Disclaimer: This is an original work of fiction. Please do not take, borrow, copy, or otherwise make like it is yours. Thank you.
Prompt: Author’s Choice
Written in honor of my 10th Writing Anniversary. This is partially semi-autobiographical and partially inspired by an episode of LA Ink. I hope y’all like it! Big thanks to Elisabeth for the beta. Any remaining mistakes are my own.
Written: January 12, 2014
Word Count: 382
There are a lot of people who don’t understand why people get tattoos.
I’m not one of them.
I know there are some people that get ink just for the hell of it. They’re drunk or lost a bet or did it on a dare or were feeling rebellious or whatever.
I’m not one of those either.
All of my tattoos have meaning to me. I put a lot of thought into each one and what they represent.
The Kanji on the inside of my right wrist reminds me of what I want to be when I grow up. (And while I may be closer to 40 than I’m comfortable admitting, I still don’t see myself as a grown up. I kinda live by the adage, “Growing older is mandatory, growing up is optional”.)
The tribal turtle on the outside of my right lower leg reminds me of where I come from.
The tribal wings between my shoulder blades represent hope. (No matter what’s happened to you or what you’ve done in your life, you can always work to make things better.)
The pentacle on my right shoulder is for protection.
The Celtic cross on my left shoulder is for faith in a higher power.
The Celtic heart and flames on the front of my left ankle is for love.
The wildflowers on the inside of my left upper arm with the quote ‘Earth laughs in flowers’ is to remind me that humans have no dominion over the Earth. We’re just borrowing it for a while.
The pain is worth it for the memories they hold.
On my last visit there was an older gentleman getting his first tattoo. It was a portrait of his late wife. He was having it put over his heart and every time he looked down she would be looking up at him. When the artist was done and the gentleman checked it out in the mirror, I got teary-eyed right along with him when I heard him say, “There you are. Hi, sweetheart.”
That’s why I get ink. For me they’re memories writ in skin. Even if I eventually forget just why I got them in the first place, I’ll still know they’re important.
They make me feel good and that’s really kinda the point, right?