It’s The Ink Life For Me

Tattoos. Still a bit taboo for some, but for most they are completely normal. So much so, that almost everyone I know has at least one tattoo.

I’ve been obsessed with tattoos since I was a little girl and saw all the builders at my house with them. Completely fascinated by them I was. Then, once my “cool, older cousin” came around with her cute little hip tattoo, I was dead set on the fact that when I was old enough I would start getting my own.

Fast forward to ten years later, there I was getting my very first tattoo, a cute little hip one, just like my cousin.

That is now another ten years ago, and I have a running total of eleven tattoos, which is already eleven too many for my mother.

For me, tattoos are little reminders of the past or lessons I want to remember. Some came from alcohol based decisions, which well, it is what it is, and others had a lot of thought put behind them. Either way, there is not one that I regret and there are many more to be added.

Funny thing is, as much as I love my tattoos, I hate telling people about them. It’s almost a touchy subject for me when they get asked about because so many of them have such personal meanings to me. Putting out those meanings to people who ask, gives them room for judgement, and that’s something I have never reacted well to.

For the purpose of this post though, I will be talking about the tattoos I have and all the meanings behind them. Who knows, maybe the more I put it out there, the less I’ll care about what people think.

  1. Sun and Moon- My very first tattoo. Is my symbol for true love. This thought really came from a quote I had read at the time which romanticized the sun and the moon. “Tell me the story about how the sun loved the moon so much, he died every night to let her breathe.” I could analyze that quote for days, but maybe I’ll leave that for another time.
  2. Diamond- This is placed on my inner bicep and is a representation of strength. At the time I had been going through a lot emotionally and diamonds are meant to be unbreakable, which my young self (17 at the time) loved the symbolism of.
  3. Sempre Ad Meliora- On my right hip, is a latin phrase translated to “Always Towards Better Things.” Also from said, emotionally challenging time, but is a phrase that I strive to make true. I know sometimes life can send you hurdles, but there are always better things to come and I’m constantly headed towards them.
  4. Compass- Located on my upper mid back. This was designed by my younger brother, and is in honor of my love for the maritime world, as well as my love of travel.
  5. “Wild” in a heart shape- Located on my bum. (Sorry, not sorry.) Was more of a drunken decision, but accurately represents my wild heart. Mother loved it, said it fit me well anyways.
  6. Unalome- On my sternum. Definitely my most painful tattoo. Was very into Buddhism during that time, even took multiple religion classes in college regarding their practices. Represents the souls path to enlightenment, which was always a thought that calmed me, thinking that one day my soul will be at peace.
  7. “Faith” written to look like a cross- Back of my arm. My faith has always been important to me, but especially during the time I got it done. Is now a constant reminder to check in on that faith, whatever it may be at the time.
  8. Song lyric, “With grace in her heart, and flowers in her hair.”- Inner arm. This lyric is from a Mumford and Sons song, called “After the Storm.” The song is one of my favorites, makes me cry whenever I hear it. Pulled me out of a very dark place and the lyrics tell a story of the way I want to end up.
  9. Phoenix bird- On my ribcage. The phoenix symbolically represents rising out of the ashes and having a renewal at life. I view myself that way, I escaped a really horrible time and situation in my life and completely rebuilt myself to who I am now.
  10. “Albatraoz”- Side of lower arm. Another drunken decision. The song “I’m an Albatraoz” by AronChupa, came on during a night out, which was already a jam of mine, but finding out that Albatraoz means “bad bitch” sealed the deal.
  11. Sunflower & Peony- Lower arm. This is my most recent and most detailed tattoo, an absolutely beautiful gray & white single needle tattoo. In honor of my best friend and I. My favorite flower is the sunflower and hers is the peony. Together, forever really.

So, there you have, all the ink that makes my skin the piece of artwork it is.

All little pieces of my past, that I carry along with me.

It really doesn’t get more special than that.


Mirjam xx

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