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    Remembering vs not remembering

    The "What did you feel?" post has me thinking (again) about my memories of my accident. I remember absolutely nothing. Paramedic reports say that I was conscious, even walking around at the scene. I've always felt like there is some key pieces of the puzzle of my life missing because I can't remember the accident. I've tried so hard to remember, but there's just nothing there. About a year ago, I got a copy of the police report and then I tracked down and called a guy who came upon the scene. He was a bit of a chatterbox, and he remembered it well, so I got lots of info from him. But, talking to him didn't bring up any memories. My sister, who does remember, has said that she wishes she didn't remember. I've thought about seeking the help of a professional to help me remember, but I've wondered if it would be better to not remember.

    For those of you who were injured in some sort of accident, how do you feel about this subject? Thanks. This is a subject that's I've thought about for many many years and I can't seem to let it go.

    Shannon
    33 year old T4/5 complete
    25 years post
    0
    I remember at least some of my accident, and I wish I didn't.
    0%
    0
    I remember at least some of my accident, and I'm glad I do.
    0%
    0
    I don't remember anything, and I wish I did.
    0%
    0
    I don't remember anything, and that's just fine with me.
    0%
    0
    Undecided.
    0%
    0

    #2
    I'm also wondering why some people remember, and others don't. Doctor? Nurse? Anyone?

    Shannon
    33 year old T4/5 complete
    25 years post

    Comment


      #3
      Originally posted by Beaker:

      Paramedic reports say that I was conscious, even walking around at the scene.
      Excuse my ignorance, but if you were able to walk around at the scene, what happened after that to cause the paralysis?

      Comment


        #4
        I was injured in a downhill skiing accident. Last thing I remember is getting off the lift & taking the slope to the right. Don't remember when I came to my senses or realized what happened. Like you, I remained conscious, yet don't remember it.

        for me, it's a mixed blessing. I'm glad those memories aren't there to haunt me... just the aftermath.

        I took a psych class a few years ago where this type of amnesia was discussed. Unfortunately I don't remember the details, but there is a decent explanation for it.

        cheers,
        ~ scott

        Comment


          #5
          Elizabeth, apparently there were bone chips floating around in my back. The bone chips caused swelling and the swelling is what crushed my spinal cord. Had the docs removed those bone chips to prevent swelling, I wouldn't be paralyzed. I think it was a day after the accident when my legs started to "feel weird". Keep in mind this was a small town in WI, with doctors who were a little overwhelmed with the injuries the other people substained, and I guess they just missed my problem. As soon as they realized that I had more than just a broken arm, they put me in an ambulance and drove to a different hospital 2 hours away. Of course, this is only what I've been told. I don't remember any of it other than saying goodbye to my mom and the long 2 hour ambulance ride on the back board.

          Scott, I wish I could accept and be happy about not remembering. I don't know why I can't just let it be.

          Shannon
          33 year old T4/5 complete
          25 years post

          Comment


            #6
            I don't remember [being deprived of oxygen for about 10 minutes does that to you, I guess [img]/forum/images/smilies/wink.gif[/img]] the accident or anything after for the next 3 months. I do feel a sense of incompleteness not remembering any of it, and I wish -- with no reservations -- that I could remember what happened and the first half of my acute hospital stay.

            -Steven
            ...it's worse than we thought. it turns out the people at the white house are not secret muslims, they're nerds.

            Comment


              #7
              Don't remember anything, don't care to.

              There could be a few reasons why someone might not remember their SCI. If they hit their head, it could be some temporary amnesia from a mild head injury or concussion. Sometimes if there is no physiological reason it could be a psychological defense where the brain "shuts away" memories of experiences that would be too traumatics to relive.

              I'm oversimplifying, but I don't have much time to post right now.
              "The only true currency in this bankrupt world...is what you share with someone else when you're uncool." - Almost Famous

