Yesterday I was late picking Luke up for a hike on Powell Butte. He got in the car and was really annoyed. As we drove we spoke with voices raised and teeth bared, both of us feeling the other one was out of line. Rawrr! Arg! Ugh! I regretted wearing wool tights under my wool pants. I regretted putting on five wool sweaters because I was now hot! Frustrated! And wondering if we would enjoy the next couple of hours.
We did. Because we continued to talk, with voices that began to level and intentions that shifted from proving innocence and guilt, to the greater goal, which is to understand and improve our relationship. We do this a lot. In a nutshell, I am callous and he is sensitive. I need to soften (more and more and more) and he needs to harden (my opinion). I need to consider him, without him asking me to. But he does need to ask when it is important.
We hiked. We laughed. We almost got busted for having Bello off leash but instead, after hanging out with the ranger for a while, I arranged to work with him this spring counting birds and collecting native seeds. We hiked on. It was beautiful and crisp and Bello rolled in the snow. We picked a great route and chatted effortlessly, joyously. And the morning faded away and the afternoon presented itself without a trace of leftover heat. Literally. Warm bath as the night temperatures dipped into the teens.