Throughout our journeys in life, it can be hard to believe in coincidences. 

But there comes a point where it’s more challenging not to believe. 

Maybe we don’t necessarily create our own destiny, but rather participate in its story as it continues to unfold. 

If that’s the case, Brenda Speckin was meant to see our FINDING STRONG shirt at the exact time she did.

“I have been struggling with depression for since I was young and in high school,” Brenda said. “I made a few mistakes along the way. Along the way, I somehow forgot to help myself as I was helping others. Don’t get me wrong, helping somebody you love is never a mistake, but forgetting about taking care of yourself is.”

For a million reasons, Brenda stopped going to the gym – the one place that had always given her solace. She also stopped taking medication that was essential to her health. 

“I had not been doing so well in life,” she said. “Mentally I’ve always loved the gym but lacked the strength to go. I am now struggling with weight loss. I had a baby 11 months ago and I know that as mother, your children should always come before yourself. My kids are the reason I get up in the morning… or even get out of bed and work. Depression is something I know that people struggle with and I hope that no one has to feel like I do every day. I haven't had the support I need from any direction, so it's been hard. But I’m trying.”

Brenda is actually in school currently to better herself and others by becoming a personal trainer. There have been days where she didn’t know how she would get through it. 

But that’s when she found the APEMAN brand – at the absolute perfect moment.

“One of my instructors is Jason Kamens,” she said. “He and his family are an amazing bunch. I saw the APEMAN STRONG banner in the gym one day and looked into it further. I read through a lot of the sayings and phrases, and the meaning behind them. The one that was a huge bright light and a good slap in the face was FINDING STRONG. I cried when I read it.”

I will not break. I cannot be broken. I feel the weight of the world against me, but my confidence will not waver. I will not be shaken. This is when the best of me comes to the surface. I will battle. I will fight. I will endure. I will show you my strength. I will inflict the force of my will upon this. You cannot bring a night upon me that I will not survive. As the darkness eclipses hope, I will shine brighter. You can measure many things, but not my heart. So bring the fire, bring the wrath, bring the flood, and I will still stand. I will survive it all. My destiny will never end here, it will end at my choosing. Quiet the skeptics. Cast out those who lack faith. I will fight this war independent of everyone before I will give in a single inch. I will be victorious. FINDING STRONG when all hope is lost is the essence of who I am.

Brenda said these words were a reminder of what she used to stand for, but forgot. She now carries the card with her everywhere as she becomes the best possible version of herself. 

“These words saved my life,” she said. “I have a long way to go. But I don't feel so alone now. I want to make your brand proud. I want to defeat this darkness that I have clouding me. Your brand is amazing, and I thank you for staying true to what you believe in. Truly, from the bottom of my heart, thank you APEMAN for helping me stay strong and for being a light in my life.”