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Myrna Peeters - Clicking In All The Right Ways

Myrna Peeters is a 58 year old mother of five girls. With all her daughters grown up Myrna wanted to become a masseuse but arthritis meant it was too painful on her hands. For a while she was worried that it would get in the way of her real passion, knitting. Thankfully one of Myrna’s daughters had a solution that meant the knitting needles could keep clicking, unlike Myrna’s fingers.

I love…
spending time with my family, reading, cooking, socialising and walking my rescue dog Linus. Long walks on the beach with my Linus are wonderful.

I’m passionate about…
knitting. I’ve always adored knitting but eight years ago, by coincidence, I came across a shop near my home that sold beautiful high-quality wool. Having made this discovery I then found out the shop ran a ‘Stitch & B**ch’ class. It’s made up of lots of different nationalities and people from a wide age range from 21-58. And yes, I am the oldest. But they’re so welcoming to everyone who wants to get involved.

We meet…
every other week and catch up on what we’ve created during that time, which is a lot as we knit everywhere - on the bus, train, tram or at home. It’s a lot of fun, everybody brings food and drinks - which is great as we come from such different backgrounds so get to taste a lot of cuisines. And of course, it’s always fun, especially after a drink or two.

It’s lovely because...
I’ve made friends for life. It doesn’t matter where you’re from or what age you are because we all have one common interest that binds us. I find it very interesting how I can relate to everything from the 20 year-olds who keep me young with their tales of going out and having fun, the 30s who are busy with their careers and the knitters in their late 30s/40s who share their young family stories.

I was practicing to be a...
masseuse but found it was too painful for my hands. It got to the point where I couldn’t use my thumbs to massage at all - the strength needed and the pain that I felt was too much for me. Now I’m an officer manager at a chiropractic clinic.

When you get to my age…
You have to accept the body is going to start complaining about the miles on the clock. A lot of my joints have stiffened up a little bit. But the main pain is in my thumbs and fingers - you can see they’re swollen, distorted and there are these lumpy/pointy bits.

My arthritis kicked in…
premenopause - so 8 or 10 years now. The pain started getting worse and worse and worse. I could tell I’d lost strength in my hands. It felt like a constant pain but with certain movements it gets worse - for example opening a jar, peeling potatoes or lifting things, then I would feel a sharp, shooting pain through my hand.

It meant I couldn’t…
knit for prolonged periods of time. I had to do a bit then stop, a bit then stop. In between these times I would stretch out my hands. Chiropractor’s (my boss’s) orders. I was worried if it got any worse I would have to stop completely.

The pain is…
very frustrating. I’m 28 in my brain but my body with the pain, especially the shooting pain, really makes you feel old.

I discovered Flexiseq…
through my eldest daughter. Her boyfriend’s mum had been using it for a few months and couldn’t sing its praises highly enough so I thought I would give it a go.

I was sceptical
when I heard about Flexiseq. It took a week or two before I started to see a difference but when I did I couldn’t believe it. In an awful way you get used to the pain and over a few days I realised it wasn’t there as much. Now I don’t need to take so many breaks when I knit, which will probably worry my daughters who can expect made rather than bought Christmas presents this year. Sorry girls.

My advice if you have joint pain…
apart from using Flexiseq, which really is worth a try, is stretching. If you don’t move your hands and they’re in pain you’ll seize up. Your muscles will get shorter and it will become harder and harder to get them moving again. For me I have to keep moving, little and often. That’s why knitting and walking Linus offer me just the right amount of exercise to keep moving.

 

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