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Coming Back to the Table

Coming Back to the Table

The role of an artist is to take what it is that they believe in and put it out there so the world can savor it. For Torill Myre, this art form is not just about nutritious and delicious waffles- it is about the art of coming back to the table. It is about connection.

Connection, true connection, is meaningful. It transcends space, to do lists, hierarchy and judgements– it is intentional. When we slow down, we stop the noise. When we prepare a table and eat ‘family style’ we have a shared physical and emotional connection that leaves us feeling nourished and satiated in stomach, head, heart and soul. It is a practice worth practicing. 

Upon meeting Torill, I instantly experienced a connection. There is a warmth, authenticity and care that permeates every conversation. I feel known and I want to know. I reflect on that and am confident that is because every time we meet, we come around her table- over tea and mixed nuts. We chat business. We chat about life. We share in each other’s story and we solve the world’s problems (or at least our own immediate world). She is committed to a future that is nourished and beautiful; and I am captivated. I sat down with her to further pick her brain on human connection and she shared with me the following:

 

What is a memory you have of true, authentic connection?


Two of my really close girlfriends and I spent two days at my friends cabin a while back.  We had no internet or tv and we spent the time visiting, hiking and sitting around the table eating great food that we all enjoyed.  There was no rush and our conversations were intimate and rich. Being with friends who love and support us allows us to show up with all our imperfections and fear.  That is the foundation for true connection.

 

What, in your opinion, is the biggest barrier to us feeling truly connected?


Time and lack of presence (distraction from technology and overactive minds due to business).  When we are distracted because of all the things we are thinking about and all the interruptions- it is almost impossible to truly connect.

 

Describe a moment when someone truly showed up for you? In such a way that you could not say no? What does that teach you? What should that teach others?


I have had some really challenging times in my life.  After my son broke his neck our friends rallied around us and showed up with food and other tokens of their love and support.  One of the most important lessons I learned then was that when we’re going through hard times we have the least capacity to ask for support.  So when our friends just did it for us, it meant we couldn’t say no- and for us, in those days it was a true life saver.


When do you feel most known?


When I am with my close friends and family who want to know how I am really doing. They take the time to ask meaningful questions and hold the space for me to be and answer.

 

You have lots of reasons you believe coming back to the table is important, all of which we are going to share more on during this blog series; however, what resonates with you as the number one reason?


The importance of feeling a sense of love and belonging.


Why waffles, in terms of fostering connection?


It’s one of our most favourite comfort foods that instantly creates an emotional association of warmth and comfort. It’s a food that the whole family usually enjoys and one that we associate with time together-usually on the weekends. It makes it easy to bring everyone to the table when they smell the goodness of a waffle cooking.


Is there anything you are reading that (you’d suggest others read to learn more about true connection?) is inspiring you about this topic?

I am currently reading a book called “Lost Connections” that speaks to the misunderstanding of depression and what the true root of the problem is.  It’s actually such a simple concept, but easier said than done to do something about. Bottom line, it’s critical for our health to take regular time for quality time with family and friends and the most important routine for family connection is time around the table during dinner and breakfast/brunch.

 

I was also inspired by some great Ted Talks on this topic, one of which was a Ted Talk by a Norwegian woman, Karen Dolva.  The topic is called “All the Lonely People”. Isolation and loneliness is a big societal problem, one which we all need to be mindful of and do what we can to combat. It is a real health problem and one we need to do something about.

Blog Contributed By: Jaralyn Monkman, mynourish.co

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