Family of Me

by Daphne
Updates Mondays and Fridays

Scene 37: Engaging Mess

Libra (College me): Hang on, you didn’t date anyone *at all*?

Lark (20s me): I don’t think so. Things never really clicked for me romantically.

Mom (present me): Hello girls. Mind if I join you?

Libra: Lark says she didn’t date anyone *at all*.

Mom: That sounds about right. Her finding a partner was the thing that started the next chapter of our life, so technically her older sister was the next one of us to date.

Libra: So we’ve only dated *two women* in our *entire lives*? The woman I dated and the woman you eventually marry?

Mom: Yup, just the two. I’m… Not very experienced romantically.

Lark (deflated): We were such a romantic disaster.

Mom (sad): Yeah… Yeah. I mean, unless…

Libra: What?

Mom: I don’t know if you’d call it dating, but there was the woman we spent time with on FurryMUCK — that was around when I started college. We never met in person, but we talked on the phone a few times…

Libra: Oh yeah, her! She was several years older than us… And *much* more experienced, if you catch my meaning.

Mom (embarrassed): Right. Um. I’m not sure if that really counts as dating though?

Libra: I think it should. We definitely made a romantic connection, and it’s not like we just had a few flings or anything. We were seeing each other for the better part of a year, weren’t we?

Mom: Something like that, yeah. Okay, I admit it, that feels like a romantic connection. So we dated three women.

Libra: Four women.

Mom: What?

Libra: If we’re counting the online woman we should count the girl from school band.

Mom: Oh right. Does she count? We never actually asked her out, and we only hung out for something like a month.

Libra: We made out several times in that month, thank you very much! I think it should count.

Lark: Well hold on. If we’re counting her, then shouldn’t we count the vet?

Mom: Wait, who?

Lark: The vet! Libra met her, but we didn’t become good friends until after college. I helped her acclimate to a new town and drove an hour to visit her a bunch of times. We became really close to each other.

Mom: Oh. Yeah, I guess we did get close, and I sort of had feelings for her… But she had a boyfriend, whom she eventually married. The two of us never kissed either.

Lark: Maybe not, but we know she had feelings for us too. Remember the time we stayed overnight at her place and she slid into bed with us in the morning…

Mom (interrupting): Yes! Yes I remember. Okay fine, we’ll count her too.

Lark: I wonder if we’d end up together if she didn’t get engaged.

Mom: Yeah… I insisted on a less physical relationship when she got engaged, but we stayed friends for a while after she was married? That whole situation was pretty unusual, come to think of it. Okay, so we’ve had relationships with five women.

Lark: Six women.

Mom (surprised): Wh… You too!?

Lark: I’m just saying, if we’re going to count the vet, we should count the woman who worked with that non-profit. We had a romantic interest in her too.

Mom: Granted, but that didn’t go *anywhere*. I wanted it to, but I could never bring myself to make a move on her. We didn’t so much as kiss, and there was barely any chemistry there.

Lark: Maybe not, but I *did* ask her out at least once! It should count.

Mom: *Fine.* I’ll count it. Even though we didn’t share a kiss with her, I’ll count it.

Lark: Well what about the derby girl then?

Mom: What? We didn’t date anyone when we were in roller derby.

Lark: No, but we dated a girl who eventually joined a roller derby league. Heck, she was the one who got us into it.

Mom: Wait, her? We *barely* dated. We were “going out” for maybe two weeks.

Lark: But you *did* kiss her, which seems to be your criteria…

Mom: Okay fine! What are we up to now, seven?

(Bloom approaches from elsewhere.)

Bloom (High school me): Hey sisters! What are we talking about?

Libra: Women we had a romantic interest in.

Bloom: Oh, like that girl in my math class!

Lark: Hang on, there’s no way she counts. She wasn’t interested in us. She dated several other people while we were interested in her, in fact.

Bloom: Sure, but she still stayed friends with us. We were friends throughout high school.

Libra: We stayed friends throughout college, actually.

Bloom: And we shared some close moments! There was that time we sat under a willow tree and watched fireworks together, just the two of us.

Lark: You mean the night she explicitly told us that she wasn’t interested in us?

Bloom: Interested or not, she chose to stay close friends with us. I think that should count for something.

Libra: Should it? It never would have worked anyways. In college she told us she’d tried dating women and it wasn’t for her.

Bloom: Okay sure, but if we had… I mean… Oh.

Libra: Exactly. Wouldn’t have worked.

Lark: Still, if we’re counting the vet…

Mom (conflicted): Ugh, fine. I’ll count her. So that’s what, *eight* women we’ve had some sort of dating-maybe-but-maybe-not-but-still-close relationships with? A whole series of unusual, intimate, often long-lasting flings?

Lark: Hah, sounds like that lesbian trope. You know, the woman that doesn’t know she’s dating someone until her girlfriend tells her?

Mom (mortified): Oh no it does! Am I *that* lesbian? Have I *always* been a sapphic disaster!?

Lark: (shocked): Um…

Libra (sheepish): Eh. Heh.

Bloom (timid): Ah…

Mom (defeated): Oh for crying out loud. No wonder none of my relationships worked; I was trying to date as a man but could only relate to romance as a homoromantic woman. What an absolute mess.

Lark: Look on the bright side though — we know we’re a woman now, and a lesbian to boot! So not only can we engage with others in that way, we’ll be perceived in an authentic way too! That’s worth something, right?

Mom: I sure hope so.