Tattoos are a big part of our history as humans. One may even go as far to say that they are in our blood, our DNA - as they have meant many things to a myriad of cultures on Earth throughout time. They are symbolic forces of strength, dignity, protection, and status. No wonder they continually elicit such strong emotional responses from the world around us. It's either repulsion or attraction.
And for many of us, the tattoo decisions that we have made when we were young, drive us straight to regret. But, I beg you to pause for a moment to reflect on why even your so-called "tramp stamp" is such a beautiful thing...
For just a moment, forget about the symbol. Forget about the attached meaning or what other people have said about it.
Remember simply the act of being tattooed. That tattoo is an expression of who you are deep down. Regardless of the symbol that you chose to represent you, it was a creative act of expression that marked an important part of your evolution in life. In that pivotal moment, you desired to share something with the world about yourself that perhaps no one would ever know otherwise.
For growth & healing or for simply sharing beauty & joy. Maybe it was a way to connect and show unity with a particular person, or with your tribe.
The truth is that no matter how long and hard you may have pondered about the decision to get tattooed, a tattoo is a commitment that no one really can "logically" make. As with most long-term life commitments, you can think about it, rationalize it, and dissect it. But eventually it will just come down to a feeling you have. And that is the beauty of it.
A tattoo is a commitment with ourselves. It comes from a place deep inside of us that is wild, carefree, expressive, expansive, passionate, and most of all--- alive and in the moment. Tattoos are birthed from a place of trusting ourselves and often it's for the first time.
I work with clients everyday who have visible tattoos that they would rather just not be . . . well, THAT visible. They are ready to project a different image of themselves into the world. And this big decision that they make is just as profound as getting the tattoo in the first place was and just as freeing.
But the idea to consider here is, that creativity and re-invention of ourselves is an inherent part of our humanity and nothing to shame ourselves for. Where we can grow from the experience of making "mistakes" is challenging ourselves with the act of acceptance.
Fact: The true, deep acceptance of ourselves and our lives as they are because of our choices, is more powerful than anything we can ever modify about our physical appearance.
So ask yourself, are you at peace with your body physically? Your life? Is it really about the tattoo? Can you love your life and who you are, through and through, despite your perceived-as flaws?
True and deep acceptance of what we feel powerless about, is the ultimate freedom. In a culture and time that gives us so many ways to be and live, it is easy to live fast and not ever feel fully accepting of who plain and simply, we just are. So I say: No regrets. Embrace & honor yourself - all of yourself. Let the lotus blossom from the mucky waters.
Celebrate your freedom, your creativity, and expression. And always do what you feel is the right for you.