A little bit about my tattoos, what/ where they are and why I got them.
Ironically, 3 of my first 4 tattoos have been covered up. My first 2 tattoos, well, we won’t even go there. They were 2 lines of words across my lower back, let’s just say I was 18 and in love and they have since disappeared along with the high school not-so-sweetheart. Props to anyone who still looks at their first tattoo and doesn’t mouth “What the fuck was I thinking?”
My third tattoo- and still one of my favorites- is high on my right rib cage. A quote from my favorite book that I’ve read several times cover to cover, especially in times when life can be taken for granted, “Tuesdays with Morrie” by Mitch Albom. It says “love always wins” which in the context of the book refers to the tension of opposites, an internal conflict of what the author wants for himself and what the world wants for him. In the end; love wins, always.
My biggest tattoo, and priciest, is my full lower back piece. I had to pick something BIG to cover both my 1st and 2nd tattoos, it stretches from one hip all the way across my lower back to the other side. I walked into the tattoo shop to make an appointment, and the phone rang. It was someone cancelling their 3 hour block of time with an artist. Talk about right place at the right time. I didn’t even know what I wanted, so I just looked through a book on the table and picked a few giant, detailed flowers. I started it that day with just the outline, but that wasn’t the worst part. I went back after it healed to start the color (my only colored piece) and that’s when the pain hit. The shading on my tailbone felt like an ancient hammer and chisel, no amount of “Give me a minute” or “Hold on a sec” was enough to recover from the pain. I ended up just folding up my sweatshirt in the crook of my elbow and crying for 2 hours while the needle drilled me. I had to go back again one more time to finish the color, since I was basically hysterical. I was so happy when it was finished, like legit THRILLED. It peeled for a long time, and hurt like a bitch. Unfortunately you can still see the lettering underneath the flowers and leaves, but only if you’re really looking for it. Can’t wear patterned bikini bottoms without looking super crazy, but that’s what I get for getting a huge multicolored tramp stamp at 19.
Next up is one that has also since been covered. I drew it on a napkin on the way to First Class Tattoos in Long Branch, and it was my cat’s name with a little heart. It was small, but you know once you have the tattoo itch- it never goes away. I thought it was cute and small, but I guess without knowing that I still had her it kind of looked like a memorial tattoo… like she died.
I think the next one was my ribs, after that fucked up relationship I wanted something somewhat symbolic but now I actually don’t really like it. I got a birdcage with shadows of birds flying out. Someone told me once it looks like a fire hydrant, and since then it’s definitely not my favorite. I went with my best friend jill and, again, cried the whole time. Who knew your stomach was so sensitive???? I thought tattooing fat would hurt less???? Ok, wrong. V v wrong. The cage hurt the most and by the time he was done, I didn’t even want as many birds as I ended up with. Jill kept telling me I was almost done, that lying cunt. Don’t love it, don’t hate it, but it’s too late to wash off the stencil.
My absolute FAVORITE tattoo is the song lyrics on my upper back. Christina Perri (the “Thousand Years”/”Jar of Hearts” girl) is my idol, her music got me through the toughest time of my life and when her second album came out I cried my eyes out listening to “Human” on repeat from November to April. Sometimes in March I got the lyrics tattooed: I can do it, I’ll get through it, I’m only human. It’s the most beautiful script, and my dream came true when I went to her concert- MET HER- and she signed it with a Sharpie. She said it was the first tattoo she’s seen with those lyrics, Jill took a good picture of it, and I proceeded to squeal and cry for the next 2 hours after the meet & greet, trying so carefully not to smudge her signature on my back. The next day I woke up and it was still there *pinch me*. I took the picture of her signature to get tattooed, and it came out insanely perfect. Now if she could come out with her third album, that would be greeeaaat.
And lastly and most recent- well, about a year and a half ago- is the peacock feather that covered up the “Lola” tattoo. This is something I’ve always wanted, but never knew where or if I wanted it in color. Considering the full color garden on my back, I went with black and grey and I love it. This one hurt pretty bad too, close to my spine, and it took a long time because of all the individual feathers. Peacocks are my favorite animal, they’re just so unbelievably beautiful and I can’t help but smile when I see a picture of one or visit a zoo.
If you saw me on the street wearing a t-shirt and shorts, you would have no idea how many tattoos I have, and that’s the way I like it. I have thought about getting something small on my forearm, but I’m pretty injury prone and regularly get burned from my wrist to my elbow with the oven door at work. Sometimes I wish I would have thought through my tattoos better and maybe gotten a few small ones instead of bigger pieces. Maybe a few more in my future. All tattoos don’t have to tell a story, but it’s definitely a conversation starter when you see someone with an interesting tattoo.