Meghan Markle has a habit of sliding into the philosophical mode; of gently tugging at the world’s brittle heartstrings.
Earlier this week, the Duchess of Sussex did exactly that, when she opened up about her “hopes, fears, and insecurities” while visiting a baking workshop for disadvantaged women.
Sporting a dark apron, the duchess joined in on an intimate session at the Luminary Bakery in East London, where she heard the women share stories about drug abuse, homelessness, and being in prison, according to The Daily Telegraph.
One woman in particular, named Tanya, was in tears. As she recounted to the group, Tanya had been repeatedly stabbed by an ex-partner who is now serving time in prison. Markle, who has long been involved in mental health initiatives, shared a bit of wisdom.
“We get into this habit of wanting things done immediately nowadays. There’s a culture of instant gratification, of the instant fix,” she explained. “But we aren’t mechanical objects that need to be fixed. You’re a wounded creature that needs to be healed, and that takes time.”
Luminary Bakery is anything but foreign to Markle. The 38-year-old mom selected it to appear in British Vogue’s “Forces For Change” September issue, citing its ongoing efforts to help some of the country’s most vulnerable women, many of whom have experienced things like homelessness, violence, sexual assault, and/or mental health issues.
The organization even made its way onto the Instagram page Markle shares with husband Prince Harry, where she explained why she decided to include the independent bakery on the @sussexroyal page following their recent spree of mass unfollowings.
“What they’ve created at Luminary Bakery is exceptional — it’s a space for baking, healing and rebuilding,” Markle wrote.
“When I visited earlier this year I was struck by how the baking, itself, is a means of therapy for these women — which in many ways makes complete sense — feeling they had no control over their lives based on their previous (and often harrowing) circumstances, they found comfort in the measured nature of baking.”
Markle herself has, as we now know, been struggling under the weight of the media’s pressure. A recent documentary revealed that she has been having a hard time lately, propelled into a “fragile place” as a result of how the British tabloid press has been treating her.
The duchess expressed that the effects of this intense scrutiny were compounded by the fact that she is a first-time mom to a baby.
“Any woman, especially when they’re pregnant, you’re really vulnerable, and so that was made really challenging. And then when you have a newborn, you know. And especially as a woman, it’s a lot,” she said.
“So you add this on top of just trying to be a new mom or trying to be a newlywed.”
These unique struggles may have helped Markle to connect with the women at Luminary Bakery. “I find that when you strip all the layers away, as people, and especially as women, we can find deep connection with each other, and a shared understanding,” the duchess told The Daily Telegraph.
“Our lives may be different, our backgrounds, our experiences, all varied, but I find that in these moments of connection it becomes abundantly clear that our hopes, our fears, our insecurities, the things that make us tick ... well, those are very much the same. And there’s comfort in that.”