This Is Your Sign to Get That Tattoo You’ve Been Thinking About

Tattoos historically have been a somewhat divisive topic in America, but they’re generally becoming a more accepted fashion statement in progressive professional settings. That being said, a lot of people still hesitate at the thought of having a piece of art permanently etched into their skin. Understandably so; tattoos are pretty much there forever. But if you have a design in mind that you want, I say just go for it.

Credit: Pinterest

I got my first tattoo on my 18th birthday. I’d been obsessing over the infinite possibilities for months beforehand, going back and forth on a few ideas every other hour, until the fateful day finally arrived and I stepped into the tattoo parlor. I had only decided that morning exactly what I wanted, and even walking in, I still felt some lingering uncertainty making my hands shake. I was getting a small sketch-like lighthouse on my ankle, an image to remind me of home before I headed off to college for the first time. It was definitely nothing to be concerned about; entirely wholesome. And yet I was incredibly nervous.

In a decidedly finite lifetime, getting a tattoo felt strangely permanent. My teeth chattered as I watched the tattoo artist run the needle down the side of my ankle. But then, very quickly, my initial uncertainty morphed into pure adrenaline and giddiness. This was my lighthouse, which would be with me for the rest of my life, a silent companion constantly reminding me of home.

Credit: Author’s Instagram

Almost two years later now, my lighthouse has been joined by some other inked-in company and more is promised to come. The satisfaction of having artwork (however small) on my body was infatuating; I needed more. This was the classic thing you hear people say: “Once you get one tattoo, you’ll never stop getting more.” Sometimes this is said as a way to deter people from breaking the seal and getting that first ink. For me, it’s exciting. Once I got past that initial thought that my tattoos had to all be deeply meaningful and personal, I was a lot less stressed about getting more in the future.

Some tattoos have deeper meanings and some are just for fun. You want to represent your interests in a deep and metaphorical way? That’s sick. Go for it! You also just think this flower looks cool? Awesome, dude! Not everything has to be extremely thought out and meaningful.

Spontaneity is liberating; don’t be afraid to have some fun with your tattoos. You only live once, so why not get some cool art on your body? If you’re most concerned about the artistry of your tattoos, it’s not too difficult to do some research on specific artists in your area instead of doing a walk-in. Ask for a consultation if you want, and look up the ratings of certain shops before you go. How you do it is all up to you, but don’t stress over it too much.

I’m not sure if all people with tattoos feel this way, but my steadily growing collection is simply a part of my body now. Just stretches of skin that happen to be colored differently. There are some that are technically better designed than others, sure, but all belong to me and have their own unique memories associated with them. There are none I dislike or regret in the least.

If you’re considering getting a tattoo, whether this is your first or your 50th, don’t overthink it. Just have fun with your idea, and take good care of it afterward!


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