I want to have a tattoo.
This is what first came into my mind while I was listening to the new song of Coldplay entitled Ink. Maybe I am just curious how painful it is to have an ink. Or I just want to have a mark in my body, para lang masabi na I have a something that has a deep personal meaning in my life.
I have college friends who got their tattooes. My former roommate made his own design and asked permission from his wife to have it tattooed. Two of my lady friends have their tattooes at their back. I remember they chose a butterlfly and a Chinese character for their body ink. I told them, soon I will have my own tattoo but my words just got blew by the wind. It never happened.
One time I had a chat with my former officemate, she’s a lady by the way and our conversation went to the topic of having an ink. I was surprised when her parents especially her dad is open to the idea of having a tattoo but for a certain tattoo – the medal of Saint Benedict. For most Catholic, the medal is famous because of the belief that the medal can drive away evil spirits and as form of protection. My lady friend wants to have it inked at her back.
I remember almost the same scenario when I was still in college. I remember my former Dorm Master who were assigned previously in Vatican. He almost became a priest if I was not mistaken. Eventually he went back to Baguio and became a Religion professor. I knew him as well more on as a holy type of person. I was surprised when he told us that he has a tattoo. It was made in Italy during his stay there and inked the symbol of his congregation.
Indeed there are reasons why people have tattoo. We don’t just put a mark in our body for no reason. Unless of course if we are just too delinquent and considered our body as a blank piece of paper and write whatever we want.
I believe having a tattoo is a big decision to make. It is binded with our emotions and experiences in life. We want to have stories of our tattoo. We want to put a symbol that will remind us. We put the face of our dear love ones or family who already departed. We chose lines or saying we used as our mantra in life.
Then I realize that living in this world gives us the opportunity not only to own a tattoo but to leave a tattoo to other people. It is an invisible kind of tattoo but remains for eternity. We leave an indelible ink to people we interact with. We are our own artist in leaving tattoo to other people.
If I will assess myself, I could say the tattooes I will leave behind are mixed with good and bad tattooes. There are people who will remember my tattoes as their worst encounter with me while some will cherish the inks I will leave behind. Some tattooes I will leave are deep beyond the epidermis of their bodies, until it reach their hearts. While some would just be like a henna tattoo, only superficial and soon be faded by time. I might give excruciating pain during the process but I hope those pains would soon be changed with joys.
But the worst thing that I could leave behind are tattooes which are mistakenly inked. Those words that I could never get back because they became permanent. Those heartaches I caused because of my personal pride and selfishness. Those tattooes made during the times when I closed my eyes and became insensitve in taking into consideration the feelings of other people.
I want to have a tattoo but this time I want to leave a tattoo that will remind other people of what I was,
what I am, and
what I would be.