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I Forgot to Remember: A Memoir of Amnesia
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I Forgot to Remember: A Memoir of Amnesia

3.46  ·  Rating details ·  1,249 Ratings  ·  237 Reviews
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
Hardcover, 288 pages
Published February 4th 2014 by Simon Schuster (first published February 1st 2014)
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Jeanette  "Astute Crabbist"
3.5 stars

There are a lot of novels and films about amnesia, but the reality of living with the condition is considerably more difficult than what is portrayed in fiction. At least for Su Meck. Some people with brain injuries are able to recover some of their memories over time. Not so for Su. She has no recall of the first 22 years of her life before her brain injury, and very little memory of the first few years after the injury.

Imagine coming to consciousness in a hospital with no idea who you
Dec 30, 2013 rated it really liked it
Many thanks to goodreads for the advance readers copy of this book. Amazing read. Amazing lady.

This is the story of a young wife and mother incapacitated by a traumatic brain injury that stole her entire life from her. She suffered complete amnesia and was unable to remember anything from her past. Her family and friends were nothing more than strangers. Her environment was unknown. Her life was a huge blank.

I cannot possibly imagine waking up daily and not knowing who I am, where I am, who the
Feb 07, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: memoir, format-kindle
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Rebecca Foster
Amnesia memoirs – isn’t that an oxymoron? Nonetheless, a couple of recent books have marketed themselves as just that.

“I don’t remember any of what I’m about to tell you.” With that jolting line, Meck begins her chronicle of a rare case of complete retrograde amnesia, known as “Hollywood amnesia” because it occurs more in movies than in real life. She has absolutely no memories between her birth in 1965 and May 22, 1988. On that day she was playing with her son in their kitchen when a ceiling fa
Nov 09, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I was lucky enough to win a copy of this from a Goodreads first reads giveaway.

Wow... just wow. I had a really hard time putting this book down. What Su Meck went through is just unbelievable, and I found myself eager for the next chapter to find out if things got worse, or better. Even now, after finishing the book, I've got to remind myself that it is a work of nonfiction, not fiction.

Throughout this book I felt admiration for Su, frustration towards some members of her family (was there som
Sydney O (Сидней О)
I don't have much of a review, as this is was a requirement for a university class; but, the information in the book is interesting. (Amnesia isn't very common, even if it's in all of the films).
Chihoe Ho
Nov 26, 2013 rated it liked it
Su Meck tells an intriguing personal account on how a brain injury had affected the course of her life. But that's just all, she tells. Every single detail, which sometimes has no consequence to her or the reader. And she repeats. In retrospect, that does slightly capture how she must have felt when living with the repetitive but familiar routine that she was only comfortable with.

There are some honest revelations that she shares of herself, her husband, and her family. It was all very empatheti
Dec 05, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Read as digital ARC.

I feel like biographies, as long as they are well-organized and interesting, should all be rated fives--because, hey, this is someone's life. That's something that really struck me about I Forgot To Remember--it's not some movie, where everything is black and white, right or wrong, where everyone is a hero or a villain. This book is a beautiful reflection of real life, with all its heartbreaks, what-ifs and uncertainties. It's simply fascinating.
Sonya Watkins
Dec 14, 2013 rated it really liked it
Su is courageous, more so than most people could ever know. To live like she did in the begining, and the constant terror she must have felt, is heart breaking. I love how far she has come, and hope she continues to learn, be brave, and voice herself in the future. I hope Jim realizes how special she is.
Nov 07, 2013 rated it liked it
In 2011, the Washington Post published an article about Meck. I read the article, fascinated, but I don't think I understood then just how gone her memory was or what a profound impact that would have.

Meck's memoir goes a long way toward explaining that, but I wonder how possible it really is to understand that -- after all, Meck, who in many senses became a new person as a consequence of her injury (you could get into a serious ton of philosophy here -- who are you without your memories?), only
Lynn Genheimer
Feb 04, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
An inspiring story of one person's courage to survive.

A true story of one journey through life under extreme circumstances. Told with honesty. showing the real ups and downs of maturing in life o
g with a sereious medical condition. A message to the medical community that not being able to explain a medical conditiupporton does not mean it is just in your head. Despite little support from family and the doctors this woman shown great courage in fighting to understand the world around her and to t
Ericka Zhamkochyan
Jan 12, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: own-in-book
Very interesting book. I was intrigued how this story would go since it is a memoir about losing memory, so i was very curious. The book did not let me down. awesome book!
Caroline Barron
May 11, 2014 rated it it was ok
There is no denying Su Meck’s story is intriguing – since I can remember I’ve been fascinated by the idea, or perhaps the logistics and fall-out, of waking up not remembering a single thing. Add to this Meck was only 22 and the mother of two with an asshole of a husband (more on that later) and you should have a rip-roaring read.

