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Once Upon A Gene

Once Upon A Gene

True stories of raising rare kiddos

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Media with a Mission with Believe Limited CEO Patrick James Lynch

Media with a Mission with Believe Limited CEO Patrick James Lynch Patrick James Lynch has to inject himself with medication every other day because his liver doesn't produce a protein that helps his blood vessels seal when they burst. He and his brother were both born with hemophilia and he's since lost his brother to the disorder. After his loss, he felt compelled to reach others to provide support and awareness about the importance of life-sustaining medicine. Patrick is the founder and CEO of Believe Limited, he hosts camps, produces web series, creates workbooks and workshops, hosts the BloodStream podcast and has produced a film called Bombardier Blood. LINKS AND RESOURCES MENTIONED Believe Limited https://www.believeltd.com/ BloodStream Podcast https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/bloodstream/id1133574474?mt=2 Bombardier Blood https://www.bombardierblood.com/ My Beautiful Stutter https://www.mybeautifulstutter.com/ Stop The Bleeding! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UCfGfh6Pax0 The Birth Story: Welcome Vivian Bea‪!‬ https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/the-birth-story-welcome-vivian-bea/id1133574474?i=1000513633326 TUNE INTO THE ONCE UPON A GENE PODCAST Spotify https://open.spotify.com/show/5Htr9lt5vXGG3ac6enxLQ7 Apple Podcasts https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/once-upon-a-gene/id1485249347 Stitcher https://www.stitcher.com/podcast/once-upon-a-gene Overcast https://overcast.fm/itunes1485249347/once-upon-a-gene CONNECT WITH EFFIE PARKS Website https://effieparks.com/ Twitter https://twitter.com/OnceUponAGene Instagram https://www.instagram.com/onceuponagene.podcast/?hl=en Built Ford Tough Facebook Group https://www.facebook.com/groups/1877643259173346/
April 15, 2021

Top Tips on Advocating For Your Child with Momvocate Kara Karlson

Kara Karlson is a fellow rare disease mama and attorney who is advocating hard in the policy world. She's currently serving on the Governor's Developmental Disability Advisory Council ("DDAC") where she helps set policy and develop programs for the developmentally disabled in Arizona. She is sharing her top tips for becoming your best advocate.  EPISODE HIGHLIGHTS Tell me about your daughter and how you are part of the rare disease community. I got involved with rare disease through my daughter. I had an uneventful pregnancy, everything was fine and she was born a healthy weight. Then she was having trouble eating and that got us started down a long road that eventually led to a diagnosis of mosaicism for multiple marker chromosomes. Originally my daughter was diagnosed with failure to thrive, had postcricoid cushion which was interfering with her feeding, and now she has autism, developmental delays and likely intellectual delays based on a duplicate marker chromosome from portions of 17P and 19. Outside of being a mother, I'm an attorney, so I'm a professional advocate and it's provided me a leg up on getting my daughter the care she needs.  Where do we start advocating? Make sure you have an open line or communication with your providers. Know that they have an ethical obligation to explain things to you in a way that you can understand so that you know what questions to ask and be a strong advocate. If you're being sent home and you're not comfortable, be assertive and communicate that. Get a concrete diagnosis or as concrete as you can. Get specific, qualifying conditions identified so you can qualify your child for programs and services. There are measurements critical to getting care and ensuring therapy is working. Have benchmark measurements to monitor progress. Always obtain medical records so you have insight into the doctor's thoughts and takeaways. From these records, you can take the data and do your own research and you know what documents to include when applying to insurance, providers or state health agencies. What are your thoughts on managing the financial aspects of medically complex kids? There's usually a cash discount of 50% or more or a prompt payment discount, so ask for those options. The providers normally offer payment assistance, so if you're in a position of financial hardship, you can get in touch with a patient advocate at the hospital for assistance. The key is to stay in touch regarding medical expenses and document everything. How do you ask for referrals? If possible, it's best to ask other people you trust. If your child's condition is unique, reach out to other patient groups to see if anyone can refer you. If there's a long waitlist, get on multiple provider lists and seek out other options while you wait. LINKS AND RESOURCES MENTIONED Finding Happy The Podcast‬ Stronger Together   CONTACT KARA Momvocate Website Momvocate on Twitter Movocate Email Momvocate Blog
April 8, 2021

