With Tattoo?

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For a long time I’ve wanted to get a tattoo.
Years ago I decided that a simple “lovewins” on my left wrist would do the trick.
Small enough to cover with a think bracelet, white ink, all one word, in my own script.
Eventually, I toyed with the thought of adding “eph4:29” to my right wrist, too.  
A matching pair.

Then I decided that if I got “lovewins” on my left wrist, I could get “eph4:29” on the inside of my bottom lip.  After all, the verse was my constant reminder for several years in a row to not speak harshness into the world.  “Only what is helpful in building each other up that it may benefit all that listen.”  This would be symbolic, right? 

I’ve never really let go of the ideas of these tattoos, but lately the idea of tiny anchor on my wrist has been calling to me.  No bigger than dime, a simple little anchor.  A reminder of the quote I stumbled upon this summer when I felt my entire perspective shift.  The quote I keep referring to as I move forward each day.  The quote I plan to reference at least a dozen more times before 2012 😉

All this thinking about tattoos, and talking about tattoos, and planning for tattoos– you think by now I would have gotten a tattoo, right? Wrong.  Why?  Because I am a coward.  [last night I even said to Nicholas while looking at his sketch book, “so, when I finally get the balls enough to get a tattoo, you’re going to do the sketch for me, right?]

Are you brave and with tattoo? [a little bit different than being with child]

My good friend Megan is doing a presentation for the symposium at her college on body art.  She wants to show photos of people with body art.  If you have a tattoo and are willing, it would be awesome if you could send a photo [or photos!] you are willing to let her use in her presentation.  Any story, descriptions, or explanations about your art would also be welcome!  Please send your photos to Megan at morchols@cord.edu.

[also – please pass this on to any friends YOU know with body art who you think would like to share!] 
[double also – I’d love to hear your tattoo stories, too! Feel free to copy me on your emails to Megan! thenheathersaid@gmail.com ]


[triple also – don’t forget to enter the Elle’s Studio giveaway!  I’ll be announcing the winner tomorrow, so get your entry in TODAY: Wednesday, September 7th!!]

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59 thoughts on “With Tattoo?

  1. Leah

    I have three tattoos, all on my arms. This is my first one, and the one that’s the most meaningful. I also have the word “FOUND” tattooed higher up on the inside of that arm, and on the left arm, “For whatever we lose, it’s always ourselves we find in the sea” (which is from an e.e. cummings poem). I have plans for two more (apple blossoms/branches on my left elbow and a jellyfish on my right calf). 🙂

    1. Heather Post author

      1. i love your blog. i just geeked out over my first visit there.
      2. i hope you send some photos and stories to Megan (though i did send her a link to the Charlie post) because your tattooos sound AWESOME!

  2. Michelle

    I always wanted one growing up, in my teens and early 20s, but was always too chicken to get one. Then I went away and got a couple of airbrush ones on the spots where I was thinking of getting one and ya know… I was sick of them after one day. That’s a great way to test it out. This summer I (jokingly) got my husband’s name airbrushed on the inside of my wrist and again, couldn’t wait to take it off when I got home after I showed him!
    Not for me, but I love tattoos with stories. And some of them are really beautiful. I like the anchor idea!
    Michelle recently posted..Back at it

  3. Jen

    you should totally get an anchor tattoo! I love it! I’ve been wanting a tattoo for a while in the same spot (wrist) but I am a CHICKEN and not sure what I would get…as in..can’t make up my mind.
    Jen recently posted..National Yoga Month

      1. Heather Post author

        everyone ALWAYS asks if I want an owl [probably because of the 243092309482 owls around my apartment/in my life?]

  4. Nic Dempsey

    I have two. Got the 1st for my 20th birthday, second on my 30th. It’s strange though, when I got the first one, it was an unusual thing to do and by the time I got my second everyone had them. As to what they are, first is a circle in green, second is a shape in blue, they’re just pretty patterns, no great meaning. I like them and it’s always funny to see people’s reaction to my having them, apparently I don’t look like the type!
    Nic Dempsey recently posted..Ordinary Beautiful Things – Poison Bottles

  5. April

    Ooh girl! In your lip? You might want to get another one first before you get your heart set on that placement. I have found my hip is the least painful place for tats. I am at work now but once I get home to my pics I’ll send some stories and photos for your friend’s project (which sounds like it’ll be awesome)!
    April recently posted..Pizza Pictorial

    1. Heather Post author

      really!? i’ve heard that the lip one doesn’t hurt as much as just is awkward to get with the sounds so close to your ears.

