Four incarnations later (and as many layers of paint), this emerged. This comes of a whole series of things that have been going on around me.
Several people I know are expecting their first baby, and the guys are doing their best to be mentally prepared, but they know it's all unreal until after the baby comes home.
I also feel lately that our primary state is separation at a deep level, divided by an uncrossable gap or river from everyone else, and we spend our lives bridging those gaps imperfectly. That's what we're here for, I think - to build those bridges anyway - relationships. The hands, the birds, the similarity of the roofs or awnings - all bridges.
And finally, I have always felt that the gaps between people take on some special qualities between men and women. I don't want to debate where this comes from - society or biology or... the images just came to me and fit. At a party recently I was in the kitchen talking to the women (about kids, parenting, food, etc.) and I got a couple of funny looks from the guys 'round the pool table in the other room, until I moved in there. The cat, coffee pot, and window with curtains feel like female and home to me (I like it there) - and the dog and the open space on the other side feel more male (I like that, too). The woman being pregnant made the gap seem wider to me, as does the age of the figures. I feel the gap closes somewhat (or at least becomes a more familiar feature of a couple's landscape) as they get older and grow together. At least that's been my experience of it.
The dog became a boxer because of stories about a disabled vet (Afghanistan front) who is traveling round the country with a boxer during the summer after his first year of med school. I've known some lovely lady boxers and lady boxer owners, but they always seem like a quintessential "guy's" dog to me.