I Forgot to Remember

I Forgot to Remember

A Memoir of Amnesia

Book - 2014
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Baker & Taylor
Documents the story of an amnesia survivor who permanently lost all of her memories after a traumatic brain injury and who endured a more than 25-year effort to relearn basic skills and reclaim her life.

Baker
& Taylor

"Just twenty-two years old, Su Meck was already married and the mother of two children in 1988 when a ceiling fan in the kitchen of her home fell from its mounting and struck her in the head. She survived the life-threatening swelling in her brain that resulted from the accident, but when she regained consciousness in the hospital the next day, she didn't know her own name. She didn't recognize a single family member or friend, she couldn't read or write or brush her teeth or use a fork--and she didn't have even a scrap of memory from her life up to that point. The fiercely independent and outspoken young woman she had been vanished completely. Most patients who suffer amnesia as a result of a head injury eventually regain their memories, but Su never did. After three weeks in the hospital she was sent back out into a world about which she knew nothing: What did it mean to be someone's wife? To be a mother? How did everyone around her seem to know what they were supposed to do or say at any given moment?Adrift in the chaos of mental data that most of us think of as everyday life, Su became an adept mimic, fashioning a self and a life out of careful observation and ironclad routine. She had no dreams for herself, no plans outside the ever-burgeoning daily to-do list of a stay-at-home mom. The Meck family left Texas to start over in Maryland, and told almost no one in their new life about Su's accident. Nearly twenty years would pass before Su understood the full extent of the losses she and her family suffered as a result of her injury. As a series of personally devastating events shattered the "normal" life she had worked so hard to build, Su realized that she would have to grow up all over again, and finally take control of the strange second life she had awoken into"--

Simon and Schuster
For fans of Susannah Cahalan’s Brain on Fire, the courageous memoir of a woman robbed of all her memories by a traumatic brain injury—and her more than twenty-five-year struggle to reclaim her life.

What would you do if you lost your past?

In 1988 Su Meck was twenty-two and married with two children when a ceiling fan in her kitchen fell and struck her on the head, leaving her with a traumatic brain injury that erased all her memories of her life up to that point. Although her body healed rapidly, her memories never returned. Yet after just three weeks in the hospital, Su was released and once again charged with the care of two toddlers and a busy household.

Adrift in a world about which she understood almost nothing, Su became an adept mimic, gradually creating routines and rituals that sheltered her and her family, however narrowly, from the near-daily threat of disaster—or so she thought. Though Su would eventually relearn to tie her shoes, cook a meal, and read and write, nearly twenty years would pass before a series of personally devastating events shattered the “normal” life she had worked so hard to build, and she realized that she would have to grow up all over again.

In her own indelible voice, Su offers us a view from the inside of a terrible injury, with the hope that her story will help give other brain injury sufferers and their families the resolve and courage to build their lives anew. Piercing, heartbreaking, but finally uplifting, this book is the true story of a woman determined to live life on her own terms.

Publisher: New York : Simon & Schuster, c2014
Edition: 1st Simon & Schuster hardcover ed
ISBN: 9781451685817
Branch Call Number: 616.85232 MEC
Characteristics: 280 p. :,ill., port. ;,23 cm.
Additional Contributors: De Visé, Daniel

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writermala
Sep 14, 2017

Su Meck's account of her battle with total amnesia is much more than a memoir. It is also much more than a description of her life with amnesia. It is quite shocking what this young woman had to go through. In addition to everything else that she faces, Su has to learn about her husband's dalliances, in spite of which they continue together. All in all a unique book.

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lilypad_1
Jan 19, 2017

My heart goes out to this woman and her children. The accident was really almost minor when you see the medical malpractice and abuse by her husband. That she survived day by day and hour by hour should give anyone dealing with TBI, PTSD, Migraine Syndrome, Vertigo, Learning disabilities, Brain Fog, hope- because she had it all. She had it all with a husband who did not seek treatment for her, left her alone with 3 children, moved her all over the world while having multiple affairs, putting them in debt, physically and emotionally and verbally abusing her.
She powered on and on and on, I was amazed at her as I read page by page. Her successes were very inspiring.

o
okbookgirl
Jul 24, 2014

Su Meck is a very brave woman who suffers an unimaginably "random" brain injury, and struggles to recover with almost no rehabilitative support. This is a travesty in a country like the USA. And she does this while taking care of her young children. I applaud her courage and determination. As the author Lisa Genova comments - this is not just a survivor's story...this is a hero's story.

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Lauramlonghi
Apr 17, 2014

Be prepared to be disgusted and angry. The malpractice done to this woman by the hospital and doctors who allowed (forced) her to leave with no rehab having complete amnesia so she is essentially a child needing to relearn everything, to care for a toddler and an infant, on her own is just the start. Her family is clueless and neglects her. Her husband is a sexual and mental abuser and quite possibly a psychopath. Her children come out as the heroes--everyone else pretty much fails her.

emily8 Apr 01, 2014

A very difficult read. The abuse, sexual, mental and physical, by her cowardly spouse makes for an almost impossible read. There are tender moments with her and her children that make up for a lot. Be warned that this is a sad commentary on marriage in America while attempting to tell the story of a totally unique disability of amnesia.

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