When Brenna was born, she was so small that, when her parents brought her home from the hospital, she was wearing doll’s clothes. As she grew, she was slow to reach many developmental milestones and struggled in school; she found it difficult to stay on task, got easily frustrated, and had outbursts, tantrums, and meltdowns at school and at home.
While she had access to some services, when she was finally diagnosed with FASD at age 12, new resources in her area, both for school and everyday life, became available to her and her family, and her parents were better able to understand Brenna’s needs and behaviors.
Now, as a teenager, Brenna works to raise awareness of FASD in her school and the wider community. Since being diagnosed, she wears FASD T-shirts and hands out buttons and informational flyers. She frequently checks in with her friends and grandmother to see how they are doing. She also enjoys piano and choir, and is part of her high school junior varsity color guard.
Her story was recently added to the CDC website, and can be read in full here.