13 months ago I was 32 years old and had zero tattoos. Now I’m 1-week shy of 34 and I have two! w00t!
My first tattoo was one that I desperately needed. The words, the meaning, the emotions, even the pain – a physical manifestation of the pain in my soul – were all so integral to my healing process. My first tattoo is my Daddy’s signature from the last birthday card he sent me and I absolutely adore seeing it on my wrist every day. Getting that tattoo on the one year anniversary of his death was something my soul needed so badly, no words can describe.
Getting my first tattoo was a sacred and amazing experience. Period.
My second tattoo is one that I always thought would be my first. It’s a phrase my Grandma Karen used to say in a sing-songy voice whenever I felt upset, lost, troubled, or confused. “This tooooo shall pass, this too shall pass…” and I have said that phrase over and over throughout the years to get me through some of the hardest times. I’ve even written it on my arm to get me through bad days.
I originally wanted to get “This too shall pass” on the second anniversary of losing my Daddy but that night, after work, I got to Mia and we were having such a great night talking and hanging out (I even convinced her to leave the house for dinner) that I realized I didn’t *need* to get this tattoo.
But I still wanted it…
So about two weeks after 02/24, Tracy and I were randomly texting about how we were due to catch-up and I asked if she would be down to take a fieldtrip with me to Cocoa Beach where I’d gotten my first tattoo and accompany me for my second. She said yes and it turned out she wanted a tattoo as well.
Four days, two emails, and one reschedule later… we were booked for Sunday, March 20th at 12:30pm.
Which is about 1 hour after Greg had to take he and Tracy’s daughter, Sky, to the hospital because she had a fever and flu-like symptoms.
We were thisclose to canceling. Tracy got in my car after a huge cry on the way to meet me and we debated turning around at least 50 times. Then Greg sent a photo of Sky eating cheetoe’s with a huge grin, waiting the seemingly endless hospital-waiting-room-wait, and Tracy was good to go.
By that point, her nerves had shifted to me because Vince was home sick with flu-like symptoms and I felt like a horrible friend for taking her away from her child – not to mention leaving my husband at home sick – for a freaking tattoo of all things.
But our worrying was pretty much for nothing. Vince was fine – he just slept all day. Sky was fine – she just needed an antibiotic for an ear and chest infection. And we got our tattoos while reminiscing about our crazier days before kids and husbands.
(and after sharing anti-anxiety meds over lunch)
As with my first tattoo, I wanted this phrase somewhere I could see it every day. I am hyperaware of the fact that good times – and life – can pass all too quickly. I need a daily reminder that tough times, bad times, the worst of times… those too shall pass.
So I tucked this phrase away on the upper inside of my arm so it’s not in-the-face of my more conservative co-workers, but still easy for me to see and close to my heart.
Getting my second tattoo was a fun, silly, somewhat stressful but totally love-filled experience with one of my dearest friends. And I wouldn’t change anything about it for the world.
And Tracy’s tattoo?
Well, one day we’ll tell Sky about how Mommy and Aunt Ali got this amazing tattoo juuuust for her. And we may or may not include the part of the story where she was at the hospital with Daddy while it went down. 😉