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When Pigs Fly

My best friend always said "when pigs fly". So when she died in 2001, I made a vow to her...she would live on in many ways, including in the ink that I would get in her memory. I knew right away what I wanted. A flying pig. I told the important people in our lives, my parents, her parents, and mutual friends. Everyone was for it, except my mom. I've never made a lot of money, so funding was an issue. Not the mention the fear I had of the potential pain I would be in. Then one day, my dad called me up, and asked if I still wanted the tattoo. Of course I did. He offered to pay for it, and my step mom went with me for moral support. I don't have a very high tolerance for pain. But, finally, a few years after I made the vow, I was doing it. I now have a baby pig with wings and a halo, flying over the clouds on my shoulder blade. (And it didn't even hurt that much). As soon as it was over, my step mom and I ran to see my dad at work, showed him. He got tears in his eyes. I would assume because Rebecca was like a daughter to him. I then rushed to Rebecca's mom. Still bleeding and still swollen, I showed her that I finally went through with it. We cried together, and spent the rest of the afternoon talking about Rebecca. My mom finally saw it a few days later, and was disappointed in me, but what ever. It's my body, and she was my best friend. It was the best thing I could think of to do in her memory. Everyone who sees it now, of course they ask the reason behind it, and I get nothing but compliments on it. And since I now know what it's like, I will continue to get more, of things that I care deeply about. That I won't "regret" when I get old and gray.
sab01 sab01 26-30, F 11 Responses Aug 23, 2012

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Please post a pic, touching story 😊

thanks, friend:)

I like your idea to make a good memory of your friend in different activities. As for "tattoo approach"...it`s just the way to get to remember the very thing - the mean not the aim or whatever they call it. And that goal is superb.<br />
Yes, sometimes people DO think of some attributes of this or that subculture. But if it were for me, I would actually arrive at job interview wearing a bussiness suit, perfect shooes and that tattoo. And if asked would just explain everything as it was and probably get the job for sincerity and determination, lol. <br />
So I am with you. And sorry for my English since I`m not a native speaker.

your english is just fine my friend

What a wonderful thing you have done.and with such love for your friend.<br />
Blesed be

I'll make my reply in order.<br />
#1. I think honest discussion is inherently supportive--much more so than insipid cheer leading for emotional decisions. And I can assure you, my sentiments are nothing if not authentic. <br />
#2. Your father is very generous, if callous in his insensitivity to your mother's feelings about tatooing her daughter. Still, the point was that people who are interested in tattoos tend to be the least able to afford them, and once acquiring them tend to stay in the lower economic strata. <br />
#3. Let's not reduce this larger concept to being all about you. Judgment is the larger issue, and there's a mountain of data out there suggesting that people do it every time they see someone with a tattoo, and about half those judgments are negative. Regardless whether those judgments are valid, they are certainly real, and that is the bargain you made when you decided to put a permanent doodle on your body. About half the people who see it will consider you less intelligent and of lower character than if you had left your body as it was. A smaller subset of fundamentalist Bible thumpers will consider you Godless for your lack of respect for God's admonition against tattoos in Leviticus. The judgement has nothing to do with you or me, but it will always be there. <br />
#4. Excellent. My hat is off to you. The SPCA is also one of my favorite charities. <br />
#5. Meaning is in the mind of the beholder. Your opinion and mine, again, are meaningless here. <br />
#6. Have I put you down? I said what I thought about tattoos, and put that in statistical perspective. Do you consider anything less that blind support for something that others consider patently unwise to be a put down? <br />
#7. The position that if you can't say anything nice (although I wouldn't consider anything I said cruel) than you should deprive yourself of free speech sounds like prior censorship. Don't say anything we don't want to hear, that won't make us feel good about ourselves. This is a pernicious idea that elevates feelings above reality.

#1. "Please respond with authenticity, support and respect."<br />
#2. My father offered to pay for it. I did not ask for the money.<br />
#3. Don't judge me when the only thing you know about me is I have a tattoo.<br />
#4 we do do things in memory of her every single year. Like silent auctions, and all proceeds go to the SPCA. Her favorite thing in life was animals.<br />
#5. Just because I have a tattoo does not mean that i am any less of a person then someone without.<br />
#6. You are entitled to your opinion. I dont have to agree with you. You dont have to agree with me. But do not put me down. <br />
#7. If you have nothing nice or supportive to say to me or anyone else in this group, then don't say a word. Thanks and have a good day.

Well said sabo1.

Well said . I think it's a lovely thing u have done in memory of your friend.its your body and if people don't like it well that's there problem.i have several and if I could afford more i would have more.if people don't like them well they don't have to look.i am sure your friend will be smiling down on you

Oldhippy68, why is "detractors" in quotation marks? Who are you quoting? I would hope for something more engaging than "screw 'em," but this seems to be the dismissive attitude of the body-vandalism subculture, and it's perfectly consistent with sab01's "what ever. It's my body...." Yes, it's her body, but these are also her relationships, and people who love her are bound to be hurt when they see her do self-destructive things.<br />
<br />
I noticed also that she had to have someone else pay for it, which is another signature trait of the tattooed among us; they are far more likely to belong to the economic underclass. Once they get inked up, of course, they're much more likely to stay there. The choice to memorialize people with vain attachments is inauthentic and self serving. You could actually support the deceased's favorite cause, or establish one in her name--do something that really mattered--or pay someone to doodle on your shoulder blade. Which way would you prefer to be memorialized?

As for those "detracters".... screw 'em, you got your ink in a easily covered spot for job interviews and work settings. Every one of my tatts has a backstory and I could give a monkey jump what other folks think (probably because I suspect "think" might be giving them more credit then they deserve). Just remember, with sufficient thrust, pigs fly just fine.

This obviously means a lot to you, but that won't change how other people perceive you when they see what you've done to your body. Polling data suggests that large segments of the population see people with tattoos as being of lower intelligence and questionable character. Potential employers won't care about the touching story that you've chosen to memorialize with a doodle on your body. They might well question the wisdom of hiring someone who feels the need to document her relationships through "body art." You can dress it up any way you like, but once you get passed the maudlin verbiage, it's just so much more "look at me" narcissism.

That is very sweet. Wherever she is, I am sure she is very proud of you. God bless you.

Oh my, I almost said the exact same thing in a different wording. I was about to post my response when EP notified me that I needed to sign in. After doing so, I scanned through the comments and did a double take upon seeing this. :P

my mother tounge is hindi i may not be able to convey my feelings as i am feeling now any way very nice ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------best wishes for you<br />
with regards<br />
anil tripathi