Tattooed Lady Redux

Tattoo number four has arrived. It’s kind-of how I felt when child number two arrived. I feel like this is the end. All of my tattoos are fairly small. This new one has the most ink, and it used the most colors. It took an hour and fifteen minutes to do, and I believe it was the most painful one I’ve gotten. Yes, I did ask myself a few times why I was doing it. I wanted it.

I decided that since my hubby and I have been together nearly 30 years that I wanted to do something to honor him and our relationship together. That relationship has been what keeps me going. I’ve often said that. Without him, my days would have no purpose and no meaning. I have been searching for a tattoo that would properly honor him. I considered several different designs and then rejected them. I seriously considered a key as in he has the key to my heart. I also considered a heart with his name on it.

popeyeI finally settled on an anchor tattoo. The research I did led me in that direction. Anchors are no longer just tattoos for sailors. I remember while growing up there being a man two doors down who had been in the Navy and he had a big blue anchor tattoo on his arm. Today more and more women are getting anchors because of the meaning behind them.

The anchor can be seen symbolically as something that holds you in place and provides strength no matter how rough things can get. The tattoo can also symbolize a person who provides the strength to keep you going. This person is your anchor in the storm.

That is the reason why I told the tattoo artist that I wanted an anchor with my husband’s name. By the time I got to my appointment Tuesday evening, he had already sketched up a design for me (see stencil below). I had others to show him, of course, and he had simpler ones ready himself. He ended up talking me into the one he designed for me. The original idea was that I would get a black and gray tattoo. The artist said he could do it in color for no extra cost. I figured why not. I ended up with reds, greens, blues, yellows and black. He was going for a retro/old-fashioned look, the way that tattoos used to be.

stencilTo make it look more three dimensional, he used a lot of shading. I think that’s what made it hurt more. He had an interesting technique that I don’t remember feeling another tattoo artist use. Don’t get me wrong. All tattoos hurt. This reminded me of a kid with a crayon scribbling in the colors. Only of course it was a needle and ink. I’m pretty good at being able to rise above and put myself some place else when unpleasant things are happening. I did a lot of that this time. The tattoo is just above my left ankle.

One hour after tattoo - just unwrapped for the first time
One hour after tattooing – just unwrapped for the first time
One day later
One day later
Four days later

Is this my last tattoo? Right now I think so, but that could change. While it’s true that I’m not getting any younger, I love that I finally feel free enough to be able to decorate my body how I want. I like being able to express my uniqueness.


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