My First Tattoo

I had always wanted a tattoo, but my parents had made it very clear that it was something they would never allow. When I turned 18 years old I decided I wanted one, and would be getting one very soon. I have always been someone who believes in the “my body, my choice” mindset and although I felt bad going behind my parents back to get what I wanted, I knew I would never regret it.

So it was that in June 2016, I got my first tattoo. I got it done along with one of my best friends; it was a matching rib tattoo. Honestly, I never thought I would get a matching tattoo due to the implications of commitment, but she is someone I know I can disagree with and still laugh with, and I know she will never leave my life.

I had previously watched Youtube videos, because of course, I needed to know what the procedure would be like. I was so nervous about the pain, possible risk of infection, my parents finding out, and most importantly, what if the artist messed up?! My friend on the other hand, was not nervous about any of this as she had already gotten tattoos and knew way more than I did.

We scheduled our appointment and went on our way. When we were waiting to be called, she looked at me and laughed because I was so visibly nervous. They called us in, and asked who wanted to go first. My friend forced me to approach the chair and stay still – she was nervous I would chicken out. We had chosen a written tattoo that read “Forever” in Spanish, which would be placed on our right rib – a place I figured my parents would never find out.

The tattoo artist saw what we wanted, put it on a plastic paper, wet that paper and put it on my ribs, like a temporary tattoo. At that point, I wanted to run – I was happy with that tattoo as is and loved that there was no pain. But instead, I smiled nervously, said I liked the way it looked and the placement, and that I was ready. I sat in the chair and saw him dip the needle in black ink, and he turned on the needle, making a loud/low, buzzing noise. It was a sharp, constant pain. Though not too horrible a feeling, having it right on my ribs was not fun.

Within 5 minutes, he said “Okay, it’s all done, go have a look in the mirror,” and I was shocked! Everything had been over in such a short amount of time, and it had turned out a lot better than I had thought. The healing time was not long, and the process was easy, although because of the placement of the tattoo it hurt at the beginning to sleep on my right side, or wear tight bras.

I waited four months to get my second tattoo, and after that I waited 10 months to get my third tattoo. My dad currently only knows about one, while my mom knows about all three. I do plan on getting more tattoos, and I think that the mentality of being ‘addicted’ to tattoos is real, and dangerous, but fun!