Grandma says “ You know what? It’s not my issue anymore, if you can’t find a job because of this it’s not my fault.”

Mom says “Well I can’t tell you what to do with your life.”

Grandpa says “Women like that are so ugly.”

Tattoos. That’s the subject. Currently I have eight. All beautifully placed and pretty well done. Here’s the rundown.

Serendipity on my arm. Meaning, the occurrence and development of events by chance in a happy or beneficial way, also a happy accident. I see much of my life as a happy accident so it was a fitting word, plus saying it is fun, go ahead try it.

There’s a Lotus outline on my ribs which is my first tattoo, I got it matching with my mother and that’s about it. The traditional symbolism of lotus flowers is purity and harmony but it was just really a design I liked.

Feather on my left rib cage. Feather has somehow ended up being one of my lifetime nicknames. My grandmother used to give me feathers to play with and it ended up transferring to my nickname. Much later in life a dear friend of mine went to Canada and brought home a pair of earring for me, they were feathers. She had a matching pair only hers were bigger causing me to laugh and say “big feather and little feather!” So there it is, my nickname is feather and I have it on me for life.

Under my feather I have the words “Send me on my way” this being a Rusted Roots song, it always makes me happy for some reason and carries on with my life theme of always being on the move. I like to think that life will always be sending me on my way.

On my left thigh is one of my biggest tattoos, a raven framed with a victorian outline. My raven is standing on a heart, the meaning for this one is Edgar Allan Poe’s The Raven and The Tell-Tale Heart. For the Raven tattoo, the entire driving force behind it is woeful insanity, the psychotic breaks, and depression. The negative aspects of absolutely losing your mind. This tattoo is meant to have a sister on the other leg, but I just haven’t gotten around to it. But I’m planning on getting the Mad Hatter and his tea party on the right leg to show the fun side of being entirely bonkers.

Next is my Warpaint tattoo, I got this one the day it was announced that Trump would be president.Which was for me, as it was with many a very emotional day. In a way I felt defeated, because how could such an awful human being get put into a position such as that, especially after we had such an accepting and clean-cut President beforehand. The design itself is a rose with a case of lipstick and the word Warpaint written across. The idea behind this is to say that my femininity is never a weakness but it is my strength, and everyday when I get ready I put on my warpaint and take on the day.Finally the last two have simple themes, Frida Kahlo. I have a minimalist tattoo of her unibrow, flowers, and hair on my back. It was a spontaneous tattoo done with my best friend. Then the next one is another one I got done with my mother. Her’s is a long quote from Frida, mine says “I am Simply I am” meaning to me, what I am is what I am, no tricks, no gimmicks, just me.

Tattoos are art, they are stories, they are memories that we carry for life. Yes, someday I will sag and they will look nothing like they do now. But for now they are here and I love telling people all about them. Of course people say negative things, but the best answer for them is “If you don’t like tattoos, don’t get them”.

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