Body art is not for everyone. Many people tsk-tsk the symbols and flashy colors on every conceivable area of the body, shaking their head in wonderment at those of us who adorn our body with varying levels of self expression. Perhaps it’s the perceived defacing of the clean slate of our skin that shocks them. Perhaps it’s the fear of committing to something as permanent as ink nestled underneath the top layer of the skin. Perhaps they feel it somehow diminishes a person’s worthiness. I don’t know, and I don’t think they do either. Whenever I ask the reason behind their reluctance to embrace the art of tattooing, the answer is usually “I just don’t like it.”
But every tattoo has a story. Wherever a person was in their life, they had chosen a symbol to reflect that particular moment. It was the missing piece of the puzzle that fit perfectly into their soul at that moment in time. Tangible documentation – something a person can point to, touch, and remember it by. And I don’t think I’ve ever met anyone who told me that they regretted their choice.
Jill, an incredible woman, very close to my heart, has allowed me to share the story of her tattoos with you:
A good friend of my oldest son, got his first tattoo when he turned 17 – a tradition amongst the males in his family. They’ve had the family crest inked onto their chest, reflecting the pride in their clan.
As for me, my first tattoo was about 11 years ago. I had always wanted to get a one because I recognized I was reaching a point in my life when I was feeling a little bit bolder, a little bit rebellious, but was yet unable to make a stand. An armband with the yin-yang symbol represented my emerging side, but the names of my sons and then-husband reminded me of the commitments I had made.
My second was about a year and a half ago, when I released my first novel, Again. I had integrated the triskele into my story, and since the entire writing process was such a huge part of my life, I wanted to honor my efforts by having the same symbol inked on my right shoulder.
My third was actually yesterday. The decision to get another tattoo came right out of the blue. I was doing the day job thing, wishing that I wasn’t, sneaking peeks at Twitter and blogs, writing and reading comments – basically getting all wrapped up in the writing experience – and I was happy. Really, really happy. Not that I’m not normally happy. I mean, I have two incredible boys and a steady paycheck. I live in a nice community with incredible friends and beautiful surroundings. So, yeah. I’m good. But immersing myself in the world of writers and other artsy-type people just puts me in my really happy place and resonates deep within. Like I was born to do this. By diving into this world of writers, by writing my novel, I am one of them.
I wanted to stamp that on my hand, across my forehead, to remind myself of who I am,and to put it out to the universe and anyone else who will listen (anyone, that is, not already within my own circle of supportive, awesome, incredible brothers and sisters of Twitterville, Facebookland, and Blogopia). Mostly, though, it was for me. It was something I needed to do. So I did it. Thank you Crystalyn!
I share with you now my journey of yesterday. Photos, courtesy of my writing partner, Kathleen Mulroy. Ink job courtesy of Crystalyn.
So stay tuned for my next story. I’m in the process of designing my next tattoo, a symbol that is coming right out from my next novel. I just need to figure out where I’m going to put it…
So, tell me…do you like body art? Do you have many friends who have at least one? Would you ever consider getting one yourself (if you don’t already have one). I’d love to know!