A Spiritual Practice
Gardening is a spiritual practice that helps the women we serve cultivate mindfulness – a lifelong tool they can use as they sustain a life of recovery from drugs and alcohol. Gardening helps us connect to the natural world and Mother Earth, which help our patients develop our relationship with our Higher Power. This can be emphasized in both group work as well as personal journaling exercises. As our women experience the way the soil feels in their hands, the sun on their face, and other pleasing stimuli, their senses are full. They are experiencing the world, rather than feeling numb from addiction. Self-esteem builds as the women we serve take care of our gardens, giving back to the program that is guiding them in transforming their lives. They feel pride and ownership when a seed they have planted blooms for the first time. Although we all know vegetables and herbs come from the Earth, we are so used to buying them at a grocery store. Our patients have the opportunity to dig a garden out, plant seeds, weed it every week, and take care of something tangible. One of our patients told us the first time they picked a string bean from the trellis and ate it, she “felt like a new Mom”. These are activities with low physical impact but high mental, emotional, and spiritual returns.
We’re pleased to share a testimonial from our alumna, Julie S., on the benefits of gardening in new recovery.[single_testimonial id=”8625″]
Oh, & there’s always that, it is good to get dirty…