By John Powell – GlobalTV.com
“About eight years ago I said to my kids…I am going to be on that show one day…and they all laughed at me. When I got through breast cancer four years ago and I was also turning 45, I thought to myself…I got through the chemo, the radiation, the surgery, I am turning 45, what am I waiting for? Life is short,” Sunday told GlobalTV.com.
As a youth pastor, one wonders if such a cutthroat game ever put Sunday in a tough spot morally or ethically?
“It didn’t really test my faith. It actually gave me somewhere to go. When the game got tough, I could go off by myself, pull on the strength of the Lord that I already have and the faith I already have, so for me, it helped keep me centered, it helped give me peace. When I got my letter from home my daughter sent me pages of scripture to encourage me so when it got tough, I would sneak off into the woods and have a quick read. That really helped me a lot,” Sunday recalled as she related more of her Survivor experience.
John Powell: What has your family thought of your time on the show?
Sunday Burquest: “They loved it! They are so proud of me! My boys love to rib me about my challenge performances. (Laughs) We have a good laugh about that. They saw me do things though that I would never do in real life. They are proud of me but they also laugh along with me at the same time.”
John Powell: Being a mom and a youth pastor an advantage or disadvantage in the game?
Sunday Burquest: “The youth pastor part was a huge advantage because I work with young adults and I know how to connect with them. Even before I knew the theme, I knew that would be an advantage for me depending on the cast. The mom part helped me in the fact that many people really trusted me and who would vote out their mom? (Laughs) The part where it affected me negatively was I was underestimated and because I knew better than to rock the boat too much, I flew too low under the radar.”
John Powell: What surprised you the most about the experience? It is only thing to watch it at home and quite another to be on the island surviving and playing the game.
Sunday Burquest: “How difficult it was to make decisions against people you had a relationship with. When you are at home, you are thinking…I would totally turn on that person or I would vote them out if they did that to me! It is totally different though when you are there in the flesh and have bonds with people. You know the names of their children. You know what they do for a living. In that downtime, you really get to know each other so I underestimated how hard it would be to go against those people you have relationships with.”
John Powell: It seemed you and Jessica were on a collision course for most of the game. Explain to us that relationship?
Sunday Burquest: “We had a really good relationship at the very beginning of the game. After the Paul vote, there was damage control that needed to be done with Chris and Bret. I did that but for some reason they were not able to mend those fences with Jessica. It ended up coming down to the fact that I had to choose a side. The mistake on my part is I should have made an extra effort to mend that relationship with Jessica because it is never good to leave a festering relationship in the game.”
“Unfortunately, the edit make it look like I was gunning for her. That is the only part of my strategy that they showed but there was far much more going on. It made for a storyline but I had nothing personal against Jessica. We were both competitors in the game and there were some things she said at the start of the game that I maybe took the wrong way and made me not really trust her completely. It could have been all just one big miscommunication between us but I really wasn’t gunning for her the whole game, it just kinda came to a head.”
John Powell: As a juror what are the qualities are you considering when deciding on the winner of this series?
Sunday Burquest: “For me, I am looking at gameplay because I am such a big fan of the show and I respected the big moves that were being made even by the people not in our alliance. I am looking at who really navigated the game and for me a big part of that is being flexible and adaptable.”
Next time on Survivor…
Watch ‘Survivor: Millennials vs Gen X’ – Episode 12 now on GlobalTV.com/Survivor or on the Global Go app. Don’t miss the three-hour Survivor season finale and reunion special next Wednesday, Dec 14 at 8 et/pt on Global.