During Sounders FC's preseason preparation for the FIFA Club World Cup in Morocco, goalkeeper Stefan Frei showed up one day sporting a platinum blonde hairstyle.
In an interview with Jayda Evans of the Seattle Times, Frei opened up about his new look and how he changed his hair color in solidarity with his mother, Marlies, who has been undergoing cancer treatment since December.
“We’ve been trying to feed off her energy,” Frei told Evans. “Cancer is always this boogeyman word. Everybody knows you’re supposed to be afraid of it, but nobody knows how it arrives at your doorstep. It just does. Afterward you’re like, maybe those were warning signs or this and that. But it’s just all of a sudden, it’s there. A lot of people deal with this, kids, grown-ups, it’s brutal. It puts things in perspective.”
Frei spoke about the experience of his mother undergoing brain surgery during the holidays. He also revealed how spending time with family and speaking with experts during this extremely difficult period has given him a renewed outlook on life.
“Dr. Grethlein made a really good statement that really stuck with me,” Frei told Evans. “She said, ‘Do treatments so that you can live. Don’t live so that you can do treatments.’
“It’s really a thing we can take into all aspects of life. Work so that you can live. Don’t live so that you can work. Do the things that you’re not so happy with so that you can do the things you’re happy with. We all get that twisted in our lives unfortunately.”
You can read Jayda Evans' full piece in the Seattle Times HERE.