My experience with tattoos started my senior year of high school. I’d been thinking about getting a palm tree tattoo for almost two years. Since I had just turned 18, I decided to finally go through with it. I didn’t what shop to go to, so my school counselor told me about the shop she had gone to. I went with a friend during school so that my mom wouldn’t suspect anything. I had been mentally preparing myself for the pain all day. It turned out to be bigger than I wanted, but I didn’t care as long as I could cover it up. It took about thirty minutes and turned out to be sixty bucks, which, at the time, I didn’t know meant cheap. Of course, when the artist was done, he told me about how much I bled and how I picked the most painful part of my body to get a tattoo: my ribs. I was just glad it was over.
After getting my first tattoo, I paid more attention to tattoos I’d see on strangers. For months, I longed to be able to show off my tattoo. I hadn’t told my mom or sister because I was taught that “my body was a temple of God” and tattoos were like graffiti making the temple trashy. The night before coming to Chico, I decided to tell my mom so that she wouldn’t think college made me go crazy. I wanted to be able to experience college in peace without worrying about her finding out through someone else. It was a very emotional moment for me because I felt that I had disrespected her. She told me it was okay as long as I didn’t get anymore and that she still loved me. Deep down I knew that wouldn’t be my last tattoo. And it wasn’t.
As of right now, I have four tattoos, two of which she still doesn’t know about.