Olive Oil

I’m still reeling from the news yesterday that I’m having a boy. I was still reeling before that over the fact that I was having a baby, but the news seemed, well, distant, somehow. After seeing the ultrasound, and watching what is most definitely another human being, one that is anchored to me for life through a great span of family, distance and space, I am honored. I never, ever thought that I would have a child, much less a son, another small version of what could be me. Yet, here he is, sucking his thumb, kicking around and then, much like one of our bloodlines, aggressively lashing out when he realizes he is being observed. The fleeing from one side to the other of his Mom, trying to get away from the prods and pokes of the wonderful doctors and technicians.

They were wonderful. They laughed and talked and calmed me down. Our doctor, Dr. Jamie Jennell, immediately instilled in me a sense of ease and security. I haven’t truly, really prayed in years. Yet, while the nurses were performing the ultrasound, that modern marvel of technology, while they were measuring, checking heart rates, limb lengths, brain activity and everything else that is important, the room was spinning. I was praying. Please…Dear God, let it be ok. Please…

It was. Or rather, he is. Mr. Nolan Gray Matney, named after his Dad, his grandfathers on both sides, and in honor of generations of Matney’s, is fine. He is a bit more active than normal, but that’s good, you see. He likes his Mom and enjoys running with her on the mornings that she sneaks out of the house to relieve some stress. Axl, the dog, seems to know that something is up, as he smells Laura’s belly every day. My mom assures me that I was a good child, prone to reading and isolation, except that I had a crazy streak a mile wide, no doubt fueled by “Dukes of Hazzard” and “Smoky and the Bandit.” Except that we didn’t have a T.V. I crashed everything that I ever owned, excluding current vehicles – including my very first Green Machine. Remember those? Only the coolest bigwheel ever. I managed to jump it off the front porch of our house and broke the front wheel off.

So, here’s to being a New Dad. I write this as the smell of olive oil from whatever wonderful concoction that Laura is cooking wafts through the house. Some very dear friends of ours pulled into our drive a few months ago and were laughing that they could follow the smell of olive oil, garlic and sourdough to our front door. Well, I can only hope that little Nolan enjoys all this as much as we do. I’m going to assure him that the “Clown is evil, and children are known to vanish at Mickey Dee’s. Don’t go there.” While teaching him knife skills. When he’s two.

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