This is definitely that the cable needle is too small. Nobody I know can hold the cable needle too, you just drop it to the front or back. With size 11 needles- I would use a pencil as your cable needle, or a circular needle (not necessarily for your project, but AS the cable needle, you can thread it through so the needles hang and the stitches are on the cable itself so you can let it go if the needles are small), or a stick...you get the idea. Sometimes when I use a weird object as a cable needle I put those stitches back up on the left needle when it's time to work them. Don't be afraid to MacGuyver your knitting.
It isn't you, I promise! You can do it!
OTN: - Tree of Life afghan, socks, afghan for Dad, Tura Maeve baby dress, alpaca Winter Mountains scarf, Frida poncho
Recently FO- Quinn cabled bag, Evangeline fingerless gloves (2 pairs), Topknot baby hats, pompom & earflap hats, 8 pairs of socks, Baby Folkwear Caftan, Debbie Bliss Baby Shawl (blanket)
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