But, and it’s a big but for me, I found Meck’s voice bizarre. She is not a natural writer and at times the story feels forced and disengaged. Meck writes (as a possible
Carol -  Reading Writing and Riesling
My View:
This is a book that caused much debate, actually let me re phrase that; not so much debate – but rather a consensus and shared sadness that these events relayed in this memoir actually occurred – the systems that let you down Su, the situations that you coped with on your own are heartbreaking; this is an open, frank and at times confronting creative memoir that offers an insider’s view of life after suffering a Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) but more or rather should I say in addition, th
Robby Hamlin
Dec 07, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This book will remain in my head hopefully to my last day on earth - you think you have heard it all, and then Su Meck's amazing life comes to print. The title, having to do with memory or the lack of it, interested me since I did have a short period back in time, in the winter of 1967, when an inoperable injury to my skull left me with no memory. The cause was what you can call a garden variety head-on collision, college kids drinking and driving late at night. After a few days in coma, my reco ...more
Feb 23, 2014 rated it liked it
Shelves: memoir
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
I read an advance copy, so there were possibly changes in the final version, I don't know. It's a fascinating book, in the way that terrible stories and accidents kind of grab your attention and though you think "no, I should move on" still you stay and gawk. It very much reads as a "as told to" sort of book, and no wonder, since Su has yet to recover all her verbal skills. I don't really know how to rate this book, really (though I will, of course)...there are things in it that just kind of mad ...more
Aug 07, 2015 rated it liked it
I always saw a bunch of books on memory loss at the library, and this is the first one I picked up. Nice title btw, the book overall I would give a 3.5.

I believe Su Meck's case is unusual, first because of the seemingly minor incident that caused all this, and the widespread nature of her memory problems, to boot, with no identifiable structural damage on MRI scans. I enjoyed it though because it was a new world for me, but still in the area of the mind/brain. It may be a good introduction to a
K.E. Saxon
Feb 23, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Wow! What an incredible true-life story this is. The fact that Su Meck must rely on others who knew her to tell her the story of her life prior to the age of 22, when she had the accident that caused the traumatic brain injury is so sad, especially knowing how malleable memory is, and knowing how much of our perception of ourselves and who we are is based on our memory of our own experiences. This is as near to a birds-eye view of long-term amnesia and how it effects the person who has it as I'v ...more
Kathryn Featherston
May 21, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I felt such empathy for the author of this autobiographical account of what it is like to make a life out of the one you used to have but now have lost all memory of it. I also identified with her as I once lived in the area where she lived and so many things she spoke of were so familiar to me. If you have ever wondered what it would be like to total amnesia (I'm talking big-time amnesia like having to learn to read and write all over again), then this is a very personal and intense look at wha ...more
Jun 22, 2015 rated it really liked it
I Forgot to Remember by Su Meck and Daniel de Vise. This is an amazing and shocking first hand story of a young woman, mother of 2 and wife, who suffers a traumatic brain injury in a freak accident with a falling ceiling fan, and is brilliantly and entertainingly written. I read it in 2 days, hard to put down. I thank my friend Ruth, who has a granddaughter with TBI and short term memory impairment, and who helped me with a dear friend who had a stroke and short term memory loss, for recommendin ...more
Alicia Gard
Sep 19, 2015 rated it really liked it
Fascinating look at severe amnesia and traumatic brain injury......I cannot imagine living through everything Su has gone through, but this book gave such clear descriptions, I could put myself in her shoes and try to imagine not remembering anything before age 22. Not understanding what being a wife, mother, sister, daughter meant. She is brave and so are her children! As for her husband, well, it's not for me to judge. Excellent book though, well worth reading, especially if you have any inter ...more
Jul 18, 2015 rated it liked it
When Su Meck was a young wife & mother, the kitchen ceiling fan fell down right onto her head. That was the beginning of a long nightmare of forgotten memories. She could remember nothing of her past & had to re-learn how to do even basic things. Though her memory never returned, she learned to live a good life with the help of her husband, family (especially her two young children),
and her friends. A remarkable story.
Feb 05, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Su writes an incredible story of survival after a traumatic brain injury. She proves that you can do anything you set your mind to, despite having to relearn everything. The pure, raw emotion in this book makes you feel part of the story. She doesn't sugarcoat anything and instead makes you realize that despite her outward appearance, she is still struggling every day with a brain injury that happened thirty years ago.

A wonderful read.
Barbara Naugle
Nov 20, 2013 rated it really liked it
What a great book! This memoir helped me understand the depth of a head injury. Amazing! Well written, great stories and very personal revelations. I'll never look a head injury the same way! I had no idea an injury like this could be so long lasting. Good job, Su! Now I am waiting for the sequel to see how life continues to develop.
Jacki Jeli-fan
Nov 12, 2013 rated it really liked it
I recieved an advance copy of this book as a Goodreads giveaway. I recommend this book to all. The author Su Meck tells s candidly story of her life after a brain injury and how it affected everyone around her including the trials and triumphs of her rehab and personal life.
Apr 20, 2014 rated it it was amazing
This book pretty much blew my mind. Simply amazing to think that someone would have no memory of her first 23 years, not able to read, etc, and then is sent home to care for her family.
Nov 12, 2013 rated it it was ok
It was a difficult read. The author was very detached from the story. She suffers memory loss from an accident and wrote as if she was reporting a story on someone else.
Anna Crazier
Dec 19, 2013 rated it really liked it
Great interesting read
Feb 27, 2014 rated it liked it
Although this book was about a fascinating concept, I really wanted it to be a better book than it was. It started to feel somewhat repetitive and just wasn't as great as I was hoping it to be.
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