During the summer of my 4th year, I met a baby human.
“Junie, this is Jack.” The bearded man introduced us as he propped his child on his knee, granting her greater access to view the world around her. I watched cautiously. I balanced one paw on his ankle, not sure if this was the best of ideas.
I could feel the baby staring intently at me. Curious. And a bit aloof. Maybe she hadn’t had much interaction with canines. Surely, I wasn’t intimidating. I was little myself.
And I can’t say the introduction was easy for me either. She was the smallest human I had ever encountered, by far. With her little baby fingers and little baby toes. And those chubby chubby cheeks.
I looked away, hoping to escape Junie’s intent gaze. Was she going to cry? Was she about to flail her arms?
Did I take this chance and make my getaway? Or did I give this awkward meeting more than 30 seconds?
I was apparent, to me at least, neither of us was all that thrilled about the other.
I wondered how I could bridge this gap.
And did I even want to.
Suddenly;y, I felt a reassuring hand on gentle words. I could hear understanding in his tone. And I knew that he knew.
Life has a rhythm. Relationships have a tempo. And the ease of friendship takes time.