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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 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.


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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 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.

30 review for I Forgot to Remember: A Memoir of Amnesia

  1. 5 out of 5

    Annie

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. There are two scales on which to rate memoirs: how well they are written and how interesting the author's life is. A few memoirists are excellent writers who have also been fortunate (or unfortunate) enough to have interesting life experiences. A few horrible memoirs are poorly written and terribly boring. Most fall somewhere between the two, and "I Forgot To Remember" is on that spectrum of middle ground. The subject matter is undeniably engaging and leaves you wondering what you would be life There are two scales on which to rate memoirs: how well they are written and how interesting the author's life is. A few memoirists are excellent writers who have also been fortunate (or unfortunate) enough to have interesting life experiences. A few horrible memoirs are poorly written and terribly boring. Most fall somewhere between the two, and "I Forgot To Remember" is on that spectrum of middle ground. The subject matter is undeniably engaging and leaves you wondering what you would be life if you started your life over, as a blank slate, right now. However, the writing is not great; I think it is a fantastic effort given how Su has had to relearn everything from drinking from a cup on up. That this memoir exists at all is an amazing feat she should absolutely be proud of. However, it gets a bit tedious at times, as many memoirs do. It was a very quick read, though, so I don't regret the time I spent with Su on her journey back to herself. On a more personal note, I understand why she has chosen to stay in her marriage but it really was a bit difficult to read about her husband putting them hundreds of thousands of dollars in debt secretly to pay for strippers, hookers, and secret girlfriends. I know it is a memoir but I kind of found myself wishing it was a novel so it could turn out differently. I wanted a happy ending where she dumped his ass and found someone who didn't ever verbally abuse her or physically attack her in his sleep. Yikes.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Jeanette (Now on StoryGraph)

    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 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 are and no recognition of the people who say they are your family. You don't know what your likes and dislikes are, what your childhood was like, or what your basic personality is like. You no longer know how to read, do simple arithmetic, prepare food, or behave in social situations. Nor do you have any recall of ever having known how to do these things. And after MRIs have been done, the doctors tell your husband it's a psychiatric condition. This is what happened to Su Meck in 1988, after a falling ceiling fan gave her a traumatic brain injury (TBI). This book chronicles her struggle to be a wife and mother with no memory of what the words marriage, motherhood, sex, or even love meant. For many years she was like an automaton, mimicking the behaviors of those around her, with no understanding of why she was supposed to do and say those things. The first part of the book is very interesting, as Su explains what it means to have severe amnesia, and the disorientation she felt every minute of every day. As the book progresses, it gets mired down in the mundane details of married life and raising kids. The dailiness of her account grows tedious at times. I would rather have learned more about how, specifically, she regained some of her basic skills. For example, she says it took her many years to learn how to read again, but she doesn't describe how that re-learning evolved. The story is still well worth reading despite a sometimes lagging pace. For twenty years after her accident, Su Meck kept her struggle with amnesia a secret from almost everyone. Part of her purpose in writing the book was to let people with similar problems know they're not alone and can reach out to others for support and guidance. I applaud her for the effort, and for taking on the challenge of writing a book for which she had to rely almost entirely on the memories of family and friends.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Cynthia

    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 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 guy lying next to me is, what I am supposed to do on any particular day. I don't know how I would have handled something that all-encompassing. There is not a single aspect of daily life that it wouldn't have affected. But Su Meck knows. She dealt with it. She continues to deal with it and she always will deal with it. Her story is the stuff of nightmares. From medical staff deeming her 'fixed' simply because nothing tangible was evident on MRI to her lightning headaches and blackouts to her inability to remember her daily routine without extensive notes to times she found herself unable to read simple words, it is simply horrifying. But her story is also full of hope. She is an extremely courageous lady with the inner strength of Hercules. She might say that she did what she did because she didn't know what else to do. And that may well be the truth, but it doesn't mean that she didn't have a reserve of strength and resolve upon which to draw. She shows us that it is possible to not only survive a traumatic brain injury with significant residuals but to thrive. The book is simply written and her life flows on every page. You sense her bewilderment, her confusion, her fear. She shows us how she's compensated for her memory loss, how she learns to remember again. And that is remarkable. Recommended reading. This one is going up as my staff pick when it's released.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Rebecca

