Everton's James McFadden admits he had concerns for his future when a knee injury sidelined him earlier this year.
"I was training in March and then broke down again and, when I spoke to the surgeon, he said my time might be up. That was hard to take," he said.
McFadden played his first match in 13 months in a reserve game on Tuesday.
McFadden had been without a club since Birmingham opted not to renew his contract in the summer following their relegation from the Premier League.
He had offers from Wolves and Celtic but chose to rejoin the club for whom he played 109 games between 2003 and 2008.
"I am coming here to get fit, get playing and try to enjoy my football and hopefully secure a longer-term contract," he said of his return to Goodison.
"The manager asked me to come in and help because they were short on numbers and, if that was not the case, maybe this wouldn't be happening.
"It is up to me to grab the chance and to show a bit of faith in the manager and show the fans I am good enough to play for Everton again.
"It was really hard mentally trying to come to terms with not even playing in the foreseeable future.
"I didn't watch a lot of football last year because of it, but I knuckled down and worked hard on my rehabilitation.
"Hopefully, in the next couple of months, I'll see the benefits of the hard work I have put in in the gym in the last 13 months."
He had trained with Wolves before receiving an offer, while Celtic had also wanted him to prove himself on trial.
"There were a couple of offers, but there was some messing about and Everton came in and made a proper offer," he added.