Oh you can ask all you want, I just don't know if I'll have an answer!
Oh, come on, no engagement or anything?
Ha, like I said, no answers!
You know your family's going to expect you to get engaged this winter, right?
What? No, no such expectation!
Oh come on, your sister got engaged at your cousin's wedding, now she's getting married - everyone's going to be looking at you! And you guys are awesome!
Ha, please, what about you? Your cousins are getting engaged one by one too!
So what about you guys? Isn't it time you guys got married or something?
Oh please, not you too!
Oh come on, your sister got engaged at my wedding, you think the family's going to let you off that easily?
Ha, let's talk about you guys having babies instead, shall we!
And so I brush them off. A joke, an evasion, a turn of topic. Always works. It's a tried and tested trick and the only way to respond to aunts who ask awkward questions, friends who want you to be happy and cousins who want to tease you.
But then I get a moment alone and I know that there's one person I need to answer if ever she asks that question. She'll see through my jokes. She'll latch on like a limpet. She'll turn the topic right back at me.
And I don't look in the mirror, because I'm not ready to answer yet.
Come to think of it...I'm not even ready to ask the question.