Three Seeds Under

searching for wholeness in a fractured world

Archive for the month “July, 2012”

a small reminder

I’ve learned over the years that inner space tends to mirror outer space. The messier my house is, the more scattered and depressed I feel. It would be easy enough to say that my depression causes the messy house, which could very well be true. But that doesn’t explain why organizing my a desktop helps me to organize my thoughts, or washing a sink full of dirty dishes helps me to feel like I’ve processed some of my own feelings. Sometimes I think serenity doesn’t begin in the mind, but in the home or the office.

As I mentioned in my last post, my husband and I are in the process of moving. The house is a disaster right now, and pretty much destined to remain one until all of our stuff has been packed away and brought to the new apartment. I’ve felt uprooted all this week, unable to concentrate on anything for long. There’s this little ball of anxiety in the pit of my stomach — so much to do between moving and looking for a new job!

But yesterday, my husband came down to my office with a little gift — a lily he’d picked from the garden. I cleared a little place for it amidst the piles of craft supplies I’ve been sorting through on my desk. It’s still sitting there next to my sun lamp, a fragrant reminder that every little taste of serenity counts. I don’t think it’s a coincidence that I’ve managed to re-do my resume and get two applications and cover letters sent out since he put it there. When I’m feeling disjointed, I just look at the flower. Not at the moving boxes. Not at the dishes I need to carry upstairs. Not at the piles of clutter that I still need to sort through.

Just the flower.


Feeling stressed? Messy house? Try it! Just clear one tiny space, for now, and give yourself something beautiful to look at. And let me know if it works!

What is this blog about, anyway?

Any of you who follow my husband’s blog might know that he’s taking a course this summer called Social Web for Social Change. I’m not in the course myself, but I feel like I’ve learned an awful lot from it. Drew always gets out of class brimming with insights, and I’ve enjoyed watching him develop his own blogging presence and begin incorporating multimedia elements into it. So it follows that, learning vicariously through him, I’ve started to think about my own blog more. This has led to an unscheduled hiatus as I decided where I want this blog to go. (Of course, it doesn’t help that we’re in the middle of a move right now — these are just the upstairs books!)

Books moving
photo by Andrew Jones

I originally began Three Seeds Under to develop an online presence for myself as a writer. I will use it to announce any publications and links to my online work. And of course, I will continue to review the books I love. However, I want this blog to be more than a blog about words, as much as I treasure them.

My tagline is “searching for wholeness in a fractured world.” I’m fairly upfront about the fact that I live with mental illness. I’ve struggled with depression since childhood. I also have ADHD, which was only diagnosed in my thirties, as is sadly the case for many women. Yet I don’t want Three Seeds Under to be a mental health blog. Rather, it truly is about the search for wholeness — for integrity.

When we live with integrity, we live as our whole selves, not our fractured selves. We live according to our deepest principles and beliefs. This is a challenge for all of us, no matter the chemical make-up of our brains. The world is not set up to make integrity easy. But then, nothing easy is ever worth doing.

I want to use this online space to celebrate the things that have helped me to find my center when I inevitably veer off course. Books are on that list, of course, as is my writing. But so too are many movies and songs, bits of philosophy, creativity, spirituality, and what I like to call the Ars Vitae (Latin for Art of Life) — all those little habits that help to draw out the joy in life. As John Crowley said in Little Big, “The things that make us happy make us wise.” I can’t claim wisdom, but I’m searching for it, as I’m searching for ways to live with more integrity.

If you are also on this journey, I invite you to share my path for awhile.

(100 books) 6 – Ecstasia by Francesca Lia Block

In the carnival city of Elysia, the land of youth, life is a sweet excess of costumes, parties, food, drink, and debauchery. Four friends live together there and play in a band called Ecstasia. Then their drummer, Rafe, falls in love with a tight-rope walker who has a secret linking her to Underground, where the elderly are banished. Their doomed romance drives the entire band to explore the shadows hidden beneath the city and in their own hearts.


I read Ecstasia for the first time in middle school, and completely fell under its spell. I carried it with me nearly everywhere I went. I wore through three copies in nearly as many years — as you can see, my current is still ragged and dog-eared, the binding coming free. I read it so many times that I still have certain passages almost memorized. But why did it have such an impact on me?

Read more…

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