The Healing Garden

I had been up for a solid 72 hours.

The previous week, I had only slept at most for two hours at a time. During our fourth hospital stay, they sent my three month old home with a NG tube (a temporary feeding tube, the one that goes down the nose). Long story short, it was nerve racking, I was learning how to use a pump to feed him, and he hated it. I was missing work, frantically calling every person I knew, trying to get us in with Pediatric Surgery in hopes of getting a permanent G Tube placed so my child could survive.

It was our fifth hospital stay in three months. And I was scared, exhausted, and feeling helpless. My back ached from sleeping another night on a terrible excuse of a couch. My neck was sore from the maxi pad pillows that creak louder than the couch. But more than anything my heart ached for my baby.

He hadn’t eaten in over 38 hours.

His IV came out.

They tried several times to stick him. Because of that, we weren’t sure if he was getting pain meds from the G Tube surgery the morning before. He was uncomfortable and hungry. They kept telling me he was getting what he needed from the IV. And yes, he wasn’t dehydrated, but nothing had filled his little belly for over two days. They only way he would not cry was if my husband or I would hold him. That made sleep for us even more impossible. And to make matters worse, although they were only doing their job, every single time we would FINALLY get him to sleep, a nurse would come in to take his blood pressure or temperature. And the whole ordeal started again.

It was the longest night ever.

But really, it was a compilation of three long months of no sleep, mothering a very sick child, and fighting with every ounce of energy in me to get him what he needed to live. I was slowly watching my child starve to death right in front of my eyes.

The daytime nurse waltzed in, bright eyed and bushy tailed ready for the day. I was secretly jealous of her rested and put together appearance. Being that I was still in the clothes from the day before, and for the past week, I had seen nothing but yoga pants and messy buns.

The specified time that he had to wait to eat after surgery had come and gone, and my legs couldn’t bounce him anymore. Between shift changes, they were behind in giving him meds, and at that point, I was crying with him. I told her how we were past the time he needed to wait to eat after surgery, begged for her to get orders from the doctor to feed him, and to bring him pain meds as soon as possible.

Not knowing the night we had endured, or the previous months of fighting for this baby, she asked me if I needed to take a walk in the “Healing Garden” to clear my head. Apparently I had gone crazy at this point, if she thought I needed a little stroll.

Um, ma’am, no.

What I need, is sleep, for my baby to eat, and get his meds. The “Healing Garden” was the last thing I needed. I started to cry, like ugly cry, and I think she realized that wasn’t the best suggestion. She was perfect the rest of the day in getting us what we needed.

I constantly am walking through different seasons with the Lord. The one we just came through was really hard. It was all I could do to make sure we were just surviving each day. But in the end, God was once again faithful. My baby is being fed through his G Tube, we have lots of therapy in hopes that one day he won’t need the tube, and he is growing and gaining weight. I have never been more thankful to buy bigger clothes and diapers.

Although our circumstances change with different seasons, really this

whole journey

with the Lord is a walk of healing. In the words of a dear friend, “sanctification is beautiful, but so painful…”

I find myself once again,

praying for healing

. And this time, the “Healing Garden,” is exactly what I need.

I have been working through some pretty heavy heart stuff, and it’s so hard. It hurts. It makes me angry. And I just want to be over it. Sometimes I move too quickly from things, and Papa brings me back to them and says, “Stay here a while. Let’s really work this out. And as we do, I’ll make the garden of your heart bloom and grow until there leaves no trace of what held deep roots before.”

But I don’t like that. It takes too much time and too much energy that I feel I already don’t have. It’s uncomfortable to say the least. But when I unlock that garden gate, and allow Him to come in, I find Him there in the garden of my heart. Tenderly pulling out ugly roots, and planting new seeds. It’s another opportunity for me to know Him. And really, although He knows every part of me, it allows me the opportunity to let Him.

The other night, I sat in the corner of my closet, and asked Him why He hadn’t healed that part of my heart yet. I’ve been asking Him for some time now. After a good cry, and my husband praying over me, I closed my eyes for the night and trusted He saw me there, crying in my closet earlier. He gave me a dream that night, and in the events of the dream said to me, “I am not a God who loves you and leaves you. I am not finished with you. I will come to you.”

Rachel Ackerman Photography

He will come to you, dear sister. He isn’t finished with you. And although opening the gate to Him in your healing garden is so hard, and extremely painful, He will not love you and leave you. He will meet you there, in tenderness, on His knees, lovingly working through the old and replacing it with new.

I’m not sure what’s in your garden, but I know just like me, you have one.

And I’m praying that He will give you and me grace, even now, to invite Him in.

“Come, let us

return to the




he has torn us, that he may heal us;

he has struck us down, and

he will bind us up.”

Hosea 6:1 ESV