Hubby and I are what I would consider well-educated, well-read, articulate people. For a long time, our social crowd consisted of like minded folks. You know, the sort who proclaim that they rarely watch television (they prefer films), and instead would rather strum a guitar and discuss politics. And while we enjoy their company and conversation, I never quite felt like I fit in - I mean, I don't come from a background of college educated folks. There is no guitar strumming at my family dinner table, although there is cussing and yelling and laughing and hugging. Plus, these folks are really Hubby's friends, as he's known them since childhood, and they just kind of let me tag along.
Our social circle started to change a couple of years ago. Hubby and I are avid mixed martial arts fans. Mixed martial arts is a sport that combines boxing, kickboxing, wrestling, jiu-jitsu, etc. It is the ultimate combat sport, and requires a toughness of mind and body that no other sport can touch. A while back, Hubby started to train at a local MMA gym here in our city. He never really harbored dreams of becoming a pro (although there's always a chance that might happen), but really just wanted the comraderie, the physical/mental challenge, and the outlet for his IF related anger.
At the gym, he met a guy we'll call Terrible. On the surface, you might think that Hubby and Terrible are too different to get along: white collar vs. blue collar, west side vs. east side, college educated vs. not. But in the last couple of years they have built a friendship on the foundation of beating the crap out of each other and a mutual admiration of tattoos. Bromance, indeed. And I have to say, I truly do get along with Terrible more than I do any of Hubby's other friends. We often have really interesting conversations about a wide range of shit.
And slowly but surely, we have shifted our social alliances. These days, most of our social outings are to Terrible's house. We hang out, maybe work out, have a couple of drinks, shoot the shit. We go to their kids' birthday parties and see them on holidays. Terrible and his wife were one of the first couples I tested our "coming out of the infertility closet" on. We met them after all of this shit started going down in our life, and so they can't compare us to the people we were before.
Friday night, this new friendship had a test. We were at their house having a couple of cocktails with some of their other friends, and as sometimes happens, the guys split off into one group and the chicks into another. And, as often happens when fertile ladies get together, the conversation turned to children/pregnancy, and eventually to my infertility. I don't know if it was the Southern Comfort, or my frustration at hearing yet somebody else who hasn't experienced IF tell me what I should be doing (as we all know, relaxing DOESN'T make babies!), but I lost my shit and had to run crying from the room.
There I stood, on Terrible's deck in the cold, crying my eyes out. And to my surprise, Terrible himself came outside to cheer me up and offer a hug before anyone else. It really surprised me, since I know how a lot of men don't like to confront their own emotional issues head on, much less those of their buddies' wives, but there he was, my tattooed, tough-guy friend, offering me a shoulder to cry on and a kind word. And now, I won't hesitate to call him my friend as well as Hubby's.
Human beings never cease to amaze me.