In June 2018, Sarah Eunice was diagnosed with stage 3 breast cancer. July 6th she started chemotherapy. 12 weeks of AC (Red Devil), 12 weeks of Taxol, followed by a bilateral mastectomy, 6 weeks of radiation and a final reconstruction surgery.
“I was initially very upset, however that only lasted a short time. Once I understood my diagnosis and treatment my entire mindset changed. I knew that I needed to have a positive outlook and be confident that I was going to make it through... I made the decision at the very start of diagnosis that I would continue working out every day that I had the ability to do so.”
Along with CrossFit, Sarah uses Street Parking, an online app for working out at home. Maintaining a strong body and healthy lifestyle has helped carry her through. There are days when all she can do is go for a walk, so she does that. Other days she’s too sick to do anything. On those days she notices a difference in her mental strength. Solidifying her desire to move and keep healthy. She’s working out for herself, but also with the desire to inspire others through her story, posting daily workouts as a motivation for others in difficult times. She can be found on the Instagram handle sarah___eunice (with three underscores). Sarah’s workouts, her words are letting other people who face a diagnosis of cancer know that they are not alone. There is a community of people living a similar reality, a community of people cheering each other on.
Sarah’s story goes deeper. Sarah and her partner Deron, both explain how Sarah has changed since the diagnosis of breast cancer. Deron sees how she’s gained strength in an authentic way and that her mindset has shifted so that she takes on what each day brings in way that is actually more joyful than before. “She amazes me” he says. Sarah echos the sentiment. “Since my diagnosis I have had more peace and am happier and healthier than I have ever been in my life. I believe this is a journey that was meant to bring me to the next step in life, as I had been praying for direction.” Sarah manages two dental offices in Coos Bay. For so long she’s also been a giving mom to two boys. Michael (19) and Matthew (18) are both now out of the house, starting their adult lives. A common feeling for many empty nesters, Sarah felt like her ‘job’ was done and a bit lost in that knowledge. Through cancer she is digging deep to discover new parts of herself and she knows with easy, assuredness that she will come out of it all with a purpose. Her deep knowledge of this is so solid, calm, real that there’s no doubting it when hearing her talk. Deron says that Sarah has always sacrificed, always given of herself as a mom. That she supported him while attended school and has the ability to bring out the best in everyone around her. Sarah is now in a new space. She can receive more fully and is taking all of life in. “I have been overwhelmed by the love and support from my best friend, Deron. He has been there for me every step of the way and has been so gentle and loving. We have found something truly special together in all of this”.
Sarah’s boys have been a great support as well. Her youngest, Matthew introduced her to CrossFit. He left for bootcamp in August. His graduation from Marine Corps Boot Camp and Sarah’s last chemo treatment will be on the same day. The two have leaned on each other and propped each other up this year. Both walking through new and sometimes difficult worlds, separately, yet together. Sarah joined CrossFit in October three years ago. October is also Breast Cancer Awareness month, which she finds serendipitous, believing life helped prepare her for the battle ahead. Currently Sarah has three rounds of chemo left. The first surgery is scheduled for December followed by radiation and a final reconstruction surgery.
Sarah’s full of heart spirit is definitely inspirational. She’s is staying focused. Loving fiercely the people that mean the most to her, taking care of her body and sharing her story to anyone it will help. Sarah never played sports, she wasn’t even very interested in working out prior to starting CrossFit. Taking care of her body so she can fight cancer has given her a new resolve and motivation. A new understanding of how the mind and body are related. No matter the fitness level being active is accessible to anyone. She encourages people to get out there and move. Through CrossFit and Street Parking Sarah has found a crowd of people cheering her on. A community to be part of. Additionally, Sarah urges men and women to go to the doctor. Don’t put it off! Due to financials concerns and a negative experience she put off going for two years. Make the call and schedule an appointment if there is a concern. Get a second opinion if that feels right.
Greg Carter noted “I don’t think you could find anyone more deserving of the title Featured Warrior. Both Deron and Sarah are Everyday Warriors that inspire me to put my faith and hope in God while always giving my best effort no matter what the odds are. With those two teamed up against cancer, I feels sorry for cancer. It may take a toll, but it will never destroy their spirit.”