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Carmel was diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease six and a half years ago – hear she talks to the NRF about how her diagnosis has impacted her life.
“I was diagnosed around six and a half years ago and I found it quite devastating at the time. I was just over 60 years of age. I was able to keep working for a few years with the medication as I really enjoyed my job as Library Assistant at the Gawler Library. However, we had moved further away from work, so the drive proved to be a bit difficult.
“I found it quite difficult to tell my friends and work colleagues about it. In fact, I have just told them recently. I wanted to travel once I had retired but I need to mindful about managing my energy levels. I can’t overdo it. So, I have just had to adapt my lifestyle.
“I have been coming to the art class here at Parkinson's SA
for the last two – three years. I just enjoy switching off, the concentration and you don’t need to pretend. It is a very caring environment. I feel comfortable here. I enjoy learning new things, it is interesting.
"I prefer the hands-on work with the clay compared to the watercolour painting.
“At home I enjoy sewing – I have taken up patchwork quilting. I enjoy the design process and matching the colours of the fabrics. I also go to the gym – exercise is great for Parkinson’s as you build new neural pathways and connections. I try to help myself as much as possible and keep brain fit,” Carmel said.
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