Effisode 018 – Nacho, Nacho Man

TUNE INTO THE ONCE UPON A GENE PODCAST Spotify Apple Podcasts Stitcher Overcast CONNECT WITH EFFIE PARKS Website Twitter Instagram Built Ford Tough Facebook Group
April 6, 2021

AllStripes – Jump Start New Research for Your Rare Disease with Caitlin Nichols

ONCE UPON A GENE - EPISODE 076 AllStripes: Jump Start New Research for Your Rare Disease with Caitlin Nichols Caitlin Nichols is the Scientific Affairs and Research Manager at AllStripes— the first and only research platform dedicated to rare diseases. They make it easy for patients to contribute to new treatment studies from home. They do the work to collect, analyze and de-identify medical records to help power faster and better drug development. They translate medical data into actionable insights to unlock new treatments for rare disease.  LINKS AND RESOURCES MENTIONED Once Upon a Gene TV - YouTube https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCYPzJqCJmStgR32T_5031tQ/featured AllStripes Research https://www.allstripes.com/ TUNE INTO THE ONCE UPON A GENE PODCAST Spotify https://open.spotify.com/show/5Htr9lt5vXGG3ac6enxLQ7 Apple Podcasts https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/once-upon-a-gene/id1485249347 Stitcher https://www.stitcher.com/podcast/once-upon-a-gene Overcast https://overcast.fm/itunes1485249347/once-upon-a-gene CONNECT WITH EFFIE PARKS Website https://effieparks.com/ Twitter https://twitter.com/OnceUponAGene Instagram https://www.instagram.com/onceuponagene.podcast/?hl=en Built Ford Tough Facebook Group https://www.facebook.com/groups/1877643259173346/  
April 1, 2021

Rare Mom Madeline Cheney – The Rare Life Podcast

Fellow rare mom and podcast host, Madeline Cheney, is joining me for a chat today. Be sure to check out her podcast, The Rare Life Podcast. And don't forget to subscribe! EPISODE HIGHLIGHTS Tell me about yourself and your family. I am a stay at home mom to four-year-old Wendy, who is medically typical. Two year old Kimball has a very rare disorder. My husband and I live in Utah. When I'm not caring for my children, I devote my time to my podcast. Tell me about Kimball's diagnosis. Kimball has a rare genetic mutation called achondroplasia punctata x-linked type 1, which is a type of skeletal dysplasia with only 125 known cases in the world. The condition affects his bones, he's deaf and blind, has dwarfism, his spine is soft, has no nose bone and low muscle tone. What aspect of Kimball's most recent challenges are you grieving? My main source of grief is how much he has to suffer and how unfair it is. It loops me back to when he was first diagnosed. The unfairness of everything breaks my heart as I watch him go through the challenges he faces. It loops me back to the first and subsequent diagnoses and resurfaces some of the same feelings. I love him more and more each day, which makes this more and more painful.  How do you manage your stress and emotional wellbeing? I've learned a lot from other parents and my therapist to feel grief and lean into it rather than suppress it or push it down. I've learned that it's easier to process things in the moment rather than process it later in the future and have to deal with it then. What is the catalyst that makes you the mom that Kimball needs? I'm better able to empathize in ways that I couldn't before and I understand the gravity of not being able to understand other people's experiences. Unlike my pursuit of being strong and trying to always portray that to others, I now know in the depth of my bones how strong I am because of the things I've gone through. That's my main evolution. Now with upcoming challenges with Kimball, even when I feel weak, I know I'll get through it and it's valuable to know that about myself. What do you want to leave listeners with? Competition and comparison makes any journey so much worse. Don't compare yourself or your situation and don't isolate yourself because of it. I encourage you to work on that if you struggle with it. Don't let that be a reason your don't share your story because sharing will help with healing and connecting with other people. LINKS AND RESOURCES MENTIONED Finding Happy The Podcast‬ https://www.findinghappythepodcast.com/ Stronger Together https://strongertogetherevent.com/ The Rare Life Podcast https://therarelifepodcast.com/ TUNE INTO THE ONCE UPON A GENE PODCAST Spotify https://open.spotify.com/show/5Htr9lt5vXGG3ac6enxLQ7 Apple Podcasts https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/once-upon-a-gene/id1485249347 Stitcher https://www.stitcher.com/podcast/once-upon-a-gene Overcast https://overcast.fm/itunes1485249347/once-upon-a-gene CONNECT WITH EFFIE PARKS Website https://effieparks.com/ Twitter https://twitter.com/OnceUponAGene Instagram https://www.instagram.com/onceuponagene.podcast/?hl=en Built Ford Tough Facebook Group https://www.facebook.com/groups/1877643259173346/  
March 25, 2021

