Before he was even born, baby Dean had a perinatal ischemic stroke. When loving parents Lauren and Ryan learned that their as-yet-unborn son had already had a stroke, they were devastated and immediately began learning all they could about his situation. While conducting their research, they discovered the website of non-profit organization Children’s Hemiplegia and Stroke Association (CHASA), an internationally-recognized authority on the needs of children who have hemiplegic cerebral palsy.
One day, Mussia Federman was playing in the park when she saw another girl there who she thought looked lonely. The girl was sitting in a wheelchair and couldn’t play on the swings or go down the slide. Mussia says, “I had so much fun playing store with her. When my mother told me about how important it is to include others, I started thinking about what else I could do.” She began talking to her class at school about the value of including and welcoming all children, and she also began hanging out with the Friendship Circle of Miami Beach and North Dade (FCMiami), a group of like-minded folks whose motto is, “Be a friend.”
We’re willing to bet that you haven’t given much thought to your body’s powerful ion channels lately. Yet, even when you ignore them, they still perform a critical role in your body to keep you functioning and playing the way you do. Sadly, a very rare and as-yet-inexplicable mutation in the SCN8A gene that encodes one of those super-important ion channels can cause us to have seizures, developmental delays, and an overall medically fragile state.