I first inked myself when I was 16, and I figured it would have been my only one. The tattoo says "Aaron", as you can see. It is my cousin's signature; he passed away when he was 15 (a little over a month away from being 16) due to leukemia, in 2004. He left behind my two cousins, one my age and one a year younger, and his two parents, my aunt and uncle. He was very poetic and an amazing writer; he had many poems that were wise beyond his chronological age. The rainbow is there because as you could probably guess, he loved rainbows. Rainbows are beautiful, how could you not love them. But nothing in this world could ever be as beautiful as his soul was, and still remains. His immediate family (my cousins and aunt and uncle) have the same tattoo also, and a cousin on the opposite side of the family has it on her neck (she was the first to get it). Even my grandfather has it : ) It's an amazing reminder of someone who meant so much to all of us.
Excuse my awkward-looking foot. It was hard to take a nice picture of the tattoo and one of my foot at the same time, as I was positioned in an awkward way. I got this tattoo in my last year of high school, so when I was around 18. It's my favorite song by Coldplay (click the word "song" to have a listen). Coldplay was all I listened to in high school, and this song gives me goosebumps when I listen to it (especially the line: "And it's you I see, but you don't see me. And it's you I hear, so loud and so clear"). It's still a favorite, and whenever I look at this tattoo it reminds me of my happy memories of my high school days.
3. "4 - 2 - 6"
I got this tattoo in my first year of university, when I was 18 or 19 (can't remember exactly). It's kindof hard to tell where it is in location of my body, but it's right underneath the crease of my elbow on my right fore-arm. This is somewhat embarrassing, but I love the way this turned out, and I'm glad of what happened with the tattoo. This was supposed to be the date of my sister's birthday in roman numerals. Once I decided to get it done, I made the appointment, didn't tell my sister about it (I wanted it to be a surprise) and within a week I had it inked on my arm. When I showed my sister, she asked if it was a joke. Why? Because her birthday is May 26th... May... as in the 5th month... not the 4th. After debating on getting it removed, I decided it was something I could definitely work with it, which leads me to my next tattoo!
4. "5 - 1 - 5"
Like the previous tattoo, this is also underneath the crease of my elbow, but on my left fore-arm. I got this pretty soon after my last one. Realizing that I liked the roman numerals and didn't want to cover them up on my right arm, or pay copious amounts of money to remove the tattoo all-together, I figured I would do the same on my left. By the same, I mean mix up another birthday: my mother's. Her birthday is April 15th, which is the 4th month (not the 5th). So, on my right arm, I have my mom's birth month and my sister's birth date, and on my left, I have my sister's birth month and my mom's birth date. It also turns out that by doing this, the tattoos are symmetrical on both arms. They're pretty old so I need to get them fixed up; they both changed over time (not in the same way). But I still love them. But this is a good reason to always double check spelling, dates, and anything else on your tattoos before getting them! With the excitement of getting a tattoo, sometimes you are just too pre-occupied with getting it, and you may mess it up yourself. I'm fortunate because it turned out nicely and I like it this way, but others are not as fortunate!
This tattoo is on the right side of my wrist on my right arm. You can see the creases of the underneath area of my hand below the tattoo. Like my previous ones, it's a little faded (to be expected) and sooner or later I'll have to touch it up. This was a very spontaneous tattoo; I was in Toronto to see Coldplay in the summer of 2009 with my friends Dave and Taryn, and Dave dared me to get a tattoo to kill some time before the concert. Me, in the moment, took the dare and got this precious little R. Although spontaneous, I love this tattoo. My last name starts with R, and so does my mother's maiden name, so it pretty much encompasses all-things-family for me. I love the fade inside of the R, it adds a little oomph to the letter.
6. My Girly Flowers
This was my second spur of the moment tattoo. You can see that #3 tattoo is above it on my arm. I got this in the fall of 2009 when I was 19. I had originally made an appointment to get a tattoo on my finger, but the tattoo artist said it would have to be re-touched much more often. I was so determined to get a tattoo, and I was not planning on leaving the shop until I had a new one. So after about a half an hour (wayyy too little time) of brain-storming, I decided to go with flowers. If you know my personality, you would know that I'm kind-of like a guy, and I'm not very girly what-so-ever. So this was my little way of saying "look, I can be girly, too!". It's a beautiful tattoo, but it didn't mean as much to me as my other ones, and it just looked like a stamp on my arm. It was out of place in respect to my other tattoos, and I didn't like the "flow" of it all. I went to a medical office to inquire about laser removal, and even got a test-spot done to see if I could handle the pain (which I barely could). So about a year ago, I came up with the idea for the tattoo that I got yesterday. I drew it on paper, I photoshopped it, I drew it on my arm, and after a year of thought, I decided I wanted it done. Which leads to number 7!
7. "för mig själv, jag håller inga preferenser bland blommor, så länge de är vilda, fria, spontana"
This is my newest, and I am so happy with how it turned out. As you can see, the beautiful flowers still remain, and are still quite visible. But over it, is my favorite quote: For myself, I hold no preferences among flowers, so long as they are wild, free, spontaneous. I'm pretty lucky because the quote has to do with flowers, so it ties in quite nicely. However, as you can tell, it's in a different language: swedish. My farmor (pronounced "fa-more", which is grandma in swedish) was born in sweden, as was my father. She passed away two summers ago, and I miss her dearly. She was one of the most beautiful women I'll ever have the privilege of knowing, and I know she'd appreciate the swedish language on my arm. My father, who is not very keen on my tattoos, also likes the idea; he knew I wasn't happy with the flowers (I've gotten a few "I told you so!" statements from him over that, haha) and he graciously helped me with the translation of this quote, and he loves it as-well.
So that's my tattoo story! Hopefully this helps you on future tattoo endeavors. They're not for everybody, and you always have to think about the one common rule: Will I regret this when I'm old?
I also hope this post helped you get to know me a little more (it's pretty personal), but like I said, I want to be honest.
What's your tattoo story?