Rare Mom Madeline Cheney – The Rare Life Podcast

ONCE UPON A GENE - EPISODE 075 Rare Mom Madeline Cheney - The Rare Life Podcast Fellow rare mom and podcast host, Madeline Cheney, is joining me for a chat today. Be sure to check out her podcast, The Rare Life Podcast. And don't forget to subscribe! EPISODE HIGHLIGHTS Tell me about yourself and your family. I am a stay at home mom to four-year-old Wendy, who is medically typical. Two year old Kimball has a very rare disorder. My husband and I live in Utah. When I'm not caring for my children, I devote my time to my podcast. Tell me about Kimball's diagnosis. Kimball has a rare genetic mutation called achondroplasia punctata x-linked type 1, which is a type of skeletal dysplasia with only 125 known cases in the world. The condition affects his bones, he's deaf and blind, has dwarfism, his spine is soft, has no nose bone and low muscle tone. What aspect of Kimball's most recent challenges are you grieving? My main source of grief is how much he has to suffer and how unfair it is. It loops me back to when he was first diagnosed. The unfairness of everything breaks my heart as I watch him go through the challenges he faces. It loops me back to the first and subsequent diagnoses and resurfaces some of the same feelings. I love him more and more each day, which makes this more and more painful.  How do you manage your stress and emotional wellbeing? I've learned a lot from other parents and my therapist to feel grief and lean into it rather than suppress it or push it down. I've learned that it's easier to process things in the moment rather than process it later in the future and have to deal with it then. What is the catalyst that makes you the mom that Kimball needs? I'm better able to empathize in ways that I couldn't before and I understand the gravity of not being able to understand other people's experiences. Unlike my pursuit of being strong and trying to always portray that to others, I now know in the depth of my bones how strong I am because of the things I've gone through. That's my main evolution. Now with upcoming challenges with Kimball, even when I feel weak, I know I'll get through it and it's valuable to know that about myself. What do you want to leave listeners with? Competition and comparison makes any journey so much worse. Don't compare yourself or your situation and don't isolate yourself because of it. I encourage you to work on that if you struggle with it. Don't let that be a reason your don't share your story because sharing will help with healing and connecting with other people. LINKS AND RESOURCES MENTIONED Finding Happy The Podcast‬ https://www.findinghappythepodcast.com/ Stronger Together https://strongertogetherevent.com/ The Rare Life Podcast https://therarelifepodcast.com/ TUNE INTO THE ONCE UPON A GENE PODCAST Spotify https://open.spotify.com/show/5Htr9lt5vXGG3ac6enxLQ7 Apple Podcasts https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/once-upon-a-gene/id1485249347 Stitcher https://www.stitcher.com/podcast/once-upon-a-gene Overcast https://overcast.fm/itunes1485249347/once-upon-a-gene CONNECT WITH EFFIE PARKS Website https://effieparks.com/ Twitter https://twitter.com/OnceUponAGene Instagram https://www.instagram.com/onceuponagene.podcast/?hl=en Built Ford Tough Facebook Group https://www.facebook.com/groups/1877643259173346/  
March 25, 2021

Once Upon A Gene

This is a space I created to share the stories of our not so typical lives. Raising kids who are born with rare genetic syndromes and other types of disabilities can feel pretty isolating. What I know for sure is that when we can find others who 'get it,' we can find a lot more laughter, a lot more hope and feel a lot less alone.
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Host

Effie Parks

Effie Parks

Effie Parks was born in the magical land of Montana, where she was raised with her 12 loving siblings. After moving to Washington and marrying her husband, they were blessed with the birth of their son, Ford Canon Parks. When she learned that Ford had been born with an extremely rare genetic condition – CTNNB1 syndrome – she dove into the world of advocacy. Now, she is the host of her own podcast, Once Upon a Gene, where she speaks to others about their journey through life with rare disease.

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