Okay cupcake, if your answer was even the slightest bit hesitant, you should go get someone to explain to you how tattoos work. If you thought it may have been one of those temporary stickers when I posted in April: Honey. I am not a temporary type of person. Plus, stickers do not hurt (that much). Anyway.
I tried (‘tried’ being the operative word) to take a couple of pictures of how the tattoo looks now, because the only pictures I ever showed of them were only an hour after I got it — obviously my skin was a little red and swollen at that point. Please note I used a shitty camera and non-existant camera-skills, henceforth the pictures are sub-par to say the least. But whatevs.
After I got it on my 24th birthday in April, I was a good girl by not going to yoga for two weeks so it could heal. My tattoo artist had used both his fine skills and patience on me and that showed: It healed in less than two weeks.
I showed my parents, which was scary, but my mom liked it straight away (“It fits you”) and my dad basically said something along the lines of “well, at least it isn’t too crazy and it’s a nice font.” Of course he then added: “And I hope it’s the first and the last one.” That’s my dad.
Tattoo Nazi Number One, my darling boyfriend Manfred got on board quickly too, much to my surprise. My original plan had been to not force anything upon him and just let him get used to it naturally: That’s usually a good way to go with my guy. Funnily enough, the weekend after I got my tattoo, I was getting dressed in the bedroom when Manfred blurted out: “It’s actually quite nice.” I don’t know who was more surprised between the two of us. If you ask him now he’ll tell you that my tattoo suits me and that he think it looks great. And he like, means it. It’s more than I could have asked for, because my Manfred is usually one stubborn manfriend if there ever was one.
So, I don’t mean to gloat, but um, HA.
From that point on I make a few adjustments: For one thing, I bought and started using SPF50 Sunscreen for that area, as I’m terrified of having an ugly tattoo and the sun is superdamaging. Can’t say I never forgot, but I was very careful when it came to sunlight during the summer. I would normally slather on some SPF20 once or twice a day, but now I used sunscreen way more often and way stronger varieties. Which in itself is a good thing.
I had to get used to explain the quote on my body to people who are fascinated by tattoos (read: A LOT OF PEOPLE). On the beach or at a swimming pool it’s usually just a tilted head or a longer look, but in the yoga studio I explain it all the time. Which is fitting as the tattoo was based on a quote by Mary Jarvis:
“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’ “
Finally, I got used to having text on myself but to be honest that happened rather quickly. When I look in the mirror it’s not some foreign thing, it’s a part of me, one that still serves a beautiful reminder of how I want to live.
When I first got the tattoo, I said I’d never do it again. Which shocked the nation, as everyone who got ink wants to go out and get more. But no. I still stand by that decision. It has less to do with the pain now, athough to be honest just thinking about me really does strengthen my resolve. It’s more that I like just having one tattoo, at least for a really, really long time.
Never? Might be overstating it, though.