Tattoo Talk

I think I’ve decided on my next tattoo. Possibly my next two, as both are on the smaller – and thus more affordable – side. Logic tells me to wait until at least the end of summer, so that I can worry less about preventing early fading in the sun, and put finances toward other things coming up in the meantime.

But I’m also not really the patient type.

The first one feels pretty perfect, and that makes it harder to wait for, too. All of my tattoos thus far have been pretty personal, and these next ones are no different. The second one is becoming more and more perfect the more I think about it, too; a combination of two things that actually go together in ways I only just considered this morning as it all fell into place. I’m even thinking of getting one of my favoUrite people to sketch it for me, since there’s already a part of her in it, as well. It’d be amazing to have that extra little personal touch added in. Trust me, guys – I won’t go into detail right now, but it’s a pretty amazing idea, and very me. It would be the tattoo that’s most from inside me, actually. Only slightly more personal than the wee Kate one I just got. I’m ridiculously excited for it.

Which makes it even harder to wait. I mean, seriously, I should probably get one now-ish, and then get the other at the end of the summer, right? Haha

So little patience. For some things, anyway. For others, I seem to have a lot. I remember when I was young I built a house of cards, and my mom said something about how it had taken a lot of patience for me to sit there and move slowly enough that I didn’t spill the whole thing over a bunch of times while trying to build it. I think that was more a zone-out scenario than a patience one, though. Sometimes I just like to empty my mind and perform some small task, usually involving my hands. I like doing dishes, for example. I like making things clean and shiny – especially knives (so shiny), but even more I like the process. It requires almost no thought, and is kind of comforting, in a way. It’s like a reset sometimes.

Not sure what it is about tattoos that keeps me coming back, my mind always turning on the next way to display another small part of myself to the world. Or, actually, not the world so much as my own self. So far all of my ink is easily visible, and the next two will be as well (I of course already know where they will each go). And I love being able to see them. I love going about my day and catching a glimpse unexpectedly, or purposefully looking at them just because it makes me feel so happy when I do. Like a little momentary break from the routine – some longer than others, naturally.

I once tried to describe them as being something I thought was beautiful, and that they are a part of me. So I think parts of me are beautiful now, where I never really did before. Each one is deeply personal, and all capture some part of my personality or identity or…some other word that I can’t quite think of… The ones I have so far honour relationships that changed me and caused me to grow in particular ways, and at the same time honour the qualities in me that I like, which also grew out of those relationships. In essence, they are little parts of myself that I actually like and wish to hold on to. They are things about me that I think are beautiful.

Besides, if my greatest concern when I am older is the appearance of my tattoos, then I’ll call that a huge win. I am okay with them lasting the rest of my life.

The next two – if I stick to that same order – will be just as personal, and honour just as much truth and growth and identity as the rest. Maybe even more, in the one case.

It seems, too, like every time I get one, I’m already planning the next in my mind. And so far the one I thought I’d get first, is still being shoved further back in line, in favour of the ones that are more expressive of who I am; the ones which serve to remind me of something I don’t wish to ever forget. I’m not even sure if I’ll ever actually get that first one, but if I do, it’ll be after the other ones. I’m still saving the spot for it, though, just in case.

My real first one ended up being Hudson the polar bear I love, because of how knowing him changed the way I look at non-humans and thus how I relate to the world around me. I always got a little rush – a quickening of the heart – whenever I looked at him, and I feel the exact same when I look at this piece on my shoulder. He watches my back, and stands guard over the xoAly tag of my friend, Alysia. She actually was helping me plan the Hudson tattoo before she passed away, and I feel like that happened right as our friendship took a turn toward being even closer than we already were. We’d just started to go from being work friends to actual friends, I think, and while I think all of us who knew her will always feel despairingly robbed, our brief friendship changed me for the better, and I’m honoured to carry her with me always.

My second one that I just got a few weeks ago is to honour my cat, Kate. She was the first pet I had as an adult; the first who was my responsibility alone. We went through a lot together, and I’ll always wish she could know what it’s like to have me as her person now, because I didn’t know anything then and we learned as we went. She’d be crazy spoiled now, even more than she was. There’s a lot I would have done differently if I could go back.

But regardless, Kate was the one who made me a mom, and she will always be my most special girl. A mini-Kate now sits on my forearm, one wee paw reaching up toward me, as she always did. My girl. ❤

The next two will both have a couple of different levels in their meanings, but the second one, especially. If I can get it to work out the way I want it to, a simple little design will hold SO MUCH of my story inside of it. Even the location I’ve chosen for it; it all just fits. I can’t wait.

Let’s see what happens!

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Walking With Brody

Took Brody out for a walk earlier.  The day was calling for rain but it was unseasonably warm out, so I wanted to at least give him a chance of enjoying it a bit before the rain started.  I got us semi-bundled up and we headed out.

I kind of let him choose the direction we went in, because it’s usually just a quick jaunt along one end of our street or the other.  Once he’d decided, though, I felt we could probably get away with cutting across to another block and continue on a route we haven’t taken in quite some time.  I knew he’d like it and have the chance to investigate all the smells along the way.

The thing is, we got going, and the clouds broke apart and floated away.  The sun came out, and it got even warmer.  I ended up taking his jacket off, and decided we should just keep walking.  I think we went further than our usual long route, even!  And he was awesome.  He seemed to be in a great mood, and in no hurry, but not stopping for long at any point.  Just sniffing and peeing and trotting along the way he does.  It was so quiet and relaxing and we met other dogs and people – it was just really really nice.

i even thanked him for it when we were riding back up to the apartment in the elevator!

Obvious harm to our planet’s environment aside, it was really nice to just hang out with the puppy and explore our neighbourhood a bit and not be in any kind of rush, or have a goal in mind.

I’d never have done anything like that before living with a dog.  He has definitely changed my life – and me – in our short time together so far.  I actually have a lot of anxiety in terms of leaving my apartment, let alone interacting with others once I do so.  And in the beginning, if I saw people coming along the sidewalk Brody and I were on, I’d have mini panic attacks and brace for the possibility that I would have to acknowledge them in some way.  It was sometimes a bit better if the other people had dogs, too, but I soon learned you never really know how THAT’S going to go, either, so I started stressing about that, too.

And while Brody hasn’t turned me into a social butterfly who loves going out to roam around, he has made significant changes in how I relate to my immediate world.  For one, I actually know some of my neighbours, both in the building and in the area.  We greet one another whether there are dogs with any of us, or not.  I still have anxiety leaving the apartment and encountering others along the way, but it’s not nearly as bad.  Sometimes I barely even notice it.  Walking with Brody has taught me a new level of patience, both with the speed (or lack thereof) in which we walk, and the number of times we stop, mixed with the duration of those stops.

Brody slows me down and teaches me how to just wander and explore without any goal in mind.  I’m not just going to the store, or the subway to get to work.  On days like today, we go for a walk.  I catch myself taking in the trees and sounds and air around us.  And also taking a crazy number of pictures because I actually live in a pretty nice area, and while Brody doesn’t seem to love the park as much as I do, we both still get a lot of peace from just roaming the quiet little residential streets, as well.

I don’t think I’d ever go out on my own, or anything, but I sure do love going for long lazy walks with this cute silly puppy dog, and that’s a HUGE difference for me!