    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 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 fan fell on her head. Much of the book’s early section is reconstructed from hospital medical records. Having entered with partial paralysis, horrible headaches, and extremely limited vocabulary, Meck improved enough that doctors released her within three weeks, recording that her long-term memory “seems fairly unaffected.” Meck expresses outrage at her treatment, in her typically sarcastic, slang-filled style: “I was the goddamned valedictorian of head injury patients!” How could doctors have overlooked her total amnesia? The accident created such a rupture in Meck’s identity that she refers to having lived two lives. Her techie husband, Jim, calls her “Su 2.0.” And, indeed, her personality seems to have undergone fundamental change: before, she was a rebel – a pot-smoking college drop-out, married at 19; after, she was clean-living and compliant. Returned to a childhood state, she had to relearn everything. Mostly she watched others to see how she should behave. She became a pro at acting normally. Yet every few days ‘lightning strikes’ left her unconscious on the floor. Her children had to take care of her as well as themselves. It’s an unsettling book; perhaps the most disturbing element is Meck’s marriage to Jim. Clueless about finances and unsuspicious about Jim’s months-long work trips, Su was flabbergasted to learn he’d blown most of their money on strip clubs and affairs. He also has “sleep drunkenness,” which causes him to shout and hit people in his sleep. It seems something of a miracle that they’ve been married 30 years – and that Jim didn’t object to this memoir’s frank portrayal of his mistakes. Meck rebuilt her confidence by taking classes at Montgomery College. After two decades of concealing the accident, trying desperately to be like everyone else, she found freedom in telling her story. She was approached by a Washington Post reporter (coauthor Daniel de Visé), and her experience became front-page news in 2011. Now a Smith College student, she continues sharing her life story to raise awareness of traumatic brain injury. (I feature this book, along with David Stuart MacLean’s The Answer to the Riddle is Me, in my latest BookTrib article, on amnesia in recent books and films.)

  5. 4 out of 5

    Jessica

    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 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 some serious denial going on, or what?), anger-lots of that-, sadness, and thankfully, also hope. A whole range of emotions. I recommend this book to anyone who enjoys an interesting memoir, but I'm sure it's of special interest to those who know someone with a traumatic brain injury. But warning, since Su is still relatively young (late 40s), at the conclusion of the book you might find yourself asking "What's next??" Hopefully nothing but the best. I applaud you Su Meck for bringing light to the consequences of a TBI- I knew nothing about TBIs before this book, and at least now, I am a little more educated.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Chihoe Ho

    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 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 empathetic, and it was inspiring seeing a person slowly come out of adversity with determination and the support of loved ones, even if it is still a constantly evolving story. What leaves me underwhelmed is that there was a missed opportunity to be of something more enriching than it had presented itself since I am unsure if there is anything groundbreaking to learn from here.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Ashleigh

    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. 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.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Sonya Watkins

    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.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Liralen

    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 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 knows who she was pre-injury because of other people's memories. I've taken so long to write this review in large part because I am still struggling to put what I want to say about it into words, and also in part because so much of my reaction has nothing to do with the writing (or other things that the author could control) but with the appalling lack of basic understanding that she faced from the people who should have been responsible for her post-injury, and I'm not sure how productive it is to focus on that in a review. At times it feels as though Meck is still figuring that out -- what went right and wrong after her memory loss -- because for such a long time she had nothing to compare against, and nobody realised that. This is a book about memory loss and rebuilding a life with no road map, no baseline, and in that sense it's both sad and triumphant. But it's also ends up being about the basic failure of doctors and family to understand how to support someone with TBI, and on that end it's much, much sadder. How do you release from hospital, without outside support, a woman who not only doesn't have memories of childhood but also doesn't know she's supposed to have memories of childhood? I wish we could also understand the woman Meck was before her injury -- though of course that's impossible, and if it were possible this would be a very different book. I received a free copy of this book via a Goodreads giveaway.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Caroline Barron

