Brenda Gonzales Means was feeling awful, days on end, beset by headaches, confusion and lethargy, and she didn’t know why.
What she did know was that, as she reached her mid-30s, her combat sports career — her passion and her principal source of income — was slipping away.
But finally, as she might solve the style of a difficult opponent, Gonzales figured it out.
On Friday, free at last from the debilitating effects of mercury poisoning, the former Moriarty Pinto basketball and volleyball star is scheduled to resume her MMA career. She’s matched against Panama’s Joselyne Edwards Laboriel in a bantamweight fight in Clive, Iowa, a Des Moines suburb.