      1. Heather Post author

        you should TOTALLY send your photos/stories to Megan (and me!)

        especially now that i know you have an anchor!!! 🙂

  6. KyraTX

    I have one tattoo, of a phoenix, that I designed. I’m currently working on the design for my second one, a turtle, maybe with a 13.1 in it representing the two half marathons I finished.

  7. Emily

    I have one, obvs. Left wrist, says “magic.” As in “never settle for less than magic.” I had a lot of rules i set up for myself as a teenager who wanted a tattoo. 1) had to be single–like really single, on my own, no prospects, no broken heart… like really really single. because i know myself well enough to know that if i were to get a tattoo while i was thinking about someone else than that tattoo would always represent them irregardless of what happened to us and i didnt want to brand MY body with the memory of SOMEONE ELSE. 2) had to be over 18. 3) had to be able to afford it on my own, not about to buy it on credit, hello! 4) i had to have wanted it for a very long time. So all of these things eventually worked themselves out and i got it about a year and a half ago. Never regretted it even for a moment–i kind of love the idea that i did something crazy and irreversable and one day i’ll look back on it and think “what was i thinking?” Also, getting on my wrist (though really trendy now) was a really good idea because it’ll always be easily concealable if i need it to be.

    1. Heather Post author

      a) i LOOOOOOOOOVE your tattoo.
      b) email it to megan.
      c) yes, that seemed like an order.
      d) but really, no, do it.
      e) 😉 xo

  8. Stina

    I have a tattoo of three stars on my left hip. There was no terribly deep meaning to it – except for my obsession with stars – when I gotthe tattoo, but over the years it’s taken on a great deal of meaning to me. My best friend since high school has a very similar one on her right hip – we got them together – our first tattoos. Even though her and I have grown apart quite a bit in the last two years, I feel like that tattoo represents the great connection between us. No matter how close we are or are not as friends, she will always be a part of me because I am who I am in large part due to my friendship with her. There’s a certain beauty to that which nothing else can touch.

    I really want to get a second tattoo, but I’m not at a point where I can justify spending money on a tattoo. Once I do have the extra money I plan to get the quote “It is our choices that show what we truly are, far more than our abilities.” on my right foot. It’s a quote from Harry Potter, but it’s one that holds a great deal of meaning for me. It was also a really important quote in carrying me through my first half marathon which is why I plan to get it on my foot.
    Stina recently posted..305. Weight Watchers Wednesday: Week #11

    1. Heather Post author

      hi. it’s me again. commenting on this comment you left me last fall.

      I am currently working my way through the HP books now. [I just finished #3] and i just have to tell you that when I came across that quotation, i thought – OH! I have heard this before!

      and then i wrote it down on a post it note, and have been thinking about it in terms of running/weight loss all along.

      Then, today, because i am [slightly] vain, I was rereading old posts. [I like to look through the posts that show up as viewed in my stats section to look for typos/etc, actually] This post had 4 views today, which I thought was odd. So I was reading through the comments for fun, found your comment and thought – AHA! I have to tell her!

      so that’s what I am doing.


      1. Stina

        Funny how things like that happen!

        I have actually since revised my tattoo plans. After I finish the WI Marathon in May I plan to get “26.2 choices” as my reward/ reminder.
        Stina recently posted..A Fresh Start

  9. Jessica @ Healthydairyland

    I have two tattoos – a star on the back of my neck and a Celtic triskel on my inner right ankle. Both were impulses and I wish I had cool stories, but really they are just the result of being bored and 20 years old. I guess they are a good reminder that your past is always with you! I do want to get a third tattoo. It’s a matter of placement right now…decisions decisions!
    Jessica @ Healthydairyland recently posted..Why I’m Running With Team Challenge

  10. Erin

    Hi Heather,

    It’s great that you are thinking about getting a tattoo and it’s good to really give yourself time to decide. This is one major thing people should never rush into (like getting married or having children lol).

    Also, I am pretty against choosing a place based on the amount, or least amount of pain you may go through. Look at it this way, getting a tattoo (unless it’s huge) is only going to take a couple hours, or even less, so why choose something that is permanent and will be there for the rest of your life based on pain that may only last a couple hours. Just doesn’t make sense.

