As I mentioned in my last post, I am officially a tattooed human being as of April 21 2016.
I’ve always loved the way tattoos look and the stories they tell.
I am forever writing things on my hands and arms to remind myself to keep going, stop hurting myself and to be positive, so it was basically the next logical step for me to get tattoos, but still, I wasn’t convinced I’d ever have a tattoo of my own (let alone four mini ones) because I’m always so worried about what other people will think about me when I do something different but when I started saving for these ones I didn’t really care what anybody thought except my parents.
When I talked to my mom and dad, I told them WHY I wanted to get tattooed, they were surprisingly a lot better about it than I thought they’d be. My dad said as long as I thought it was going to help me, he didn’t see a problem with it.
In my original plan, I was only going to get my left wrist done, and it was just going to say, “Honestly” (because of VOTA’s song of the same name) with a semicolon* underneath it, and my “life date”. Which is just my way of saying that was the day I decided not to end my life when I was seriously considering it on April 21 2012 because I saw VOTA live in concert and they played some songs that mean a lot to me, and I felt like God wanted me to stay, so I did. (Check out my other blog post if you want more details because that was the extremely condensed version!)
It was going to be small and it was going to be simple, but at some point along the way, the plan changed as I thought about the semicolon project and how it didn’t really “fit me” because I can’t honestly say I would’ve CHOSEN to continue my story if it hadn’t been for divine intervention, for lack of better terms, so I chose to put my semicolon inside a cross, and the final decision in my planning process, I decided to get “You have something to live for” which is a line from VOTA’s song “Alright”, which was another one of the songs they played that night in Kitchener. It was the song that drove the point home for me.
So, I did a lot of research on where I wanted to go, and who I wanted to do my tattoo (I went with Hart and Huntington in Niagara Falls, by the way. Tori Kopp was amazing. I asked a hundred questions and she was still friendly to me! She talked me through everything, and explained my options and what would look best, which is why I ended up getting the second half of my idea on my right wrist because she couldn’t size the letters down any more without making them distorted, and I didn’t really feel like starting a half sleeve :3) and I booked the appointment for one o’clock on April 21st.
When I saw VOTA again in March of this year, I asked Bryan Olesen (the lead singer of the band) to write, “You have something to live for”, and I got John Wooten (the drummer) to write my “Honestly”, and I’m so excited to have my tattoos now. They feel right, like they were meant to be on my skin this whole time, and they’re a great reminder that I do indeed have something to live for.
* For anyone unfamiliar with the semicolon project, you can read more about it here: http://www.projectsemicolon.org but in short, a semicolon is used when an author could end their sentence but chooses not to, and the project is for those who have struggled with depression, anxiety or anything else that has brought them to that edge where they considered suicide. Some people get them in memory of friends and family they lost or almost lost to suicide, as well.