Happy 2018! I get excited about the start of each new year. I guess it is the eternal optimist in me. A blank slate and a chance at a do-over. Who doesn’t need that?
The new year has brought a few changes. For one, I am typing this on my new Chromebook. Which is a great thing since the ‘I” and “8” keys stopped working on my last one. You never know how often you use the letter ‘I” until you can’t.
I bought myself a Vitamix blender which has revolutionized my life. I thought my Ninja was awesome. DOES NOT COMPARE. My Greenblender smoothies now have the texture of whipped heaven. Also, let me highly recommend buying a certified refurbished machine from Amazon. That’s the way to go.
Also for 2018 I decided to get a tattoo. I never really considered myself a tattoo person. I love them on other people. But let’s be real, it is hard for me to decide which cheeseburger I want at Red Robin. That is one extensive list of burgers. How could I possibly pick something to permanently display on my body?
I am indecisive by nature. I want to make THE perfect choice in matters so it becomes a daunting task, therefore I normally decide to just NOT decide. Forget about a tattoo.
I felt that if I did get a tattoo it would have to relate to my children. Those four people changed my life. They made me a mom, which gives you new purpose. That is profound. And warrants body art.
For years I had bounced ideas around in my head. Trying to think of what best symbolized motherhood. It never came to me. Until I saw my perfect tattoo on a girlfriend’s arm. She had nailed what it was to be the mother of four kids. Down the inside of her wrist were four vertical, black hearts. They weren’t shaded. Just simple and understated. It spoke to me.
One heart for each kid who will forever hold my heart. I told my friend that I loved her choice in tattoos and she gave me permission to be a copy cat. So that is exactly what I was going to do.
A few days later I was off to the tattoo parlor. Except nobody really says tattoo parlor anymore. I actually got an appointment with a body artist. That sounds way cooler. I took two girlfriends with me. I can neither confirm nor deny that they got tattoos themselves, since that is their story to tell. And loose lips sink ships.
I told the artist that I wanted four hearts to represent each of my children. I felt a little silly in that moment. This guy had probably done some epic, badass tattoos in his day. And here I was a 45-year-old woman getting my very first one and it was four tiny hearts. But if he thought I was pathetic, he didn’t let it show.
He designed the tattoo on an iPad app which was important. That way he could ensure that it was precise and straight because if the hearts were not perfectly aligned, then I would have to live in OCD Hell for the rest of my life. He drew it up, traced them onto paper then transferred the design onto my skin. After looking at it he wiped it off and repeated the process three more times. Clearly, he too was a perfectionist. I had found my people.
Eventually, the artist liked what he saw and fired up the tattoo machine. I was braced for a steady stream of unbearable pain but when the needle actually hit my skin, the pain wasn’t even that bad. I have often thought that I have a high pain tolerance. Sure one could argue that my tattoo is small and the hearts not even filled but I still say that I am simply a pain BOSS.
Suddenly, it occurred to me that I should also acknowledge the man who made this family with me. My Thick and Thin. My Good and Bad. I asked the artist if he could put a tiny “C” at the end of the row, which is my husband’s initial. You would have thought that I had asked him to sleeve both of my arms and tattoo my face. The entire room stopped to look at me. Even the other tattoo artist felt the obligation to tell me that was a harrowing idea. Didn’t I know that was a great way to sink a relationship? By having someone’s name put on your body?
I can only imagine the number of names that those tattoo artists have covered/altered/removed in their careers. I get it. I had been fairly warned. But I am not superstitious. And my mother’s name also starts with a C. Got it covered. ??
He added the tiny C and the tattoo was done. And it was perfect.
Now, to say that I have not had moments of panic when my eyes stumble upon it, knowing that it is PERMANENT and that my wrist is forever altered, would be a lie. But the episode passes and I love it again. Plus I am 45. Life is not that serious.