Ricky Dean from Taunton in Somerset has quite a rare predicament. Until three years ago, he barely got out of his family home. Why? Because if he leaves the house, he’ll get lost and probably never be able to return again.
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Since he was born, Ricky’s family sensed that something was wrong. He was starved of oxygen, and when he was still very young, Ricky was already diagnosed with autism. But the extent of his memory loss was fully revealed when his parents took him for a full memory scan at the age of 11.
Ricky suffers memory loss called anterograde amnesia, the type of amnesia where the brain is unable to create new memories after the event that triggered the amnesia. However, the long-term memories prior to that are safe.
To cope with the situation, Ricky made tons of to-do lists. He admitted that dealing with the condition can be difficult at times. Luckily, he has supportive family and friends. And amazingly enough, Ricky has five GCSEs (General Certificate of Secondary Education) despite the bind he is in.
Ricky also carries with him a phone full of notes with alarms to remind him of what he should do next.
Ricky explains that if his lists weren’t there, performing even the simplest of tasks, like having lunch of brushing his teeth, would be impossible.
But it gets kinds bad when he can’t retain new and important moments. New memories of the good times with family and friends would simply be lost.
Although there is no known cure for Ricky’s amnesia, he is still able to live out a normal life with the help of the people surrounding him. With nothing but to-do lists in his hands, Ricky is living a very good life for a young man lost in time.