I haven’t written a note in forever. It’s been a long night and not the happiest one, but I was talking to my good friend, Molly, about my troubles, and I feel quite a bit better. :) We talked about my being bogged down by the past and mentioned that my tattoos were an example of my moving forward. Her saying this got me thinking a lot about them and the reasons why I got them in the first place. I’ll be up for a while due to the nap that I took earlier and because I realize that I have more things to do, so I might as well write this.
I never imagined that I, of all people, would ever get tattoos! I had this image of only cool and badass people getting them, and I never saw myself as such lol. I also have a low tolerance for pain and didn’t think I could ever withstand getting one and enduring pain of that magnitude for a long time. (I thought the experience would be a lot worse than what it actually was). But my senior year of college was one of the most painful and most rough times in my life, as many people know. It still affects me to this day, and I have come to the realization that it’s something that will always stay with me and has changed me, for better and for worse in some cases. This was the first time I ever pondered getting a tattoo.
I saw some pics on Facebook and Tumblr and was instantly drawn by the quotes. I saw one tattoo that I thought I wanted to get but later decided against. Then I saw a picture of a woman showcasing a tattoo on her side that read “Words can’t say what love can do.” The positioning of it was stunning to me. I knew that I wanted it, but instead instantly changed the quote to “I’m stronger than I was yesterday.” I don’t know why I thought of that saying so quickly, but it was a testament to all I had endured in those couple of months alone. I felt at my weakest. I felt that I would never fully recover from the turmoil, depression, and the pain that it all caused. But deep down, I knew that I’d one day become a stronger person from it, no matter how long it took and no matter how down I’d get and would continue to get. It would be a reminder to myself that everything, not just this experience, that I had been through had made me a stronger person and would continue to grant me more strength than I ever could have mustered alone.
Two years later, I finally got that first tattoo. That same month, I got another one on my foot, reading “This too shall pass.” They were extremely painful experiences! They lay on two of the most painful areas that reside on the body. But as the tattoos read, the pain did eventually pass. As I know that one day, this pain will pass as well, even if it takes some more years. Having these scripts on my body as a daily reminder is extremely helpful. They remind me of how much I have overcome, of how much I am overcoming, and of how strong I truly am. I am so pleased that I get to have these reminders stay with me for the rest of my life, to reflect and look back on and stare at whenever I am feeling at my lowest and most unworthy. It is also fitting that my first two tattoos, and this will probably go for other ones as well, were quotes. I have always expressed myself better through words than through images. People get tattoos for many reasons, but these are the reasons for mine. I was able to receive a pain that I could control that eventually went away. Just like all bad things that occur. They may exist for a while, but they eventually do pass and life goes on. All of the tattoos that I get will show me that and will always provide a different piece of advice and reveal to myself and others a different slice of who I am. And for that, I will always cherish them.