Thursday, July 05, 2007

BLOG OFF FOR BREAST CANCER V2.0 --SURVIVOR

I am sure we could all come up with our own definitions of the word survivor. Definitions that go beyond what the dictionary says, definitions that we have all formed in our own minds and hearts for various reasons. When I sat here thinking about what the word survivor meant to me on a personal level, over and over again two things kept coming to my mind--cancer and Lance Armstrong. Maybe because cancer means something to me personally. Maybe it is because the whole point of this blog off is to raise money for breast cancer. Or maybe it is because recently I have come across a new friend in the blogging world who is currently fighting her own battle with brain cancer.
Dictionary.com defines the word survivor as this...
1. a person or thing that survives.
2. Law. the one of two or more designated persons, as joint tenants or others having a joint interest, who outlives the other or others.
3. a person who continues to function or prosper in spite of opposition, hardship, or setbacks.
This got me to thinking about the word on some deeper levels. Take my mum for example. She lost her battle with cancer at 49 years old, so does that mean she wasn't a survivor in any way? Cancer took her life but it never took away her desire to beat it. In my definition she WAS a survivor for the simple reason that she so badly wanted to be one. She fought everyday with all she had to overcome it. She never gave up, but her body did. She would have stayed and fought but her body had nothing left to give. She had the heart and the mind of a survivor. Cancer couldn't take that from her. It couldn't take her spirit and it will never take away who she was and all the things so many people learned from her. Those things in my mind make her a survivor. I didn't know Courtney's mom but I would guess that by the same definition she was also a survivor. Is the sole reason Lance Armstrong is considered a survivor because he fought cancer and beat it? Would he be any less of a survivor if he had fought the way he did but still lost the battle? What made him a survivor to me was how he fought the disease. In his heart and mind he was a survivor and he believed that with all he had. He pushed his body to limits most of us could never dream of. To me--that makes him a survivor. If someone competes in the Olympics and falls short of the gold even though they gave it all they had does that make them a loser? They might not have the gold, but I would think in their hearts and the hearts of those around them who loved them and cheered them on they are still a winner because they gave it their all.
Another person that comes to my mind as I write this post is Heather from Especially Heather. Heather is a young mother and wife who is currently battling brain cancer. In my opinion, no matter what happens here on out for Heather and her family she IS a survivor. Her determination to beat her cancer so she can watch her kids grow up and grow old with her husband makes her a survivor to me. Her mindset and her faith in God makes her a survivor. Who are we to take that title away from her or anyone in her position?
Whatever your definition of survivor is I hope that when your face hardships in your own life you find a way to make an example of it and be a survivor. I hope that you will always overcome and that you never let yourself be any less than someone who fought to come out on top no matter what the circumstances.
This was a post for the blog off for breast cancer. If you would like to make a donation to this great cause, please click on the banner below and leave Courtney a few bucks.

14 comments:

Especially Heather said...

Thank you so much, Evey... You really made my day!

Jason said...

Wow, what a powerful post!

courtney said...

It depends on the day whether I call my mom a survivor or not. Most days, yes, but at the same time- she didn't survive. A fighter- absolutely 100%. But I like to think she was a survivor. She didn't give up at all.

Andrea said...

Very nice, as always, Evey!

QueenieCarly said...

As usual, great job, my girl. I think you really hit on a major contributor to surviving or being a survivor: mindset. Our minds so often inhibit us. What I wonder is what is it in those who do survive that gives them that strength. Is surviving a decision, or is it an ability you either have or you don't.

I don't know about you, but this word really opened up as I started to read all the posts people have done. I think it's a much more loaded word now, for me, than it was when I first looked at it.

C~ said...

"She had the heart and the mind of a survivor. Cancer couldn't take that from her."

That's what I'm talking about. The heart and the mind. Well, said...as usual! :D

Evey said...

Ok so none of you noticed my spelling mistake? Cause if you did and didn't tell me there will be hell to pay;)

Jamie Dawn said...

What an inspiring post.
A person's body eventually dies at some time, but great people's legacies live on in the memories of all those who knew them and loved them.
They survive.
I realize we all die, but when cancer steals the life from someone, it makes me so angry. I've lost several relatives on both sides of my family to cancer, so I have a strong family history of the disease.
It will be a great day when we can cure all types of cancer!!!!

Vegas Princess said...

Once again you manage to say it in such a way that I start thinking about things in a different light. Carly is right. This word has opened the floodgates to us and really stretched our creative minds in different directions. Not only are we learning a lot about each other and our stories of surviving, but also in how we all view the world a bit differently. I love it!

I also think everyone else is blowing my butt out fo the water...

Sketti said...

Great post hun! (Sorry it's taken me so long to comment but I couldn't seem to stop the page from refreshing...I think I've figured it out...press CTRL and then the link and then the yes button...well, seemed to work this time!) Well done, especially considering the lack of time you had to write it (btw...I just got your email yesterday at 5:30pm...and no i didn't see your spelling mistake!) Love you x

Diane said...

I agree about your mum being a survivor and its about how the person deals with the disease. It reminds me of a guy I worked with who had skin cancer. He spent his last few months talking about sun protection, raising money for a carers unit for our new hospital and making a difference. Instead of having a wake for him, he requested a fundraiser before he died. I remember him speaking at it, saying that we're all terminal, he was just more terminal than others. Amazing guy, and through his inspiration, $12000 was raised for the carers unit (providing accommodation to wives/husbands/families who had to travel miles for cancer treatment)

Eternity said...

This part really struck me.

"Her determination to beat her cancer so she can watch her kids grow up and grow old with her husband makes her a survivor to me. Her mindset and her faith in God makes her a survivor. Who are we to take that title away from her or anyone in her position?"

Absolutely. Determination is a huge part of being a survivor. If you aren't determined you won't be able to hold on. And God is so amazing-- He can make a survivor out of anyone who has the faith that He can do that for them. Nice post.

tarsi210 said...

A very nice job, indeed. I'm very glad you mentioned two "normal" people in addition to your celebrity. So often we hear only about those people who are famous and fighting a disease or a great issue in their life, when there are hundreds and thousands of other "normal" people who are just as deserving of the accolades of being a survivor and a fighter, but don't get media mention. Thanks very much! -- Nathan (PhilosYphia)

Lynn said...

nice tribute