I have been contemplating getting a new tattoo for sometime now, I flirted with a few ideas, things I like and came to a few various conclusions based on where I am at this particular point in my life. This, of course, is something that is going to be imprinted on my body for the rest of my life so it needs to not only be meaningful but also have significance.
I view my body like a map of my life, it tells my story, which continues to be written daily with the aging process.
I was born with two birth marks that I still have, an upside down crown shape mark at the top of my thigh and a small non-descript one on my right ankle. I have a marking from being a toddler, a small tablet sized white scar at the top of my thigh on my crotch line from where my Dad (so I am told) squeezed a spot there whilst changing my nappy. My knees show faint silvery scars and purple patches from grazes as a school child playing in the street, falling over my first bicycle handle bars. My first pet Rosie, a black and white dwarf rabbit, has left me with a little line scar on my left ring finger where she bit me (and wouldn't let go) whilst I was cleaning out her hutch at seven. If I stick my tongue out, I have a noticeably "flowery" edge to it from where I fell off a bar stool at nine and bit my tongue in my Dad's kitchen and reaching behind me for a drink. The roof of my mouth has a smooth patch from where I burnt it eating a cheese and potato pie from the bakery near my Granny's house at eleven.
My little sister's place in my life stamped by the small scratch dint she left on my face when she was a toddler. Freckles that increase as the years go by, my fair skin aging and being exposed to sun, remind me of family holiday's abroad and getting sunburned whilst playing in water. My growth and development are noted by stretch marks, hips, thighs, breasts 12, 15, 18, 22. The passage of becoming a woman. Skin on my face already aging, crease lines on my brow - years of laughing and frowning. The fashionista's feet are a patchwork of colours from rubbing shoes and mishapped from wearing teetering shoes with pointed toes. Holes from piercings and dints from those closed up.
Turmoil is marked too, my knuckles on my right hand remain scarred by callouses from years of bulimia, I have faint white scars from periods of self harm. A tiny egg shaped scar at the bottom of my back from when I first moved out of home and still plagued by self harming thoughts I kept my razors in my bed and lead on one by accident.
My body for the most part will tell it's own story, as it has already done but does not always tell the stories of the mind, it does not denote the opinions and emotions around the marks. My tattoos however are deliberate and meaningful in their own right. The card print down my spine, the club, heart, spade and diamond; a tribute to my survival of my anorexia. My view of life being a game and having to play the hand you're given and also in relation to the "Solitaire" poem I wrote about my experience. The little ruby on my left buttock - both comical due to it's positioning and important in it's meaning. The ruby was done with my oldest friend (Lucy) Quinn as she too got the same design in black (Lucy in the sky with Diamonds). The ruby to me represents reinvention, regenerations and rebuilding the self - renaming and re birthing. It's a salute to the more frivolous things in life, joie de vivre and the riches life has to give as well as being a representation of my nickname.
I know my body will naturally continue to write it's story on itself but I too wish to add further to the story of my mind, express my creativity and pay tribute to the trials and tribulations, joys and triumph of my spirit too. I'll keep thee posted on what I decide to have inked next...