I think each of us has to put our disease into a context that works in our head. To find words to describe something that really cannot be defined. We, each of us, come into our situation with previous baggage, and we apply what we know to this strange, unknown thing we are all dealing with.
For some, the battlefield metaphors work--I would think they are particularly apt for those with high risk cases--where the fight for every day of life "after" is real and ongoing. To you guys, I can observe, I can help as I am able, but at a certain level I really can't relate. Yes, we have the same disease, but no, in another way, we don't.
For me, I do prefer the perspective that I have a Disease. In fact, I've had the "big C" diagnosed in my body twice now. Both times, however, I chose a treatment, and except for regular checks to make sure it's not reappearing, I can call myself cured. I'm not a survivor, for to be a survivor, one has to be a victim first. I did not choose this disease, a combination of factors gave it to me. None of us chose it. No one ever woke up one morning and said, "I think I'll see what I can do to make sure I develop cancer".
I have all the respect in the world for those who are, and who have, struggled mightily with cancers. For many, the fact that they are alive at all 5 years, 10 years, or longer after diagnosis is amazing. For those, I see one common trait that we see in our friend Todd: An embrace of life, and living to the fullest because of the realization that in truth, Today, Now, is all any of us have. And I can learn from that attitude.
Guilt? No. Discomfort with the labels that others would display on us? Yeah.
Age at Diagnosis: 56
Biopsy: 3 of 12, G3+3, all on LT side, 20%, 5%, 3%
Clinical Stage T2C
Bone Scan, CT scan negative for spread
RALP on 2/17/15, BJC St. Louis, Dr. Figenshau
58.5g, G3+4, 20%, 4 quadrants involved
PSA 3/10/15: 0.10
My Story: www.healingwell.com/community/default.aspx?f=35&m=3300024