Skin Deep.

For as long as I can remember, I’ve had an unconventional personality.  I always craved to be older, wiser and to be different.  My interest was never that of other people my age.  I took pride in being unique.  To this day, I still do.  There is something exciting about not being the same as everyone else..  I see this as a good quality, even if it has a negative connotation to some.

Back in the day many people thought tattoos were taboo.  It was frowned upon to outwardly express yourself so boldly.  For me, it was exciting.  The idea that it was a permanent marking on my body was not frightening.  It was exhilarating.  This wasn’t a decision I took lightly.  I knew that when the day came that I could break out of my shell and into something more artistic, I would be ready.  The group of people I surrounded myself with were similar in their want (or need) to be expressive.  Some did so by playing music, some by their amazing hand at art, some by personal style.  That was me.  I had no artistic ability, yet I knew how to be comfortable in my own skin by not following the rules of traditional style.  I had fun playing around with different fashion attempts.  I tried almost every hair color on the color wheel.  The only thing that frightened me was being like everyone else.  I had a personality that strived to be different.  Around age twenty-two, I got my first tattoo.  I didn’t rush to the first tattoo shop at the age of 18 because I realized that what interested me at this age, would likely change in a few short years.  My first tattoo is still less that great.  The artwork was sub-par and my selection was too.  Oddly, I have never changed it.. it looks exactly the same today!  I kept my first two tattoos out of sight, for the most part.  I was not ashamed by any means, but my job didn’t allow them to show.

I’ll never forget the day I came home with a tattoo on my arm.  Let me paint the picture for you..  I was 25 years old, married, living on my own, working a full-time job.  I showed my family my tattoo and almost immediately disgraced the entire family.  Now, I can look back and laugh, but that day was a bit more frustrating.  It’s permanent, people!  I took pride in my choice of ink and you are not bursting my happy bubble!  My grandmother, oh, I love that lady, but she’s hardcore sometimes.  She’s southern.  Very southern.  Did you know that I was doomed to Hell for having said tattoo..?  Yep!  She said so herself.  In the very southern accent that she still carries!  When the sleeve work continued, the dooming excitement grew boring.  I think she may have felt defeated by then.  I mean, really, what was she going to do.. wash it off?!  So, yes, I have a few tattoos now.  I love them all and some days crave for more.  But then there is this…

I am now in my mid-thirties.  I am married (again!), have three beautiful children, a home business and working on many more adventures.  My home business is in the fashion industry.  I find it funny, given my non-traditional sense of style, that I work in fashion.  I have fallen prey to the idea that moms wear mom clothes.  Yes, I do.  Yoga pants, tank tops, flip flops and my hair in a messy bun.  This is me on most days.  I have recently been encouraged by my own desire and that of others to embrace what I once had..  a drive to be ME.  To be more than yoga pants and no make-up.  To take pride in my appearance, as I once did.  In this manifested change, I have noticed one thing…  I do have the passion to look better than the mom who rolled out of bed, threw on comfy clothes, and headed out the door.  I do care about the persona that I employ.  I am better than that.  While there is nothing wrong with comfy clothes and messy hair, I am a new business owner and must portray myself as such.  That said, I am tattooed.  I gravitate to dark colored clothing, yet not all fashion is accessible in dark colors.  There are times when pink is a necessary evil.  (trust me, it was tough to wear pink with not a stitch of black!)  Or the day I purchased a coral/orange/red top.  You may think this is all trivial, but it is not.  It is an honest debate that goes through me every day.  How to be that fashionable lady/business woman/mom without sacrificing my own desires.  Many years ago, I consciously  made the decision to tattoo a large portion of my body, well knowing that my life will always be changing.  When I did so, I also knew that even when my life is changing, my being won’t.  I will always have that spunk to be different.  All I need now is to find my balance between fashionable and unique.  Luckily, I am among the most amazing people who empower each other and accept differences!

In the end, we can mold ourselves to our ever-changing surroundings, or embrace who we truly are.  But whatever you do, do it with all of your being, and do it to make your heart happy!!