Dug in Deep

Thesis countdown, 11 days.

I’m dug in deep to the piece I’m working on…my essay’s a mess, but the topic is fascinating to me. It has to do with the meaning and the additional connotation that are carried by the word “survivor.” How there is a sense not just that a survivor happens to survive, but that perhaps he or she has some innate qualities which contribute to that survival…
I’ve found that a number of books have been written on the subject…The Survival Personality, Al Siebert, Survival Psychology by John Leach and Deep Survival, by Laurence Gonzales…

And of course, since it’s a cancer thesis, everything leads back to cancer…In the essay I explore the pros and cons of applying survivor “submeaning” ie. that there is a “survivor personality” to cancer…i.e. Lance Armstrong’s statement “not a cancer victim, but a cancer survivor, hell bent on living strong.” And of course I discovered there is a whole different discussion about “cancer survivor” in the cancer community…So I’ve also been plowing through a number of articles in medical journals and trying to research cancer survivors.

Last night I set the writing aside and picked up Lance Armstrong’s memoir, It’s Not About the Bike. He wrote it really soon after his cancer…only three years, I guess when you’re a celebrity you have to strike while the iron’s hot. Occasionally he’d say something and I wondered what his take would be now, I don’t know if I mean past the cancer, or just life years. We’re about the same age–he would have been 28 or 29 when he wrote the book and I guess I could feel that a little bit,…but still it well written (he had a co-writer)and interesting…riveting actually, I read in all in one sitting, which means I finished at about 3AM. And it made me interested in biking, which I have never paid much attention too.

I’ve been panicking over this essay all weekend because it’s way overdue but just talked to my thesis advisor, and it turns out she’s on a deadline too and actually won’t be able to read until tomorrow afternoon…so with all that time bought, I’m going to go pick up another book reference I’ve been waiting on interlibrary loan…and maybe I’ll go wild and hit the gym. woo hoo!

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