Monday, February 9, 2015

Roast a Radish

Something a little closer to my normal: Food. Trauma and heartache or not, I have a family of six to feed and dietary restrictions to contend with, so I am always cooking. We were so blessed during the last 3 weeks to have many friends and family send us cards, letters, and emails with gift cards for various local allergy-friendly eateries to give us a practical break. Now we're mostly back to feeding ourselves, and there are a lot of veggies in my fridge needing to be used up. Tonight I pulled out one of my old favorites to use up the two pounds of radishes in the back of the crisper.
   Have you ever roasted a radish? I don't know about you, but until I stumbled across this recipe back when my husband was on a gut-cleansing 30-day anti-candida diet to try and repair the damage done by an unfortunately necessary 21 days on Clindamycin, I had never heard of cooking a radish. Maybe I'm sheltered, but my exposure to radishes up until then had been sliced on salads, whole or halved on veggie platters, or carved into roses and solely decorative on retro dishes. I was dubious, but I gave it a try because my husband was getting really tired of the same anti-candida veg dishes I was putting in front of him. I hesitantly prepared the dish, put them in the oven, and waited. I was amazed when they came out. I'm a fan of the spice and crunch of a radish, but when you roast them to a crispy, caramelized brown on the outside the result is a pretty radical change. The outside is a crispy crunch and the inside is an almost creamy bite similar to a potato hash. Not a bit of the harsh "radish" taste and crunch I've only ever known the root to have. Even my super picky kids love it! I dare you to give it a try, just once. I bet it'll surprise you, too.

Roasted Radishes

  • 2 lbs radishes, trimmed and quartered
  • 2 Tbsp oil(EVOO is my fave)
  • 1 Tbsp finely chopped fresh oregano OR
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp fresh ground black pepper
Preheat the oven to 425F. Toss all ingredients in a bowl until the radish quarters are evenly coated. Spread them out on a baking sheet. Bake for 30 minutes. Pull the sheet out and stir the radishes, trying to turn them all to their non-browned side. Bake for another 10-15 minutes until crispy and golden. Season with more salt and pepper to taste. If you're serving these to kids be forewarned that they retain their heat inside the pieces. I like to serve up portions on my kids' plates them use a fork to split each piece in half to let them cool for a couple minutes before putting them in front of the kiddos. 

They look like a roasted red bliss potato!

Friday, February 6, 2015

I Cried at Target

   Today I am determined to be productive, to at least do something beyond getting by. My goal is to get some thank-you notes and long overdue packages in the mail. I tried on Wednesday. I went out on a quick errand to Target, feeling fantastic. Then we walked past the baby department, and I was immediately punched in the gut with the fact that last time we were there we were making mental notes while pricing out car seats and Rock 'n' Plays. I lost it. Nobody tells you this will happen.
   Yesterday I tried. I got up early after a night of caring for sick kids, and got my tush out the door
for MOPS. I expected lots of hugs, which I received, as well as gifts and cards of love and support. Then they asked, as they do near the end of every meeting, if anyone had a birthday, a new baby, or a pregnancy to announce. There was one new pregnancy. She was sitting right behind me. And her due date was August 7th. My mind immediately cheered, "Yaaay! That's my due da-..." then crumpled. Wait, no. It's not. Not anymore. I held my breath and forced myself to hold it together lest I look like the great big jerk robbing some one else's joy, but inside I was weeping, and the rest of the day I was in a funk I just could not shake. Nobody tells you this will happen.
   There are so many taboos surrounding all this infant loss, pregnancy loss, miscarriage- whatever you want to call it. It sucks and nobody really openly talks about it. I hate even using the word miscarriage. It holds so much garbage. To some it may feel like an adequate term. For my early loss at 4 weeks in 2013, it feels adequate. For this? No. This sucks. This is not the M-word. That just seems like a sad word we throw around that everyone hears and gets out their eggshell-walking shoes. I lost my baby. A baby I had been bonding with for 13 weeks. A baby I imagined in my mind, I made plans for, I purchased blankets and clothes for, envisioning his squishy little face, his dark hair like all my other babies, his red newborn skin, his rubbery fresh-from-the-womb smell. I lost every single bit of that. It's gone. Not just a plastic stick with two lines and some nausea. I lost a child. Nobody tells you you'll feel this way. Nobody talks about it at all.
   So now I'm sifting through things- through physical trauma from surgery, through emotional trauma
from loss, through guilt for the flashes of day I feel great and forget how much I hurt inside, and through the gut-punching scenarios that fly my pain in my face out of nowhere just when I thought I was doing well. Maybe they're part of the healing process. But Nobody tells you that. And there's so much physical garbage happening post-surgery that people don't mention because it's such a delicate situation that you're suddenly five days post-op, doubled over in pain out of no where and spend hours glued to the toilet, panicking and wondering if you're bleeding to death on top of the emotional mountain you're already climbing. Oh no, Dr. Google says this is normal, but you had no idea because nobody tells you about that. Today I should be nice and round, taking my 15-week belly picture. Instead I'm left feeling like leftover gutted fish.
   So can we talk about this? All this? Can we open the dialogue and let people feel? Let people talk? Let us share so we don't feel so alone? I've received SO. MANY. EMAILS. since this process started, from friends and family who endured what I'm now dealing with, and they largely suffered in silence. Because of taboos. Because of fear. Because of societal pressure to move on because it was "a pregnancy," not necessarily a baby, and doesn't count as much. Because most people around you don't feel your pain so they think you should be over it by now. Because it's called a D&C, D&E, or "medical completion," not the birth of your baby, and calling it that makes people around you very, very uncomfortable. Because society says it's a first or second trimester "pregnancy loss" or miscarriage, and somehow it does not matter as much as a stillbirth. I'm telling you it does. I'm not diminishing anyone's pain or in any way quantifying experiences, I'm just saying it matters. It hurts. And it's okay to talk about it. We shouldn't have to suffer and try to heal in silence because of societal pressure and taboo. They are babies and we are the mothers with empty wombs and empty arms. But nobody talks about it.