Camre Curto lost her long and short term memories but her husband wanted to bring back memories into her life.
There is nothing more beautiful than to be loved by a person you have committed to, who would do anything in the world to keep you in their life regardless of how cruel and heartbreaking the circumstances are. Camre Curto from Michigan is fortunate to have married that person in her life. But a tragic turn of events in their happily married life has left her with absolute no memory of her loving husband, Steve.
According to People, Camre was pregnant in 2012 with her now 7-year-old son Gavin when the tragic incident occurred. Her pregnancy was absolutely normal until the third trimester. However, 33 weeks into her pregnancy, things took a different turn. She began experiencing unnaturally frequent nausea, even for a pregnant woman. Camre found it difficult to breathe and went into a grand mal seizure. Steve, her then-fiancee, rushed her to the hospital. While the family was worried about Camre, the life of their baby too was a concern.
The baby was immediately delivered by surgery, but what they did not foresee was Camre losing her memory. Speaking to Good Morning America, Steve recalls, "When they brought her out of the coma, and she started to wake up, something wasn’t right. She had no idea who she was or that she had just given birth. She didn’t know who I was or who her parents were."
Doctors found that the new mother had undiagnosed preeclampsia, a pregnancy-related high blood pressure disorder. Steve was heartbroken. But he stepped up and filled in for his unwell partner.
"I basically lived at the hospital. They want the child to bond with the mom after birth but Camre wasn’t able to be there, so I did skin-to-skin with him and did all the feedings," said Steve. After Camre was discharged from the hospital, life was not the same for the couple. Having lost her long term and short term memory, she had no recollection of life before the pregnancy. Though she was physically well, she could not even remember the simple tasks of daily life like brushing or bathing. However, Steve was not going to give up on the woman he loved.
"When I met Camre, she made me want to be a better person and that’s what I loved about her. Then this happened and I just wasn’t going to give up hope that we could regain what we had. This girl, she has no idea who I am but she loves me and we’re going to make this work," said Steve. He supported his partner while she worked with occupational therapist Jessica Smith to build back her life. "We were sitting on the couch and she told me, ‘I don’t who you are but I know I love you,'" Steve revealed. "That has always stuck with me. That has been the driving force behind everything."
After trying simple tricks like writing down and keeping a joint calendar, Camre managed to remember her son and partner. She has also managed to develop a great relationship with her son.
However, the realization of losing her memories took a toll on her emotionally.
"She started to realize that she couldn’t remember and that made it more difficult because she knew what’d she lost. Memories are everything to us and most people take them for granted, I know I did. That’s one reason I’m sharing the story," said Steve. He also added that her medications to control her seizures made the recovery even more difficult. “One of the things that she always tells me [is] that it’s extremely difficult to not remember your son’s first steps or the first time he said, ‘Mama,’ because that’s really what moms talk about sometimes. So we role play conversations and do them over and over,” said Steve.
As she was slowly recovering, Steve decided to propose to Camre in 2013. The woman readily agreed and the duo tied the knot in September 2015. However, Steve knew that her memory loss would take away all the good times from her. Camre's condition had also caused short term memory loss. While she already has no recollection of her life before the birth of her son, she was also unable to retain the memories of her son growing up.
The loving husband wanted her to remember everything in their 10-year relationship, from their first date to the birth of their son and even their fun wedding. So he decided to write a book for her. It was abook about their life together, the good times and the tough times, the hurdles they faced since the incident and the memories they shared together.
The book, But I Know I Love You, was released on their fourth wedding anniversary in September 2019. He wanted his son and wife to know everything about their life even if he was not with them one day. “If something ever happened to me, I want my wife and child to know what we’ve been through since the beginning to get where we are today,” said the 38-year-old.
“This is the true-life account of one man’s determination to create a family with the woman he loves even though she doesn’t have a clue who he is, or even they have a child, Steve Curto proves that real love isn’t hearts and flowers, but showing up every day, doing what has to be done, and never letting go,” said the book description.
“Everything in the book is a memory of what we’ve gone through and what I’ve missed. I enjoy [reading] it very much, but … sometimes it’s hard for me because it shows me everything that we have been through and that I don’t have inside of me,” said the 31-year-old about the book. For Camre, the book is a recollection of her lost memories It remains her of the ups and downs of their life as a family. Though it makes her feel sad, she is happy to have had the support of her husband and her son.
“With my husband and son with me, that is what is getting me through all this. Every time I see Gave and Steve, there’s a huge smile on my face and inside me. The love of family is what means the most and what is getting me through the day,” said Camre.