In 2009 I took the giant leap into personal body mods. Although, after my 18th birthday I got my tongue pierced, I had then told myself it’d be the last piercing I would get since all others just looked gaudy and unprofessional (in my eyes, on me) that once removed they would leave nothing but tasteless appeal in the sense of holes in weird places. However, that didn’t quite hinder my perception on tattoos to which I was very keen on getting. After months of deliberation and a few random questionnaires online through various forums, I finally decided I would get a quote of some sort.
Obviously this quote had to have meaning, but I needed something short that would fit on my wrist. Going back to my forums and asking people for words or phrases or even images that would best describe a theme of freedom. Some said bird – to which I thought of the swallow, I’m not much of a sailor, so that was a no-go -, other terms came about and some even suggested just wings, but none were fitting the bill. That’s when I coined my own phrase: Can’t clip my wings!
I threw this idea out to my “focus groups” (illegitimate) and diverse opinions came about, from “Why would you do that?” to “What does that even mean?” along with thrown in suggestions like adding “you” to the beginning of the phrase. I considered it, but then realized that this would single people out (this wasn’t what I wanted). I wanted to not only let people know that they are already warned that they can’t stop me from being me, but also to remind myself that I can’t/shouldn’t let others stop me of get in my way.
There after, I was pleased and excited that I had my tattoo in mind and a font in thought out that when I walked into a local, well-known tattoo/piercing salon I was able to make an appointment for the same day and be in and out within an hour. Once it was done I was thrilled, and when I finally got the protective layer of fluorescent pink tape and gauze I took a picture and posted it online to some of my most frequented forums and got some nasty, un-enthused reactions: “What’s your tattoo say?, although they seem confused of its meaning I don’t care; if it means I have to explain it a million times in my life, so be it! It’s there because that’s what I wanted and it makes me feel a little more complete and isn’t that what we generally strive for as we grow and try to find ourselves?