#SeasonofSmiles -Whitnie

02Jun 2020

My son recently said my name for the first time. I don’t mean he called me Mommy. He says that about a hundred times a day, even when he gets a response. He said my actual name. Continue reading

19May 2020

When it became clear that I would be caring for my son into his adult life, I knew that I had to make sure my body and mind would be ready for that. I knew I had to be as strong and durable as possible. Continue reading

06Mar 2020

The following is our journey into using Medical Marijuana (MMJ) with our son who has CTD, autism, and epilepsy. For those of us in OH, this is a new option in the treatment of seizures and most of us have little to no experience in the medical use of this product. In talking with other families, I realize that there’s a lot of confusion, stigma, and fear, but also curiosity, surrounding the use of MMJ in the treatment of epilepsy and other conditions, so I thought I would share what I’ve learned thus far on our journey with MMJ. Continue reading

05Feb 2020

I wanted to talk a bit about something that my son said to me last year. This surely stuck out in my mind as important to share here. I’m sure a large number of readers are parents or caregivers of a loved one with a creatine deficiency. Some parents may have more than one child. And given that every family dynamic is different and each affected child is unique, this is just our own family’s experience that led to this topic. Continue reading

20Jan 2020

Pictured: Dr. Sonja Sucic from the Medical University of Vienna presenting on pharmacochaperoning at the Creatine Deficiency Workshop in Rotterdam in September 2019

Being a CCDS/CTD mom, I understand that it can be very easy to put a huge amount of hope in the idea of prospective treatments. The exciting news is that it’s not just a cliché to say that we can each make a difference. Our individual participation in the research process is vital and necessary to help researchers in the quest to find a cure for CTD. There are researchers around the world working on innovative new ideas for therapies that could really work to help our loved ones. Providing access to patient data is in our hands as parents and caregivers, and it is not an understatement to say that if we don’t do our job, the researchers can’t do their jobs. Continue reading

11Nov 2019

When I was faced with the CTD diagnosis of my son, who is now 10, I felt a huge, monstrous, feeling of overwhelming and it never went away. None of this is his fault, but the responsibility, the volume of things that needed to be taught, the learning, the management of appointments, the therapy, medication, and paperwork was a lot to handle and it ultimately fell on my lap as his primary caregiver. Continue reading

31Oct 2019

When the news came out about Lumos stopping the development of the drug they were working on to treat Creatine Transporter Deficiency (CTD), as a parent, it was a very emotional day and made me realize how important the drug development process is to me, to our family, and to our community. I recalled seeing a presentation at the inaugural ACD CCDS Scientific & Patient Symposium in 2018 regarding the drug development process that was helpful and eye-opening for me as a relative newbie to the world of pharmaceutical drug development.

I was so happy and relieved to find out that the Vigilan study would continue to move forward and that Ultragenyx would take over the role as sponsor of this study. Most recently, Ultragenyx shared an update with our CCDS community regarding their role in the VIgilan study and their CTD clinical development program UX068. This was yet another reminder about all that I have yet to learn about this process.

For my husband and I, participating in the Vigilan study and being involved with the Association for Creatine Deficiencies as volunteers is extremely important to us, and we are so grateful to have opportunities to advocate for our son (Cadman, who is 4 years old and was diagnosed with CTD just before his second birthday), and play a role in the eventual development of a successful treatment for CTD. We have participated in the Ultragenyx online survey on CTD, and it was pretty quick and easy, and great to know we were helping contribute to the knowledge base of the team at Ultragenyx who are working hard to develop a CTD treatment that will hopefully make a meaningful difference in the lives of patients.

It can be overwhelming to try to understand the timeline and terminology involved in clinical drug development, as well as making sense of what all of it means for our son. In this presentation, Dr. Dave Weiner from Lumos does an excellent job of explaining the process. It is definitely worth the time to watch this if you have any questions about the drug development topic.

**Thanks to Erin Coller, ACD Ambassador, for writing this blog post.**

20Nov 2017

As we approach the holiday season, it is customary to reflect and give thanks for the blessings we have. It’s also the season of giving and a time of year when many open their hearts and wallets to share in their blessings and give back to many meaningful charities.

For me, I enjoy the opportunity to live on both sides of this giving equation. I am blessed. I have a loving husband and three beautiful children. Our life is wonderful. We play sports, go to school and work, and enjoy everything that we can as a family of five. We raise our children to be kind and to give.

Our middle child suffers from an incurable rare, genetic disorder called X-linked Creatine Transporter Deficiency (CTD). His is one of three cerebral creatine deficiency syndromes and the reason I also find myself devoted to a nonprofit that is on the receiving end of this season of giving- receiving donations from AmazonSmile.

I joined The Association for Creatine Deficiencies a few years back in an attempt to help my son by helping others. My son’s disorder doesn’t have a treatment, but I rationalize my dedication to the cause in hopes that, in some way, I might make a difference, if not for him directly, for the others who will inevitably follow.

This journey that started out as self-preservation has evolved into a passion and a purpose. Today, the ACD is a thriving organization driven by mothers, just like me, who can’t give up hope that one day they will make a difference for their children and so many more.

AmazonSmile has touched our organization, not only financially, but spiritually. AmazonSmile is a way for our community, family, and friends to share in our purpose and to contribute to our cause in an effortless, yet significant, way.

A simple purchase that equates to a larger financial impact goes a long way toward helping the ACD sustain our mission to providing education, research opportunities, and support for patients diagnosed with GAMT, AGAT, and CTD. Participants in the

AmazonSmile program can share in our pride and accomplishments knowing that they too, can make a difference with a simple click on smile.amazon.com/ch/46-2133007….and, knowing you are making a difference makes everyone smile. Thank you Amazon! #seasonofsmiles #acd #ctd

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Disclaimer: All thoughts and ideas expressed in the Creatine Community Blog represent the individual blog contributor's opinions and not those of the Association for Creatine Deficiencies. The ideas expressed in the Creatine Community Blog, and any other locations on the creatineinfo.org website, should never be construed as medical advice, even if the information relates to actual health care experiences of the contributor. Individuals should always follow the instructions of their physician and make no changes to their care unless instructed to do so by their physician.