    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 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 explanation for her style?): “A big part of the problem was that I continued (for years) to have an incredibly literal mind” (124)”. The book sure reads that way. I tried to keep in mind she simply cannot remember the early part of the story and had to rely on other people’s stories and banal medical notes. I don’t mind these techniques but the book could have been more entertainingly put together. For example, rather than reel out the content of the medical notes, a graphic or reproduction of the notes would break things up. I wonder at co-writer de Vise’s input; it is logical to think that as a ‘writer’ he could have better directed Meck’s structure and voice. And then there’s the absentee husband: cheater, liar, big spender. And, worst of all, he uplifted Meck and the children to live in chaotic Cairo when he knew that Meck only survived with routine and the familiarity of home. I get that he was young when his wife changed forever and that he didn’t imagine life to turn out like it did, but you know what? Take the head injury out of the equation and I bet he’d still have done some of those things. It’s like Meck was told foreshadowing is the writer’s number one technique – she makes hints about her husband all through the book so you expect what happens, along with a major reaction. And then she hints and hints about the ex-boyfriend…and you expect a major reaction. But it doesn’t happen. This aspect of the story left me feeling disappointed and expecting more from this incredible woman. Four for content, and one for the writing technically equals 2.5, but it gets a 2 from me.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Tracy

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. This memory has gotten some pretty nice reviews, but I don't think it quite lives up to them. Su Meck suffered a closed head injury when she was in her early 20s. With little the doctors could do, she returned home with no memory of her former life, family or friends. Complicating the matter was her inability to read, write, use a fork, recognize objects in a house, remember her way home, understand social cues or deal with an increasingly difficult husband. She never regains her memory although This memory has gotten some pretty nice reviews, but I don't think it quite lives up to them. Su Meck suffered a closed head injury when she was in her early 20s. With little the doctors could do, she returned home with no memory of her former life, family or friends. Complicating the matter was her inability to read, write, use a fork, recognize objects in a house, remember her way home, understand social cues or deal with an increasingly difficult husband. She never regains her memory although she does eventually learn to function and twenty years later returns to college. The problem with this book is that there is no clear narrative about how she learns anything--and probably with good reason as she still suffers from severe memory issues. It was interesting, but ultimately unsatisfying because of two factors: it was hard to imagine how she was able to relearn things with the level of disability she describes and her husband really came off as a jackass. I actually cannot believe the things she wrote about him and that she didn't leave him. The things she wrote about her husband were things I would hope kids would never know about their dad.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Lynn Genheimer

    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 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 try to find out "Who am I ?"

  13. 4 out of 5

    Ericka

    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!

  14. 5 out of 5

    Rashmi

    Wishing everyone a very happy new year. Here’s my first book for this wonderful new year and new decade. Happy 2021 and Happy reading! I Forgot to Remember is a true story of a young girl named Su who suffers a traumatic brain injury (TBI) after a ceiling fan falls on her head. She is 22, married with two very young sons. She loses all memory of her life for the those 22 years of her life. This is her story and her struggles as she tries to relearn everything - she can’t read, she can barely writ Wishing everyone a very happy new year. Here’s my first book for this wonderful new year and new decade. Happy 2021 and Happy reading! I Forgot to Remember is a true story of a young girl named Su who suffers a traumatic brain injury (TBI) after a ceiling fan falls on her head. She is 22, married with two very young sons. She loses all memory of her life for the those 22 years of her life. This is her story and her struggles as she tries to relearn everything - she can’t read, she can barely write, she can’t tie her shoe laces because she doesn’t know how. Her journey is painful to read - you marvel at the mysteries of the brain but her struggles are so real and seem so unfair. You don’t know what to make of the emotional and sometimes physical abuse by her husband who was all of 24 when she had the accident. It’s disturbing. However, you can’t but help but really admire her grit and determination to get things done. She does well if she has a schedule, her young 3 year old son and later her younger son and daughter, literally do all they can to keep her out of trouble. It’s almost them doing the parenting. She decided to go to college and graduated in her 40s. She still has no recollection of her life before the accident. The brain is complex but it really fascinates me and I liked the book.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Nat