    Personally, I have 2 tattoos and absolutely LOVE them and I definitely want more. My first is a gorgeous black phoenix on my lower back that is about 3 inches tall, then I just got a peach lotus on my wrist in February. I’ve wanted one on my wrist for at least 3 years and while everyone was worried that it would stop me from getting a job honestly no one even notices and most of the time if they do, they don’t care.

    That said, my advice to you is: 1) print out what you want and hang it up near your laptop or bed so that you can see it all the time and really determine if you want it to become part of your body, 2) once you decide to go for it find a really good tattoo parlor that is clean and does a really nice job and finally 3) embrace it! I believe my tattoos are a special part of me that have actually helped me change in one way or another and I don’t regret them at all.

    Good luck and keep us updated!!

    Here is a quote I just heard recently (forgot the author): Sometimes doing something irreversible is good for the soul.

    Sorry this is so long btw!!!

    1. Heather Post author

      LOVE that quote! thanks for all your advice.

      also – NEVER apologize for leaving long comments – It’s one of my favorite activities 😉

  11. Colleen

    My dad got a silly “hippie” tattoo when he was in his early 20s – it’s a cloud with a thunder blot going through it, and it’s located on the outside heel of his foot. Two years ago, my brother got the same tattoo in the same place. It’s small and kind of odd, but the meaning behind it is great. I’m sending my brother the link now!
    Colleen recently posted..Big News [Am I Crazy?!]

  12. Heather @ Run Eat Play

    I don’t have a tattoo, I’m too scared it would hurt! And I would always be afraid that I wouldn’t like it one day! Do I want the same thing on my body forvever? I’m not sure. I don’t think that I would ever get one, but I admire others!

  13. Mellissa

    I just got an orange tulip on my left foot, it is all about meaning. I debated about it for a long time and knew this is what I Needed to do. I look down and see it and think of how far I have come and how much growing I’ve done. I will send an email and pic 😉
    Mellissa recently posted..Clean Freak

  14. allison @ thesundayflog

    woo! finally i can comment 🙂 i have one tattoo – 3 stars on my hip to represent me and my 2 sisters. we are very very close and wanted to do something small for each other. the best part is that my mom is now planning on getting our same tattoo near her shoulder blade and then a mini star for each grandchild. we all have at least 1 tattoo in my family but everything means something (my dad has the symbol for “fortunate” as well as anchor to symbolize his love of the ocean). i want another one – something to do with africa (where i studied abroad and where i will always credit for shaping who i am today), an elephant (for luck and because i love them), and the word ‘ubuntu’ which means brotherhood and togetherness in zulu. i will never regret them because they are a huge part of my life, so i say go for what symbolizes you, or is important to you. just like the quote, “never regret something, for at one point it was what you wanted.” xoxox!

    1. Heather Post author

      OBSESSED With that quote: never regret something, for at one point it was what you wanted.

      i have FULLY embraced that this summer, and I plan on declaring it forever and ever amen! 🙂

  15. Rebecca

    I’ve been thinking for a couple of years about getting at least one tattoo (blogged about it a little while back), but
    1) I hate needles/pain
    2) they’re permanent. What if I don’t like it in a couple of years? I should try that airbrush idea…
    3) I wouldn’t know where to put it.
    If nothing else, I can put the design on a shirt or a bookmark or something… Hah. 🙂

    My sister is determined to get a tattoo when she turns 18 (in January), but my parents aren’t super-thrilled about it. I mean, they’re permanent. Plus, she’s kinda broke. So. Hah. Hers would be a cross and a heart, intertwined somehow. She showed me a sketch, but I can’t remember all the details.
    Rebecca recently posted..I wrote another guest post…

  16. Kelly @foodiefresh

    I really like small tattoos that have a lot of meaning behind them for the person who is wearing it. I myself do not have a tattoo, not because I’m scared, but because I don’t know what I would get that I could love for a lifetime. I toyed with getting a 26.2 on my foot…but…I don’t know. I don’t know if I will ever actually get one.
    Kelly @foodiefresh recently posted..A Healthier Pulled Pork

  17. Jessa

    First of all I just wanted to say that I’ve been going through a bit of a rough patch recently, and a friend of mine shared the link to your site (more specifically, the link to the quote image in this post), and it nearly brought me to tears. I told her that I wanted to frame it as a reminder for myself. I LOVE the idea of the anchor for a tattoo. I understand your wariness of wanting to get one (I have two but I was terrified to get my first one), but I think with something as meaningful as what you want, you’ll absolutely love it and you won’t regret it.

