Becoming a mom for the first time should be a very unforgettable moment in a person’s life. For 38-year-old Camre Curto, however, that memory has been wiped.
After giving birth to her son, Camre couldn’t remember her fiancé’s name, or even that she’d just given birth.
“She didn’t know who she was, didn’t know who I was, didn’t know she even just gave birth to Gavin,” Steve, who is now her husband, told InsideEdition.com.
“It was like the eraser just came out,” Camre said of the experience.
After Camre’s doctors realized what was happening, they did tests on the new mom. They discovered that she had suffered brain damage during childbirth.
It caused her to lose her long-term memory, short-term memory, and ability to create new memories.
“This is a really, really rare case,” Camre’s occupational therapist, Jessica Smith, explained. “Every case is unique, right? But in the context of really having a baby and then this is what happens, Camre is the only case I’ve had in 10 years.”
What happened to Camre began when she was seven months pregnant in 2012. “She developed some nausea and stuff, and one day her throat was swelling,” Steve recalled. “Her mom took her down to the hospital real quick and she ended up having a grand mal seizure.” This type of event involves losing consciousness and having violent muscle contractions.
Doctors determined Camre had undiagnosed preeclampsia, a serious but common condition in pregnant women that causes high blood pressure and swelling in the legs and feet. When it went untreated, it turned into a rare preeclampsia where the high blood pressure led to seizures. She was given an emergency C-section and then put in a medically induced coma.
Steve learned that the swelling in her throat had prevented oxygen from getting to her brain. Coupled with the seizures, it became clear she’d suffered brain damage. She didn’t remember anyone, including her parents. They cared for her throughout her recovery, and Steve cared for Gavin.
Over the seven years since, Camre’s family has rallied around her. She’s relearned who everyone is, but she’s still working with occupational therapists on memory techniques. Steve began writing a book about their journey during that time, which Camre later helped him finish. But I Know I Love You was released last September.