    The story is well told, and a true story, albeit terrifying and saddening, rather than uplifting at the end as the book cover implied. Such is life, but it was too disturbing for me to reread.

  16. 5 out of 5

    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 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, this is a story of a family’s struggle to cope are with a horrendously debilitating injury and this is a story of domestic violence – Su, I know you probably dont want to hear that but the moment I started reading your story the warning bells rung loud and clear to me… such manipulation and control and anger… Apparently Jim (the husband) agreed to have all these reflections of behaviour and attitudes “on record” (p.274), for me that does not excuse the behaviour. Su, you also reflect here on why you stay with Jim…I leave that you the reader to absorb and contemplate. My voice clearly echoes the feelings this book has stirred up. This is an extraordinary book. Su you are living an extraordinary life; good luck and I hope you do find love. This is the perfect book club read – I know it will educate and it will definitely create debate… and evoke many feelings. Reading/book club notes for this book can be found here: http://books.simonandschuster.com.au/...

  17. 5 out of 5

    Robby Hamlin

    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 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 recovery began. My amnesia was so brief, perhaps a matter of weeks, and I had no fear that it might not be fully restored. Yet to this day I am mindful that some event from my first 21 years, until now absent, will come back. We all could say that we don't know what or who we don't know. Events like winning the lottery or the like can produce long lost friends, relatives or previously unknown creditors. But the extraordinary life of the author is no such tidy or potentially comical topic of conversation. The story of how she has survived and thrived and risen to so many challenges in her life contains an improbable realization that at her "birth" she already has a husband and is the mother of two children. It is a fascinating book - you just have to read it. Thank you, Su, for giving your readers the gift of your story.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Kathy

    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 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 made me shudder, and I'm trying to figure out why; notably the true confession part of her husband, but also I think the absolute horror of the whole situation: I mean, imagine waking up one day in the hospital with no memory at all of your past. It happens in the movies, true, but seldom in real life. And the book sort of made me uncomfortable (yes, I must be a bad person) in the way that someone with a horrible injury sitting in front of me when I can't do a thing makes me inwardly squirm. So interesting for that; it does make you examine yourself. But..oh, in some ways I wish I hadn't read it at all.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Kathryn Featherston

    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 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 what such a situation entails. I read it in a day because I totally dropped everything else I had to do - it was completely engrossing.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Margaret

    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 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 recommending this book. I recommend it to all for the inside information on memory loss and the beautiful writing.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Alicia Gard

    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 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 interest in brain injuries.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Melissa

    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. 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.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Lola

    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.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Barbara Naugle

    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. 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.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Michelle

    What an incredible story! Thank you Su Meck for peeling back the layers of your life and letting us into your life. I felt helpless as I read the struggles you went through and the frustrations. I hope your life goes on to be better than the past. This is a simply wonderful look at the results of an accident.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Jacki Jeli-fan

    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.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Jeanne

    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.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Traci

    I recieved this book for free from Goodreads and I absolutely enjoyed it. Seeing things from Su's point of view definitely made me realize how hard things were and still are for her. Very good book I recieved this book for free from Goodreads and I absolutely enjoyed it. Seeing things from Su's point of view definitely made me realize how hard things were and still are for her. Very good book

  29. 4 out of 5

    Cynthia

    For some reason I enjoy memoirs written by or about people who suffer traumatic brain injury (TBI). This memoir, to be published in February 2014, is a good addition to that sub genre. Recommended!

  30. 4 out of 5

    Anna Crazier

    Great interesting read

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