I guess I shocked a few people on Facebook yesterday when I talked about planning my next tattoo. I know I have friends who don’t like them, they have their reasons, have shared their reasons with me, and yet we still love and respect one another. There have been a few people in my life who just don’t say anything, they keep their opinions to themselves and that is alright too.
I’m a big girl, made my own decisions, and waited till I was old enough to do so without regret. Even though my first one is now not as clear as it was when I first had it done, and even though I could use a good cover up on parts of it, that’s okay, it taught me things. It taught me to do my research, find art I really like, and to find an artist who has a lot of experience, I also learned that you can give an artist a reference and then allow them permission to make it their own.
My husband would never have a tattoo, but he doesn’t begrudge me mine. I am an artistic person, enjoy the art of ink, and I don’t mind the pain. When I was growing up, people who had tattoos were scarred by war or prison, maybe they belonged to bike gangs, or were women who many considered of loose morals. Nowadays, it’s odd to see people without ink. It’s really a rarity. Young, old, men, women, a lot of people who I would consider conservative, straight-laced, they all have them. Some just have one little one that only they know about, others have their bodies covered. I was greatly surprised by guy once, before I had a tattoo. Every time I saw him he was in uniform, pressed to sharp points, perfectly polished boots, and then we were all at a casual gathering and he had tattoos on his legs, back, upper arms, I was amazed.
I know some people consider tattoos to be an affront to God. I am secure in His love for me, and if I have offended Him with my choices, and I know my choices aren’t always the best, I know that I will forgiven that. God is gracious, sometimes His children are not, that’s okay though, I’m not always gracious either.
My first tattoo is a butterfly, I love butterflies and I got it done in my favorite colors, as an afterthought and ill planned decision I also got the girls names above and below. Within a year that tattoo started blurring, the lines started blowing out and the names are not easily read. It’s on my shoulder and covered the majority of the time. Some day, when the black is mostly faded, I will have flowers put on to surround it. I was told the artist, and I use that word loosely, used a needle that was too large for doing script and probably had the machine turned up too high, he also went too deep into my skin.
My second tattoo I got back in February or March of this year. I wanted a realistic swallow, but decided after seeing the artist’s drawing to get an old school style. Swallows are attached to a precious memory of my parents and a road trip for burgers and ice cream. I’m so thankful for the memory and thankful for the image to help me remember it.
The next tattoo was done in May after my Daddy passed in April. I was supposed to have it done on his birthday but ended up going in a few days later. It is a poppy, a remembrance flower. I love poppies! Daddy loved the color red, he wore a lot of red flannels, mostly because if there was a chance to lure hummingbirds near him, red was the color to do it. I can remember him on camping trips with the humming birds swarming him in his red flannel. I am going to have a stem added with blades of grass for movement. It will also balance what I have planned for my right forearm, a bouquet of my mama’s favorite flowers. Texas Blue Bonnets, black-eyed Susans, and Indian Paintbrush. Mama and Daddy were both born in Texas and this will tell two stories.
I’m also going to get a tattoo with my oldest when she turns 18. Yep, we will go in and get something that means something to us. Today we were tossing around ideas. Sushi, lucky cats, something that ties us together. I would even consider something very small, like linked hearts.
So here is my view on ink and the people who wear it. You can’t judge a person by their tattoos. Sometimes they had their work done in another part of their lives and the image they chose doesn’t reflect who they are now, it tells a story though, and a person’s story can never be overlooked. Not everyone who wears a tattoo is a druggy, an ex-con, a lost soul, or a woman of loose morals or character. Don’t let a person’s tattoo be a stumbling block to their heart, you never know what you might miss if you do that.