Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Fear cracked open.

I can't imagine I'm the only one who has had the experience of being scared of something for a long time until SNAP I'm not scared anymore.  It's as if all the worry has built up and up and up until it becomes too much to support and suddenly it all falls apart.  The phrase that I've heard that describes this is fear cracks open.*

I've wanted a tattoo for a long time, but I was scared.

Would I always love it? Would it look stupid 20 years from now? Would people view me differently? Would it hurt so badly it would make me cry?

Then fear cracked open.  I made the appointment, I had my consultation, we e-mailed about the design, and last Friday I went to the studio.

A lotus flower with eight petals to remind me of the Eightfold Path: right speech, right action, right livelihood, right effort, right awareness, right concentration, right thought, and right understanding.  Pink for the Buddha.  It's on the bottom of my right forearm, a good place to serve as a reminder when I get knocked off center.

I go back in a month to have it touched up, and I tried to figure out how to thank the artist who gave me this beautiful, permanent reminder of who I want to be.  I'm going to thank her the only way I know how:

I'm knitting her a scarf.

* That's from a Sue Bender book, probably Everyday Sacred, but maybe one of her other ones.  If I remember correctly, she was in a sweat lodge at the time.


  1. Absolutely Beautiful. Awesome symbolism. Stunning achievement. Congratulations!

    Love, Lynn

  2. I would never get one... or so I thought until I saw yours! It's beautiful. Would you post a zoomed out perspective? I'd like to see it in proportion to your arm.
    Thanks for sharing, and your story. I don't exactly "fear" those concerns of yours, but they are all valid reasons I've never considered it. Maybe for my 63rd birthday... my old dry saggy skin. I'm sure the tattoo artist would be VERY supportive for all the wrong reasons, don't you think?

  3. Congratulations! I love what you chose, and it's meaning. I can't wait to see it in person!!

  4. I'm so jealous!!! As I have gotten older I have tossed around the tattoo idea because of where I am in life and how I would love to have one. However, my skin and my history with cancer doesn't allow it. So GOOD FOR YOU for facing your fear head on!!!! It is beautiful!

    Beautiful scarf too!!!

  5. i like your tattoo, can i use the design? i am lost and i love the buddhist symbolism. i want to follow buddhism myself. i just have to make the commitment.