G Aaron Rendell
I was born in Surrey, England, in the early 1980s. I have very few memories of that time, but I often wonder how different my life would have been had my family not emigrated to Ireland when I was four.
I grew up in the countryside on the outskirts of Athlone, a town with the population of 20,000, in the heart of Ireland.
With an odd accent that would draw unwanted attention during my school years, I would often withdraw in to my own world. It was hard to remain inconspicuous in primary school with twenty-eight children on the entire role-call. My class expanded to three people when I was ten years old. A boy in the year ahead got kept back.
I became quite introverted and my imagination began to grow.
Primary school had done nothing to prepare me for secondary school. My class alone had thirty people in it. My entire year had more than a hundred. You would be forgiven to think that I would welcome the crowd in which I could hide myself more easily. Unfortunately, I couldn't.
If it weren't for some of the teachers, my English teacher especially, I don't know if I would have made it. Secondary school is tough for anyone. I have no doubt that a lot of people have emotional wounds from that period. Unfortunately, this isn't something you realise until you're a lot older.
I began to miss a lot of time from school, through truancy and various embarrassing health-related reasons, the cause of which wasn't diagnosed until I was older.
When I left school, I hoped to return to the UK and join the RAF. I have always wanted to fly. I planned to work for a year in order to build up funds to be able to support the move.
Almost one year to the date that I had started working, I had my first serious, crippling encounter with Crohn's disease. It was September 10th 2001, the day before the attacks on the Twin Towers in New York. Everyone remembers where they were the day the Western World was changed. I was lying in a hospital bed, unable to move without pain.
I spent the next four years in and out of hospital on a regular basis. My partner, Roo, stood by me the whole time, for which I am eternally grateful.
In 2005, I had surgery to remove a section of my intestines, which effectively relieved me of the majority of the symptoms of the Crohn's. I have a four inch long scar, and a displaced bellybutton as a reminder. Alongside this scar, a star-shaped scar on my right side, and another four inch long scar from 2001 where they initially thought I was in need of an appendectomy; scars from the battle I waged with the disease. Thankfully, my only complaint in regards to Crohn's now is that I haven't been swimming since 2005 because of these scars. I was one of the lucky ones.
I know it can come back at any time, but I vow to never let it win. I haven't had pork in nine years, and when I eat an apple, I eat it thoroughly. Luck plays its part, but keeping positive has a major influence too. For anyone out there that is suffering from Crohn's, please know that it does get better. Stay strong.
In 2007, I chased my dream of becoming a pilot. I successfully completed training on two types of helicopters, the R22 and the R44. Unfortunately, a technicality with my history of Crohn's rendered my licence invalid.
I have had an assortment of jobs over the years, mainly menial tasks where, again, my imagination was working overtime to keep me occupied. These jobs ranged from warehouse work, to taxi driver, to hotel receptionist, to welder. I knew that I had to give my mind a release by putting pen to paper.
I currently reside in Northamptonshire, UK, with the love of my life, Roo, and our border collie, Cooper. Both inspire me to no end.
Writing has long been my passion, and I hope to chase it as my future career in order to provide them both with the life that they deserve.
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by G Aaron Rendell
Waking up in a nightmarish world with no memories of who she is, Seraphim must fight for her survival. A virus has decimated the population. Seraphim is mere miles from ground zero. Infected roam the area, driven by the virus, searching for new hosts. Seraphim must learn to trust her fellow survivors, but more importantly, she must learn to trust her own instincts.
by G Aaron Rendell
Six years after a chemical attack destroyed their normal way of life, Sera must now fight to defend the life she has rebuilt. A virus has taken hold of the human population. Herds of infected roam the countryside, but Sera soon learns that it is the ones that aren't infected that pose the most danger.
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