    My most recent tattoo was in memory of my grandfather and aunt who I lost within a year of each other due to cancer. It’s an image I found online – a dandelion that is blowing in the wind where the seeds turn into blackbirds: http://www.flickr.com/photos/everykiss/5927907871/in/photostream I am in love with it. I can’t wait for my next one!
    Jessa recently posted..Day 2

    1. Heather Post author

      Oh, Dad! I don’t get it ALL the time, you know, just some times. and, of course, if I ever did get a tattoo – it probably would be in full effect now that you reminded me 😉

  18. Kathy

    I got my first tattoo for my 40th birthday, the Irish Claddagh (Hands, Heart & Crown) and I’m ready for my second tattoo and Nicholas is going to design it for me. It will be a Celtic cross with his name and DOB. I want to get it on my outer ankle or the top of my foot but haven’t decided yet. As far as the pain, we as woman endure so much pain over our lives that the tattoo is nothing. Piece of cake compared to natural childbirth!!!

  19. Krista @ Can't Survive on Yarn Alone

    I am tattoo-less but have always thought about someday getting one. The thing is though I HATE needles to the point where a simple doctor visit including them has me shaking. In a way it is a good thing bc I probably would have the Nirvana smiley face on my back if I didn’t. While I still love the band, I don’t know if it is a tattoo I’d pick now.
    Krista @ Can’t Survive on Yarn Alone recently posted..Listen, learn, and NOM: HLS part 3

    1. Heather Post author

      dear Krista –

      Yarn alone love you
      Yarn alone tempt you
      Yarn alone love you
      fear is not the end of this!

      ahem. still in my head 😉

  20. Megan Orcholski

    Heather, I adore you for doing this!!!
    For all of you that have emailed me and shared your bodies with me, I so appreciate it.
    For those of you that still want to, I’m not doing my presentation until Tuesday and will take photos until Monday!! Please feel free to email me or link me.

    Believe it or not, I thought long and hard about getting a tattoo (I am an artist, a free soul, a hippy, a lover, etc) and actually made the choice not to get one. (Which can be just as meaningful as the choice to get one). I keep my “tattoos” on my walls, in my heart and everywhere my life will allow. They move and change with me. That said, I am fascinated by others who made a different choice. I love seeing the bodies with the art, hearing the stories and the meanings.

    Thanks again for doing this, all of you.
    From artist to artists, it means a lot.

  21. Cynthia (It All Changes)

    I have two that are combined in one. I got them at the same time but where two separate designs. I just didn’t know if I’d have the guts to get the second done after the first if it hurt too much. I have the Hebrew word for Redeemed and a Filigree cross a friend helped me design based on some I found and combined them.

    I would love another but Hunni hates them and threatened to get his nipple and ear pierced to connect if I got another tattoo. I’m almost tempted to take him up on it. 🙂
    Cynthia (It All Changes) recently posted..Mexican Rice Cooker Casserole

  22. Jessica

    Okay, so I have five tattoos and the latest one is the one I’m most proud of. 🙂 It goes all the way down my right side/ribcage and it’s the second verse to the serenity prayer.

    Live one day at a time,
    Enjoy one moment at a time,
    And accept hardship as the pathway to peace.

    It even has a dove I drew above the whole quote with an olive branch in it’s mouth. I love it!

    And you should DEFINITELY go with your anchor idea. That’s great!
    Jessica recently posted..If this post doesn’t make you laugh, there’s something wrong with you.

  23. Brittany

    I have one on the back of my right shoulder blade and i want another soon! Can’t decide what i want for my 2nd one!

    STORY: My grandpa passed away December 2005, and after that i wanted to get a tattoo so he would be “with me” always! My grandma is a quilter, and my grandpa would always help her with the patchwork. On each quilt, there was a square to the person, with a dedication and why they were getting the quilt. My papa red would always hide his initials on that piece. Our thing was that whenever i got a quilt the first thing i would do, would be to look for his initials 🙂 My tattoo is with 2 hearts, and where those hearts meet is my grandpa’s initials.
    Brittany recently posted..Wordless Wednesday

  24. anon

    Sorry to rain on your parade, but I think a tattoo is a bad idea. I’m older than you and I think that many people who have them regret them. You don’t need a tattoo to live in your power, to feel your strength. All you need is you ! Get a cool necklace or something with your motto on it. But do you really want to be someone’s mom with a tattoo? Over time a lot of them look nasty, trashy and gross. And yes, one day you’ll be old and wrinkled and won’t you want to look classy and dignified?

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