Don’t feel bad. I heard about a lady in England who was expert at archaic languages, she could read and write 16 ancient languages. Her professor was fluent in 20.
I am a knitting linguist, I think. But then you can see more easily what to do to solve knitting problems. It isn’t for everybody.
Knitting involves long-term use of the hands which just happens to cause more of the brain to be active, a significant part of the outer surface and this extra blood circulation (I think because it is health) creates clarity of thought at the same time a state of peace. And there are no apparent withdrawal symptoms except I want to get back to it later in the day. It doesn’t make one crazy, it helps keep one, in this crazy world, sane. Meanwhile I listen to lectures on all kinds of things while I knit or music I love.
When more blood goes to the brain, it carries more nourishment upstairs as well as oxygen. It is being postulated that this has a long term effect on the brain as knitters are showing less signs of forgetfulness with aging and therefore are more free of Alzheimer’s disease. If you were playing an instrument using most of your fingers, like a piano, or doing a lot of typing, similar benefits for neurons could be reached. However, I can knit for 4 hours straight, I don’t play the piano for that length of time. But there is something about yarn also, and wool yarn in particular, and even knitting with natural wood or bamboo needles which seem a positive help as why expose yourself to chemicals if you don’t have to?
There are generations of Alzheimer’s on my dad’s side of the family, my maternal grandmother died of it too. So I am 64 and before I began my knitting project to heal my arthritis by knitting, (which worked) that it would do the same for my memory issues. I could not add any longer without a calculator, now I am back to doing sums in my head even multiplying and dividing. Knitting seems to help release endorphins and it relaxes me enough to go to sleep. I am an insomniac otherwise.
So knitting it is saving me on day at a time. I think I may have a book in me about it, what do you think?
But I’d have to find other people who are like me to join in my experiment. Thinking about joining the local Senior Group and seeing if I can teach some who attend who are of my age to knit. If I can involve them in a study, and they show similar benefits, maybe we can whip AD. It may not help everyone, but then no drug does either. But in the meanwhile it seems to help people who were suffering from depression and panic disorders also become happy.
There have been studies showing that teaching knitting helps children who have learning disabilities to succeed and also Autism. Children are being taught how to order their brains and aging adults benefits from the same activity. In Europe, knitting is taught as part of the curriculum in Scandinavian countries and they have higher test scores. I don’t think it is genetics, I think it is knitting. Knitters also seem to be able to recognize patterns outside of knitting faster so it isn’t just helpful in reading charts of various kinds. The skills seem to transfer towards mathematics.
In the meanwhile, knitters are very helpful people which helpfulness is becoming more rare. We don’t just make things for ourselves, so it involves some altruistic traits which are likely as healing as the activity itself.
If we have 80 or so years, it isn’t forever, but will seem like it is as time drags when we are miserable, not if we are happy.