Claire Muffet-Reece from Braintree, Essex, thought she had caught a cold from her youngest son and was showing flu-like symptoms so she went to rest. But when her husband couldn’t wake her, she had to fight for her life
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Two weeks later, a mother-of-two went to bed feeling uncomfortable, waking up 20 years later with her memories wiped.
Claire Muffet-Reece, 43, started suffering from “cold-like symptoms” in March 2021 after contracting the virus from her son, Max, and decided to take a break.
But when her husband Scott tried to wake her the next morning, she was still unconscious.
Telling their story in Steph’s Packed Lunch, Scott recalls: “She became increasingly comatose and she went to bed the night before Father’s Day and in the morning I couldn’t wake her.”
The panicked husband called an ambulance and Claire was taken to the Royal London Hospital. When she arrived, she had several seizures and was put on a ventilator for a week.
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Claire, a freelance journalist, was put into a coma in hopes her body would start to heal – and fortunately, 16 days later she woke up.
But even though she’s conscious, the mother isn’t—and can’t remember the most basic facts about her own life.
Claire, from Braintree in Essex, said: “I can’t remember my family’s faces but I was asking about our cats – one of them was put to sleep a few weeks before and three years ago. before. “
Although she recognized Scott, she couldn’t remember his proposal, their wedding date, or the birth of their children.
“I can’t remember the holidays or anything like that. I can’t remember 9/11, Covid or lockdown,” she said.
Although the mother joked that “fortunately” she forgot to teach the children at home.
Scott recalls the horror of seeing his wife in a coma – without knowing what had happened to her.
“I initially thought she was having a stroke and when they first brought her to the hospital they thought it was a brain bleed but that was ruled out,” he said.
“For the first week they didn’t know what was going on.”
Eventually, Claire was diagnosed with a virus called encephalitis that attacked her brain – and Scott was relieved when his wife woke up.
However, he describes the heartbreak of realizing that she can’t remember the last 20 years of her life.
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He said: “She was talking about family members who had died in the present tense and I had to announce that they were no longer alive.
“I had to sit down and tell her who died and she grieve a second time.
“The most important thing is to have her around and we are trying to make new memories, by watching movies, watching and pictures to see if the memories come back or so she can relive them. think it over again or not.”
Recalling the moment she opened her eyes, Claire said she was hallucinating – and even started telling people Phil Collins was her cousin.
She also thought that the ceiling above her hospital bed was infested with wasps.
Claire spent her final year recuperating at home with Scott and the boys, but her memory is still intact.
“I can be myself in the pictures but don’t remember being there,” she explains, adding that people often ask her if she can remember them.
She said her neurologist told her she should be able to remember things now – but the memories haven’t come.
“It really keeps me focused on the future, and if I can’t get my memories back, I’ll make new ones,” she said.
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Claire also had trouble with her short-term memory and had to give up driving while recovering from encephalitis.
“It’s as serious as meningitis but people don’t know about it,” she said.
Despite their lives being turned upside down, Claire and Scott manage to see the funny side – when Scott jokes that he’ll wrap Claire’s expensive handbags and “give them back” to her to look at. like “the best husband in the world”.
https://www.mirror.co.uk/news/real-life-stories/i-went-bed-cold-woke-26306740 'I went to bed with a cold and woke up with no memory of the past 20 years'