i am trying to understand the language we have built around cancer. first, when exactly do i become a survivor? and am i surviving cancer or cancer treatment?
and then there are the words "fight" and "battle," as in "she is fighting cancer."
i think we use words like this because it sounds noble to be "battling" or "fighting" cancer, and gives the impression that we have some control. when, really, we have none. in fact, i have never been so passive in my life as i have throughout this experience. all i do is what i am told to do. other people, you could say, are "fighting" my cancer for me, but i am pretty much just lying there, often literally.
"in submissive acquiescense, she showed up for whatever horrible treatment was recommended" somehow just doesn't sound as good.