Apr 12, 2012
I got a tattoo. I've wanted one a long time. So, on a random Tuesday night, I went and just got 'er done. Though there is an inherent feeling of badassness about getting a tattoo (on your neck no less), I really feel as square as possible about how I approached the whole thing. I've had a design in mind for almost a year, and spent about the same time whittling down my short list of locations on the body. It was very calculated. I guess that's not square, but rather adultish. (what the hell?) Anyway, here's how it all went down, and my thoughts about the whole process...
I came in with a very clear idea of the simple design I wanted to get. The man just sketched up quickly (like a champ, I might add) and put it on me as a temporary tattoo to check out. I'm already starting to freak a little at this point. Note the look of pure terror in my eyes:
(Quick piece of mini commentary: The man lying in the bed next to me, who I was WAY too close to for my comfort, had his pants unbuttoned all the away and was getting some snakey/dragony thing around his pelvis area. I could see way too much of his body out of my side eye. Not in a good way. SUPREMELY distracting. I tried to get my cameraman to capture a little bit of that awkwardness, but he refused on the grounds that its a man with his pants unbuttoned. Fair enough.)
To actually get the thing, I sad down in this little seat and put my head down. It made me nervous to no end to not know what was going on around me. There were probably like 5 other tattoo artists in the shop buzzing away with their little needle gun thingys and I couldn't tell if my guy was coming at me. He was lovely and gave me plenty of warning. Here we go:
(Tip: closing your eyes doesn't do anything.)
(Also, the sweet tattoo artist, Donnie, showed me a few of his tattoos. The ones you can see here look normal enough. But he hiked his shorts up (yes, I saw his butt cheek) and showed me a GIANT TIGER/LEOPARD thing across his thighs. I'm going to go ahead and call that and pelvis man the weirdest parts of it all. I was totally unprepared for how much man I saw in that tiny shop)
The whole thing probably took 5 minutes or less. That shocked me. When he was actually doing it, it felt kind of like an extended cat scratch (BTW, me using this analogy when I tell this story does nothing but heighten my distaste for cats). I was prepared for excrutiating pain. Don't get me wrong, it didn't feel good, but really not that bad. I guess the guy thought I was going to be a wiggler, because most of his body weight is on top of my shoulders keeping me still. It was a disarmingly intimate amount of body contact with a stranger:
Finally it was done!
What's that design, you ask? It's obviously Texas. But, the hearts are situated over particular cities that hold sentimental value for me. Remember the Christmas Tour De Texas? It's essentially the road map of that sojourn. It highlights where I grew up in Houston and the two small towns where my parents are from and our extended family lives. As sad as it may be to think about, I've lost three of my four grandparents and I wanted this little piece of imagery to remind me of who made me who I am today. Also, that annual road trip is one of my favorite traditions (though I groan at the hours in the car) that just our family shares. I'm really happy with it and proud.
Overall, it's so weird. I woke up the next morning and my first thought was really "I have a tattoo. Weird". A couple of days later, it stings a little and shampooing my hair is pretty much torture. But, I'm thrilled with it. And proud of myself for just biting the bullet and doing something I felt like doing. I am a grownass woman after all. :)
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