Daydream Believer

I have an unnatural radish obsession. I really think its some unhealthy, mental statement my inner child makes to my outer mother.

Yeah, I’m confused too, but let me explain.
Years and years and years ago, when Madonna had no children and Ricky Schroder was hanging on my rainbow-ed bedroom walls, I watched some odd tv show, or movie, or something, adapting a fairytale. I don’t think it was Rapunzel. I don’t think it was the Princess and the Pea. It was one of those C-List fairy tales that you didn’t see very often.

There was a young couple living in some cottage. The wife was played by some actress I would recognize, but always got confused with Liza Minnelli or that woman who does all the voice overs for Playhouse Disney and was the secretary on Moonlighting. Anyway, the wife was pregnant and had cravings. The dutiful husband would go out with his brown sack and try and cater to his ready-to-give-birth bride.

One night, late, late one night, the wife requested radishes. She HAD to have radishes. And one bushel (yes, bushel, because it was that kind of fairy tale) would not due. She needed to eat hundreds and hundreds of radishes until she gave birth.

Of courses, as in any good story, our main characters had like NO money and NO hope and NO real luck. UNTIL the husband stumbled upon some field that seemed to grow nothing but the radishes his wife craved.

From then on it gets really foggy for me. I know there was a baby born and some troll that ultimately owned that radish farm. I think the couple had to give up the baby to the troll, but I’m not entirely sure. Maybe they just hired a good lawyer.

Point being, it got stuck in my head that pregnant women should crave radishes. Nevermind I didn’t actually crave anything during either of my two pregnancies, I still made myself eat radishes. I was supposed to crave them. So all fat and hungry I would crunch on a few radishes, somehow thinking that nasty troll would show up and try to take my baby, despite knowing the nasty troll wasn’t coming. Ever.

I ate my radishes through both of my pregnancies. I crunched and gnawed and nibbled, like I was fulfilling some childhood fantasy. It was if I had promised myself at 10-years old “when you are all pregnant you WILL eat radishes” because you KNOW us girls fantasize about what it will be like to be pregnant. What our wedding will look like. What our husband will look like, etc. I was simply making good on a deal I made with myself way back when.
So today I sit on my parent’s Florida patio, eating radishes. I actually had a craving for them today. No, I’m not pregnant…but I’m still crunching them and rubbing my belly and looking at my kids. 32-years old and I’m sitting here reliving some childhood thought.

The truth is, I do stuff like this all the time. I don’t think my mind works very, um, normally (there are those who know me well reading this right now saying “yeah, we know, you’re CRAZY” and shaking their heads) at least if it does work normally-does anyone else ever talk about these nutty little thoughts and things our minds do?

I guess I just have an active imagination. Always daydreaming and then sneaking those daydreams into real life.

So today i was a pregnant, fairytale wife. Crunching radishes and waiting for a troll. Looking at my kids and wondering what little stories are embedding in their cute heads. Of all the things they see and hear and do daily, which little story will stick in their head until adulthood? What little quirk will remain with them forever, after something innocuous as a make believe story on the tv one night?

I wish I had the ability to pick those moments. To comb through their little minds and pluck out the things they should just forget and drive deeper the images and sounds and stories that will stick with them into adulthood.

I’d like to think as a parent I’m in control of those snippets of life. I am, afterall, the one who monitors what they watch and what they eat. Who the talk to, what they learn.

It’s never enough and at the same time too much. I can’t tell them what to remember and what to forget, I can’t censor what their mind’s eye sees. I can only stare in wonder at what comes out. This entire idea is also reminding me to do my best and NOT judge years from now when they are eating radishes on my patio and daydreaming.

i guess you are never too old for make-believe.


  1. I wish I could manage with daydreams stayed with me and which wouldn’t.

    Radishes always make me think of my mom’s garden.

  2. What a beautiful story you just told. I don’t think my brain works “normally” either because what you said about eating the radishes and all sounds exactly like something I would do/think. This is why I love you!

  3. This is a great post…because before age 5 or so, there are just snippets. And from 5-10, there are just a few more…sometimes my mom will still say “How on earth did you remember THAT??”

  4. The story is Rapunzel –
    He stole the radishes from the witch and never paid her back like he promised he would – so she stole the little girl who was born after all the radishes were eaten and named Rapunzel (after the nicked radishes).

    I only know this because my mother refused to let me watch or read the watered down verisions of fairytales and stories – instead handing me a thick copy of the original Grimm’s fairytales (not for children) and exposing me to the traumatizing horror within. I think she felt it was just more honest. I think – it must have been funny for her too – because I would ask a lot of questions to my teachers and then they would call my mother asking her why I was telling my friends about the real endings to the fairytales that they loved – yeah I was THAT kid.

    In the end of the story, when the princes start trying to rescue Rapunzel from the tower a lot of them get stuck in thorny bushes covering the tower and are left there to die and rot as a warning, (this part had a picture) birds eat them too. Then the witch has her eyes plucked out. As did the prince who eventually rescues Rapunzel – so he never gets to see her true beauty until he ends up killing the witch by shoving her out of the tower and his eyesight is restored.


  5. Glad to hear the flight went well. Though I’m sure the pretzl snacks were disappointing when you’re used to something hot and heavy (OK, at least hot) like radishes…

  6. maybe it was Shelly Duval??? Fairytale Theatre??

    OMG. I craved radishes with my last pregnancy(before I even knew I was pregnant. I almost never eat radishes…but I saw them at the store and HAD to have them.

  7. A beautiful peace my friend… and one I can relate to as daydreaming is an integral part of my life and of my questionable sanity and something that is encourage in our household. Hey, dreaming costs nothing!

    I am with Lindsey up above. Although in my household watered down versions were encouraged and, in my quest to know the truth and seek out the writer’s real vision, The Brother’s Grimm complete fairy tales as well as my countryman’s, Hans Christan Andersen’s complete fairytales were work I had to have and am the proud owner of…

    As for the post below… when my son was 1 1/2 we flew home to SF since Loverboy was being sworn in as a citizen… we had a stop in Paris and from there off we went to the US. They stopped us, since Loverboy had an Iranian passport then and we were travelling with a person from the axis of evil, and they took my children away from me (boy was 1 1/2 and the girl was about to turn 4) and made them splay out their arms and legs as they were patted down, both children screaming and crying because they wanted their mommy… they were even forced to take off their shoes, still not allowed to be with us as this was done, while their teeny tiny shoes were checked for shoe bombs. Now we are all returning home as American citizens but seeing that Loverboy and I were both born in Iran, and seeing that this is printed in the passport, well, we ain’t holding our breath! So I feel for ya my friend, it is a sad state of affairs indeed but that having been said, I am glad to hear the flight went smoothly and that you guys made it there safe! Muchos besos amiga mia!

  8. Ya know..if you are craving radishes…Prince Charming planted about 100 too many. If they survive ’till Blogher I’m so bringing you some. LOL.

    GREAT post, btw.

  9. Really? Radish’s? Ewww

    Great post though. I loved it.

  10. That fairy tale explains so much for me. Although I’ve always loved radishes, when I was pregnant I craved them constantly. I bought out the local grocery stores. I wish I would have known the story then, so that I could have some justifiable reason!

  11. I do love me some radishes…If I could, I’d pluck out all their memories of when I yell and lose my temper and keep the snuggly, loving times…I was just telling my husband this tonight…

  12. Wow. Our brains are wired the same. Now I’m in trouble! Beautiful post, Erin!

  13. Radishes are growing in my garden as we speak. I suddenly have the urge to go pick some. 😉

  14. Shelley Duvall’s Rapunzel. That’s the fairy tale you saw.

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