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In this article, Abbie (Community and Events Manager) speaks to Ann about the role Mirthy has played in her life since becoming a member.

Ann

1) How old are you and where are you based?

68 years old, living in Northamptonshire.

2) What would you describe as the main challenges you face these days?

Being isolated as an only carer for at least the past 15 years (long time before diagnosis), with my husband who has mixed Dementia and demanding behaviour. 

3) When did you join Mirthy?

I found Mirthy on Facebook and joined 14th April 2022.

4) How has Mirthy affected your day-to-day life and general wellbeing? What has changed for you since joining Mirthy?

Mirthy gives me something to focus on day to day whenever possible and takes me away from my caring role. Mirthy has helped me regain past interests and inspired me to take care of myself and maintain my wellbeing. It gives me something to plan for and look forward to. I now feel like a part of a community that cares for me.

5) Which events do you attend?

I am only able to watch recordings so have not attended live events yet. After trying out many events I am settling into regularly following:

6) What has been the physical impact of attending these events (if applicable)?

The fitness events enable me to try out new ways of keeping fit other than yoga; I attended a weekly class before caring took over my life and I became too exhausted to continue at home. Mirthy’s recorded events offer the chance to have personal trainers online whenever I have the time at home, day and night, allowing me to regain my fitness and get back into shape. I am pre-diabetic, with high blood pressure, so Mirthy has been a valuable tool for my physical wellbeing.

7) What has been the mental health impact of attending these events?

Mentally, the events have awakened my past interests in life. Before Mirthy, our world was shrinking and I was very low in myself, as my husband entered the later stages of dementia. Mirthy gives me something to plan and think about; it also provides me with events to share when on the phone with my family. My brain is now more mentally stimulated.

8) As a full-time carer, what is the value of the service Mirthy provides?

Mirthy has become an important part of my life, making me feel that there is a life I can lead whilst caring. My husband cannot hold conversations or allow me space to do anything while he is awake; so Mirthy is there day and night. I have an online community 24/7 and I no longer feel alone in my home.

9) Would you recommend Mirthy to a friend and what would you say?

I would recommend Mirthy to others, telling them of all the wonderful, varied events - delivered by friendly, expert instructors and lecturers. The fantastic, easy-to-follow website gives great administrative support. The seven-day recording service also provides ongoing support from happy, smiling presenters. It is a joyful place to belong.

10) Are there any other details you'd like to share?

Please keep going and growing - I am sure everyone with membership would miss Mirthy should it cease to be. I think I will be a member for life even when my caring role is over; it is the perfect antidote to loneliness when housebound.