed living in isolation, and as my symptoms were getting worse, I was prescribed a steroid called Prednisone, which caused major mood swings. I was also using drugs and drinking alcohol heavily, in pubs and bars with friends, and also at press networking events where free drinks available throughout the evening. The combination of heavy drinking, drugs and steroids was dangerous, and nearly proved to be fatal.

I was even angry that I had allowed myself to reach this point. My mood swings, compounded with the loneliness and the disappointment that I had in my life, sent me into a state of depression. It culminated in an overwhelming feeling of self-destruction.

I became suicidal, and tried to kill the person that I had become.