Last night I went out for dinner with 9 creative and vibrant women aged 40-50. There was much talk of art, young children, partners, teenagers, social media, Feminism, sex, hair colour, food, fitness etc; I hope you can picture it.
I arrived late, and ended up sitting at one head of the table, between two women I didn’t know, P & S. Slowly our conversations delved deeper, like cats burrowing under the quilt in winter. Do you reveal yourself easily, like P, red-stained teeth, bolstered by her 3rd glass of wine? Or with deliberate care like a tightrope walker, which S actually used to be in her 20s? I’m probably a mix of the two (always without the wine though), and as we chatted about kids and dads, relationships and dating, I said something about ‘…my current tomboy girlfriend in Melbourne’.
I noticed the split second of surprise and/or understanding flash across their faces, then we continued talking. P admitted she was currently dating 2 men at once. ‘Go girl!’ I said. S agreed; no disapproval or shaming here thanks. S told a sweet story about her husband, then juiced it up with tales of her various love affairs with women and men in Europe when younger.
I was struck by the ease with which we traversed so many different behaviours and presentations: travel/parenting/work/sex & romance/committed loving… there was both a fluidity and flow that delighted me. I know some love the stability of long-term marriages, the comfort of religious faith, the predictability of the same career path, or clear identity labels. Others need to explore and weave changes; surely we have evolved successfully by valuing both these states in our
cavemen cavewomen cavepersons’ tribes?
Online dating has brought me so much adventure and thereby self-knowledge. I don’t care if you’re 20 or 75: there’s someone out there who wants to meet you. As I wrote HERE in Episode 1 (including my fabulous tips), I’m a Queen of it, and proudly so.
It must therefore be time for my romance update hey? Well, we just passed the official ‘8 months’ marker since that inaugural online ‘Hi’ during my 3-month/$30 trial subscription.
Softly looming is the actual, physical, 3D-satisfying reality-based ‘6 months’ flag.
And it’s a rainbow flag, layered with glitter, sequins, type-written words and handmade comics. Yes, it’s Pride month in June, and I want to honour that old saying ‘I’m not a lesbian, but my girlfriend is’.
Some of us humans like labels, and some of us don’t. Sometimes we need them, and sometimes we don’t. I want to decide how I define myself, and when; what you think of me is none of my business. And now that I’m passing through the tumultuous year of turning 50 (my coming birthday is late July- don’t worry, I’ll remind you- there’ll be plenty of opportunities for gift giving), I’m relishing my absolute, hard-earned freedom to just Be Myself.
And 1600kms away, H loves that. x