24 And Tattooed: Another Milestone!

For as long as I can remember I have wanted a tattoo. It was never: “oh yeah, maybe I’d like to get one eventually”. It was always a loud and clear: “I am going to get tattooed come hell or low supply of ink”. It was never a question of ‘if’, it was a question of ‘when’.

Slight problem, though. My parents hate tattoos. My brother hates tattoos. With two exceptions, everyone in my family hates tattoos. Add to that the fact that my boyfriend hates tattoos, and you got yourself a tattoo enthusiast in the company of a whole bunch of tattoo nazi’s. However, it never changed the way I felt about getting a tattoo. That was definitely a signal I really wanted it. When even the opinions of these super important people in my life didn’t change my determination, I knew I was sure.

About two months ago, I spontaneously asked the guys from Moose Tatttoo to draw it. After about another month I got a call. I dropped by to see the design, and once I had seen it there was no stopping it. It was perfect, and I could feel it: this was my tattoo. When trying to make the appointment, the tattoo artist flipped open his planner on April the 18th. Not only was this my birthday (!!!), it was also the one and only Wednesday I wouldn’t have to work for the upcoming three months. Coincidence? I think not. I made the appointment.

Telling my parents was very hard for me; I was scared shitless. I value their opinion and support so much, it was weird I was going to do something they were never going to agree with. I was super relieved afterwards though: they were definitely not happy with it, but they expressed their support and their faith in my decision. Boyfriend wasn’t pleased either, but he handled the faith of a girlfriend with a tattoo pretty well. Must be my great cooking.

So, April the 18th was not only the day of my 24th birthday, the publication of my first e-book but also of finally getting my tattoo.

I did the Go Big Or Go Home thing straight away. I’m glad I did, because I am not getting another tattoo after this one. Not now, not ever. Ouch. 

My tattoo artist told me it had to do a lot with the location (straight on the bones of my ribcage), but it hurt. A lot. Especially when he was directly on my ribs or nearing my spine, I had a really hard time. I felt like a complete wuss, and I had tears in my eyes and trouble breathing. I’m sorry, that’s just the way it is. After a while I found some sort of zone, closing my eyes and just breathing in and out, squeezing Lin‘s hand into meat grind, poor little darling. Afterwards I couldn’t stop shaking.

I was very relieved it was over. And it may have hurt like hell, but it was worth it:

(These pictures sure ain’t going to win any Photography Awards, but let’s just go with it for now)

The moment this design popped into my head I knew this was it. It was perfect for me. I based it on what a very inspirational woman said about (yoga) champions: They have a sense of wonder. They’re curious to what they could achieve next, what more they can do, how far they could go if they tried. It’s not about wanting to be the best, about beating others or anything like that; it’s about an endless curiosity about what more you could do, what else you could learn, in what other ways you could grow and what you could develop and accomplish.

I want to live my entire life like that. And this resulted in the line: ‘And she wondered what she could do next’ 

Obviously it’s still healing (feels like a big chafe), but I’m very pleased with how it turned out. It’s a long line but it’s very elegant and slim. I still have to get used to seeing it in the mirror. A tattoo has always been a part of myself, it just hadn’t manifested yet. Now this part of myself is visible too. I chose to make it visible. And when I look in the mirror, it fits. It’s made me into more of me.

I don’t know…it feels like the start of a new something.

Written by SHH