GREENSBORO, N.C. — Caitlin Little was always an excellent student. Good thing, because that got her far ahead enough in her studies that she’s on course to graduate with her class at Southeast Guilford High School, even though her schooling has been largely perfunctory for the last three years.
Caitlin was sitting on her sofa recently, going through an anatomy workbook she likes to study.
“These are the vital signs and sounds. Not all of them, of course,” she says as she flips through the pages, reading her notes.
“She’s extremely focused right now, ” said her mother, Jennifer, a teacher. “Her passion is being an EMT.”
If you’ve been following our story, you know that a cross country teammate accidentally bumped heads with Caitlin at a practice in October 2017. Almost from that moment, Caitlin’s memory has been destroyed. She’s had times where she could remember the day as she lived it but woke up the next morning with her brain resetting – yeah, like the Drew Barrymore character in the movie “50 First Dates.” Except for Caitlin and her family, this is real life. They need real answers. That has tested the entire family.
“I guess what’s changed in the last year is a deeper strength that I didn’t know I would have to have,” Jennifer said.
There are some things that Caitlin’s memory issues may have made a little easier.
“Caitlin doesn’t know COVID exists, we just don’t go out many places,” said her father, Chris.
“And that hasn’t changed a lot for us but, yeah, that’s true – for the last three years, we haven’t gone out a lot of places anyway,” Jennifer said.
But as they continue to search for healing, they have had moments that give them hope. Chris has been keeping notes on episodes to track Caitlin’s progress. One note from a trip they took out of town for treatment was particularly intriguing to Chris. He was up late, researching her condition and possible treatments as he does almost every night. And that’s when he noticed Caitlin coming from the bedroom she was sleeping in – in this house they had rented that Caitlin had never been in before that night.
“She got out of bed, walked directly to the kitchen of a house she doesn’t remember, opened the fridge, pulled out her bottle of tea that she doesn’t remember she has, poured a small glass of tea to drink it, ” Chris said, looking at his note for that night. “She put the lid back on the bottle, put it back in the fridge and I wrote in parenthesis, here, ‘how did she know where the kitchen was? How did she know where the bottle was?’ She paused to look at me, waved a little bit then walked down the dark hallway to her bedroom. Now, it was a straight shot but there were several ways she could have gone.”
Is that true progress? See what you think after watching this episode of Caitlin Can’t Remember.
A GoFundMe has been set up to help the Little family.
For previous stories and video:
Subscribe to the Caitlin Can’t Remember podcast in the iTunes store or Google Play and get updates on Caitlin’s condition and her family’s search for answers, or you can just click on the podcast player below.