A cancer survivor who beat the odds to defeat the disease has recalled how he walked in on his girlfriend ‘cheating’ on him months after leaving hospital.
Tom Garrod was was told he had three days to live after being diagnosed with aggressive stage four testicular cancer in 2004.
Doctors told him the harrowing news but refusing to give up, he quickly underwent treatment including chemotherapy and steroids.
He told MyLondon his story and even after leaving hospital, life wasn’t straight forward – especially when he returned home early one day.
Tom says having his heart broken was worse than being told his time was nearly up.
He said returning to his flat to witness the betrayal sent him into a downward spiral and he attempted to take his own life for a second time that year.
He said: “I just felt so shocked. I honestly felt worse being cheated on than I did when I got my cancer diagnosis.
“I found out it had been happening the whole time.
“The cancer was out of my control, but with this I kept thinking, ‘was it me?’, did I do something wrong?
“After that, I lived with my sister for a bit and I started drinking and smoking a lot. I really just didn’t want to be here. It was a really dark time and I was constantly low and depressed.
“But then something clicked. I don’t know what happened, but I just remember sitting on a window ledge, putting my cigarette out and thinking ‘enough is enough’.”
Tom, who is now 44, has suffered with health complications since childhood, when at just 20 months old, he was diagnosed with post-viral Encephalitis – an inflammation of the brain.
He has found love again with new girlfriend, Naheed.
Not only that, but his life is now in the fast lane – Tom ran the length of Wales twice this year in aid of Kings College Hospital.
He says that he still recalls how isolating it felt when he was going through the cancer treatment, and that’s why he wanted to run part of the journey himself.
Tom added: “You never know what anyone else is going through. Just be nice to people because you don’t know what other people are going through. But everyone is on this world for a reason.
“I still have bad days and I still feel down some times, but I think that’s the same for most people.”