Tattoo Time: I did it!

image of bold quoteThis past Tuesday, while in Calgary, I decided I wanted to finally get that tattoo I’ve been talking about for a few months now. I looked up tattoo shops, read reviews, set my Sidekix app (think of Waze, but for walkers) for the route, and went on my merry way. Once I got to the shop, I was greeted by a girl who told me that they didn’t have any availability that day, but that I could come back the next day.

I’m such a spontaneous and spur of the moment kind of girl that I was kind of bummed. While walking back, I came across another tattoo shop with a sign on the door. “Today, September 19, 2018, we will be closed.”

Hmm. Okay. What are the odds, right? Just on that particular day that shop was closed and the other one didn’t have an opening. Part of me giggled and the other part of me wondered if it was more.

Was I trying to be a poser?
Was I trying too hard?
Was I really sure that I was ready to make such a bold choice?

I do very much believe in signs and I took these two happenings as such, even though I feel like it was more me, on a subconscious level for whatever reason, looking for an out.

And maybe that’s just what happens and you take it for what it is worth, without looking too much into what it could mean.

Fast-forward to the next day. I was told to call the tattoo shop at 1pm. As I watched the clock grow closer and closer to 1pm, I thought of the previous day’s happenings. I also thought about how excited I was. I found myself wondering again if it was something I really wanted to do. To be transparent, it is so my nature to overthink things, but it doesn’t bode well with being impulsive either. There are plenty of times when I can put the overthinking aside and jump on whatever thought or idea I have. For whatever reasons I decided to take a look at the tattoo shop website again and read the FAQs. Under one of the headings, it said, “Do not overthink it“. (Hello, positive sign!)

Interesting because that’s totally what I was doing and had been doing. Overthinking it all, which, honestly, comes as no surprise.  A tattoo is something I’ve wanted consistently for the past few months, so why was I buying into goofy “signs” right now? I reminded myself that this has been something I’ve wanted for a while, called, and made my appointment.

The whole process was super easy and I felt really comfortable with Alex at Studio Phi Tattoo. After playing around with finding the perfect placement on my wrist, it was time. Eeek!! There’s nothing like being in a more vulnerable place that just makes the words come out and that’s what happened during the tattoo time. At one point I even asked her if she gets nervous drawing on a person’s skin knowing that it will be there forever. I mean, really Kristin?! She laughed and said that she tries not to think about that. Fair enough. Pretty soon (about 10 minutes) it was all over. I am so happy with how it turned out. (And no, it didn’t hurt.)

Most importantly though, I am happy for how it makes me feel. I love looking down at my wrist and seeing something that lifts me up. And that’s exactly what I wanted. I love what it stands for, and what it means to me. It makes me feel just a little bolder. Just a little more bad ass-y. Just a little more confident.

Maybe I can inspire someone by being a mirror. I remember when I was in Calgary back in July and I saw a girl with a lot of tattoos and pink hair walking down the street like she was bursting with confidence. I wanted to hug her for being bold and standing out and for all that it encompasses. Looking at her, I was envious because she was doing her, every bit of her. She was being truly authentic to herself as a person and I think that passing her on the street will always have a defining moment for me in my mind. I didn’t realize it at the time, but she was a mirror to me. Showing me what it could look like if I slowly let go of wondering about any judgment that may come my way.

If you remember my past post, I said that I wanted a wrist tattoo, but that I was nervous because of what people might think. Since then I am moving closer and closer, albeit slowly, to that place of trying not to care what other’s think. I’m realizing that I do not need approval from anyone else. That I don’t need to fit in a box. That it’s okay to be me, whatever that means and whatever that looks like, tattoo or not. I’m also growing to the place where I realize this isn’t an overnight kind-of-thing. It’s a gradual process and one that takes consistency. One that takes a lot of patience and even forgiveness because some days are harder than others…

But I’m learning that that is okay. That there’s a reason this is a journey. That, inevitably, I’m going to fail at times, but it’s in those times that I need to love and accept myself more and more because that’s exactly what I deserve.

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