Words of power
It’s early; the ol’ brain is barely beginning to fire, but the ones that come right to mind for me are:
Words have power. They shape our world, whether we think about it or not. Amorphous or regimented, they make each of us unique, and their meanings have influence in our lives. They’re mysterious, beautiful … insidious.
I have a friend who has osteoarthritis. She calls it, without a thought, “my arthritis,” as in “My arthritis is bothering me today,” or “I’ve taken my meds for my arthritis.” It’s clear to the listener that she owns that disease and everything to do with it. It’s hers. Unable to vanquish it, she welcomes it. Nurtures it. Without realizing it, she’s given it an almost mystical power over her, one that influences her every waking moment.
I understand how this comes to happen. But semantics shape actions. I also have arthritis, the rheumatoid variety. But I refuse to “own” this disease. It found me, settled in and went about its ugly business, but it’s not mine. It’s what it is — simply arthritis. I hold no affection for it, not even the affection of a hostage. It’s an interloper, a squatter in the intimate house of my body, an invader, an enemy with which I do frequent battle. I do my damndest to ignore it.
Which words have power for you?