              Comment


                #8
                I dont remember anything about my accident, but I wish I did, I think it would bring about some sort of closure to what happened. I do find it interesting how I remember minutia from that day however. My accident occured right around 10pm, but I remember where my partner from work and I ate lunch that day, where we dillydallied until we got to the job we were supposed to do, and doing that job. I remember riding to/meeting up with the guys I rode with around 7pm that night, looking at some of the things we did to our bikes recently, and leaving our meeting place. After that everything is missing, with a few exceptions...I had a deja-vous experience when I retraced my steps following the route that I was supposed to have taken that night, I remember riding past a police station just before the 'interesting' piece of road I lead the group to, and I had a familiar feel to driving down the road that the accident occured on, even though that was the second time I took that road from that direction, the first was when I had my accident. Coming up on the crash scene when I was doing the retracing of my steps I was shocked by how that curve I crashed on surprised me and I let out an 'oh shit' seeing that. Apparently there is some ingrained recollection of what happened that night, but I cant get it to come to the surface. It would be so nice to remember what happened, but all I have is stories told by those that were there with me, the scene of the accident, and the marks on my leather jacket, gloves, and helmet I wore that night to figure out what happened/how I hit. I wish I had more. I was conscious after the accident according to my buddies, but apparently was in shock as I was not being too coherant. The cop that ended up taking the report told me that I started fading off before they loaded me on the ambulance, and didnt look too good. I think that my lack of memory was due to the traumatic experience, not a concussion or anything like that since there only was a minor scrape on my helmet and part of the face shield mechanism broke. Most of the damage done to me was due to stopping against the leading edge of a guardrail with my back at around 45 MPH or so. I am curious if hypnotism or something like that would be helpful in resurrecting my memory of the accident.

                Comment


                  #9
                  Well, I'm very happy to hear that I'm not the only one who is interested in remembering. I thought I was a freak for wanting those memories! I asked this same basic question at NM quite a while ago, and I think most people said they wish they didn't remember. Only 9 votes so far here, but I see that the "I don't remember, but wish I did", is the most popular.

                  As much as I want to fill in those pieces of the puzzle, I'm worried that those images and thoughts would haunt me.

                  I'm wondering if I can't remember because of a head injury. I was never told that I had a head injury, but why else would almost all my memories of the first 8 years of my life be wiped out too?

                  Andy, I've also wondered about hypnosis.

                  Shannon
                  33 year old T4/5 complete
                  25 years post

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Elizabeth , it is not unusual to have lower limb function after an injury . swelling and other trauma causes more damage . the prevention of this ongoing damage is why methylprednosole [ spelling ? ] is used .
                    thank you
                    dogger

                    every day i wake up is a good one .
                    Every day I wake up is a good one .

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Yeah, I really wish I remembered and knew just exactly what happened. I'm 10 years post and still from time to time wonder. Last thing I remember is leaving this party I was at, about 10 minutes away is where I had my accident. I have no memory of even driving on any of the roads I was on. In my case I'm sure It was a major concussion that wiped out my memory. Kind of like when football players get a concussion in a game and cant even remember playing in much earlier parts of the game.

                      Comment


                        #12
                        How About..I`m Reminded of my accident everyday I wake up!
                        "The Meaning of things lies not in things themselves,but in our attitude towards them"
                        "The Meaning of things lies not in things themselves,but in our attitude towards them"

                        Comment


                          #13
                          Starlight, I understand the psychological defense thing. If that is the case for me, I'm assuming those memories are there and can be uncovered. What if it's physiological though? Does that mean that there's no way to get those memories? Thanks.

                          Shannon
                          33 year old T4/5 complete
                          25 years post

                          Comment


                            #14
                            I don't remember being struck by the car which is probably a good thing. I'd hate to be haunted by images of a dark car with the red tail lights backing straight towards me and being too overwhelmed by fear, panic, terror?...to get out of the way. Or maybe I didn't hear or see it until it was too late. Either way it would be too traumatizing to relive although I am curious. I chose the undecided option.

                            I was able to move my legs after my injury too. I had voluntary control of all of my limbs for about two days after the accident. It was probably the way that I was moved or handled after the accident that lead to the paralysis. If today's protocol about moving injured people had been in effect during the 70's, my only injury would have been the concussion which I recovered from.

                            [This message was edited by seneca on 07-08-03 at 03:27 AM.]

                            Comment


                              #15
                              Originally posted by Beaker:

                              Starlight, I understand the psychological defense thing. If that is the case for me, I'm assuming those memories are there and can be uncovered. What if it's physiological though? Does that mean that there's no way to get those memories? Thanks.

                              Shannon
                              33 year old T4/5 complete
                              25 years post
                              In order to determine physiological damage you'd probably have to get some cognitive testing, plus a neurological exam (MRI, e.g.) before they can determine further.

                              As for "recovering" memories, I'm not really an expert on that area, but if you really want to go that route I would recommend getting a LOT of professional counseling first, just to make sure you will be able to handle it mentally (this goes for _anyone_ who is thinking of going this route).
                              "The only true currency in this bankrupt world...is what you share with someone else when you're uncool." - Almost Famous

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