COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (KRDO) -- Sarah Larsen of Colorado Springs knows what it means to fight. After an annual scan in September, doctors diagnosed Sarah with stage two breast cancer. In a matter of days following a pet scan, the diagnosis took a turn.
“We weren’t expecting anything to come back," Sarah says. "Twenty-four hours later, I got a call from the doctor that the cancer had spread to six places along my spine, it’s in my hip, and so now it’s classified as stage four metastatic breast cancer.”
The 35-year-old calls the experience, so far, a fast one.
“You hear people, like, ‘health is the greatest gift,’ then you lose your health and you realize what you’ve lost," she says. "It's crazy how something like this changes your perspective on everything. Like the beauty of aging -- I feel like we spend so much to stop it, mask it, but don't really think about what a gift it is. Now I'm hoping for as many wrinkles as I can get, as many birthdays as I can get."
And the support goes further than that: exercise. Recently, Sarah's boss ran, along with other people who have never met Sarah, in her Sarah's honor.
“Then my siblings kind of jumped on that train and were like, hey we’ll run here, we’ll run actually all over the world for you," Sarah explains.
From there, the initiative to run in support grew. Sarah has had people run in her honor in Colorado Springs, in New York, North Carolina, and even as far as Australia.
Now in April, in a more organized virtual event, people will run not only in support of Sarah, but for loved ones fighting similar battles.
One in eight women in American will be diagnosed with breast cancer in their lifetime.
“So many people have walked through breast cancer," Sarah says. "Most people I’ve talked to have a loved one or a friend or family member who’ve been impacted, so just seeing everyone come together for this cause and running…is kind.”
It's Sarah's hope that the spring even will be used as an opportunity for the community to come together in support of fighting this common illness, the same way her loved ones have rallied behind her.
“Running for the people that you love and, being part of this process, I’m realizing how many people have gone through similar journeys."