SAN ANTONIO — Sarah Gabriel goes to San Pedro Springs Park to meditate. Lately, she's needed some extra peace and prayer, after learning a pain in her abdomen was a Dermoid Ovarian Cyst.
"It can have teeth and skin and hair," explained Gabriel. "They call it a Teratoma, which, in Greek, means monstrous tumor."
Gabriel's diagnosis is rare. The only treatment is a pricey surgery that's costing her about $2000 out of pocket. Gabriel works as a healer, massage therapist, and ordained priestess - not exactly lucrative professions.
"I had to allow myself to ask for help," she said.
With less than two weeks before her surgery, she made a plea for help on Facebook, offering to sing, tell stories, and even rub feet for donations.
In less than one day, her surgical treatment was fully-funded. Dozens of people donation - some, she's never met.
"I'm so grateful and amazed. It's a wonderful reminder that we're provided for when we're willing to ask," said Gabriel.
However, most of the people helping her are those who she has helped in the past. They say it's easy to help someone who leads by example.
"She's touched a lot of people, and people are more than happy to give," said her friend Audrie Henry. "Being more communal and uplifting one another, and stepping away from that individualistic society we've become is resonating with a lot of people."
That generous spirit is one reason why, today, Gabriel isn't just giving thanks for her life, she's giving thanks for those who make life worth living.
Gabriel requests that anyone interested in helping with her recovery visit her website: sarahnoellegabriel.com.