I got my first tattoo around 2007, after months of deliberation. It was a small piece, but I remember the drive was incredibly long and I was sweating bullets the entire way down. When I finally arrived at the tattoo parlor, my nerves vanished. I gave the artist my design, he copied it down and placed it on my shoulder blade, and went to town. Within 25 minutes (or less), it was complete.
Sometime around six months later, I felt the itch to get another. I can still remember driving up to a concert with a friend, and thinking "why don't I just get it now?" I didn't, mind you. I waited...about a month later, and then finally broke down. I went to the same parlor and it was just like before. In and out within a few minutes.
The last one I got was around my birthday in 2011; a birthday gift to myself, if you will. It was by far, the most painful out of the bunch, as it's down my abdomen - from my bra line to my panty line. It took a little over two hours and I cringed the entire time. But, ironically, it kind of reminded me that beauty is painful. To me, expressing myself through art was more than enough motivation to withstand a little pain.
All of my tattoos have meant something personal to me. Despite the insatiable urge to get another, I typically dwell on the design for months to make sure it means enough. My first was about beating depression. The second was about cutting. And the third, was a reminder that I am beautiful, despite what gets thrown my way. I've never once regretted any of my tattoos.
Now, after an over two year waiting period, I'm beginning to feel the tattoo itch stronger than ever. I have the means; I have the idea; I just have to get the specifics. Though my parents would freak, my mind keeps wandering back to the half-sleeve tattoo I've been contemplating for years. The idea behind the half-sleeve holds its roots in my urge to move across country to Washington state. I've been told many times by countless people that I am strong and independent, and that I've got more guts than most to uproot my life and settle elsewhere. While I may over-think (a lot), I still have a tendency of sticking to my guns and doing what I can. Because of this, I want my next tattoo to represent that nothing is out of reach. Whether it be love, happiness, or a shiny car; it's all within your reach as long as you try.
So that's my tattoo story. Three down, many more to go. What kind of tattoos do you all have? Or any that you'd like to get but haven't yet? Let me know in the comments!
Update: I did get a new tattoo. See below: