I Have Tattoos And I Am Still A Respectable Human Being

I Have Tattoos And I Am Still A Respectable Human Being

Don't judge a book by it's cover.... right?
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Tattoos, man. Where do I even start?

So, I got my very first tattoo underage, but with my mother's permission. My brother was deploying and I had wanted to get his Navy pilot wings tattoo'd for a while and that just seemed like a fitting time to do it. Don't get me wrong, I was totally way too young to be getting a tattoo but my mid-teen self thought nothing of it. I just wanted that tattoo.

Four years and four tattoo's later I'm hooked. Being a Graphic Design major I got extremely lucky to be in a field that is so unbelievably accepting of things slightly out of the norm- whether that be in your work or in your style. Dyed hair, tattoo's, piercings, we've all got 'em, and that's the way I like it. Sure, I may not be tatted from head to toe, but I've got a couple that people are skeptical of when they see them.

Tattoo's used to have a very dirty connotation associated with them. They were something that bikers and pirates and "thugs" used to have and I was always taught that they were a little taboo, but nothing too crazy. Now, as a young adult who can form her own views, I would never talk badly about someone's tattoos. I find them creative and beautiful and interesting and I will never understand why there are people in this world who don't.

I may have tattoos, but I should be still just as eligible for a job as anyone else. I am just as qualified to get my Graphic Design degree- or any other degree I would want to pursue even with my tattoos. Tattoo's don't cloud good judgment and they aren't any indication of somebody's intelligence level. Tattoos are a way of expression, a beautiful and amazing thing if you think about it. People like myself have been passionate enough about a design that we have gone through the pain to have it permanently inked into my skin and if that's not pretty bad ass then I couldn't tell you what is.

I am in a sorority, I still pray before dinner with my family, I can make some beautiful art and surprise- all are done with tattoo's peppering my skin. Just like going to church doesn't necessarily make you a good person, having tattoo's is not necessarily an indication of a bad one. I am still a college student pursuing a degree, I'm a lifeguard in the summer who works with children and camps and I attended Catholic School for a large portion of my life. Respectable qualities? I think so.

Without knowing that I had any tattoos, people often don't think of me to be someone who does have them. I'm not sure if this upsets me or not, but it definitely does disappoint me. What does that even mean? "You don't look like someone who would have tattoos." What??? What does that kind of person look like then? Is there a specific type of person who can get tattoo's and unless you're that kind of a person you can't get them?? If so, I need to become one of those people.

Tattoo's are something I feel so strongly about because I am a designer and I see the design elements that come along with creating a tattoo. I have just recently designed my fifth tattoo and I think that's one of my coolest accomplishments by far. I created something that I loved so much that I want it on my body forever. Yeah, that's wicked sick and I don't care who thinks otherwise. *flips hair*

I just ask those who are so against tattoos to rethink why they are. What is honestly so bad about them? If I have a couple of tattoos, does that negatively affect YOU? Nope. It's 2017, how about we stop judging others for creative expression and instead applaud them for being different than yourself?

Cover Image Credit: Pexels

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20 Small Tattoos With Big Meanings

Tattoos with meaning you can't deny.
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It's tough to find perfect tattoos with meaning.

You probably want something permanent on your body to mean something deeply, but how do you choose a tattoo that will still be significant in 5, 10, 15, or 50 years? Over time, tattoos have lost much of their stigma and many people consider them a form of art, but it's still possible to get a tattoo you regret.

So here are 20 tattoos you can't go wrong with. Each tattoo has its own unique meaning, but don't blame me if you still have to deal with questions that everyone with a tattoo is tired of hearing!

SEE RELATED: "Please Stop Asking What My Tattoos Mean"

1. A semi-colon indicates a pause in a sentence but does not end. Sometimes it seems like you may have stopped, but you choose to continue on.


2. "A smooth sea never made a skilled sailor."


3. Top symbol: unclosed delta symbol which represents open to change. Bottom symbol: strategy.


4. "There are nights when the wolves are silent and only the moon howls."


5. Viking symbol meaning "create your own reality."


6.Greek symbol of Inguz: where there's a will, there's a way.

7. Psalm 18:33 "He makes my feet like the feet of a deer; he causes me to stand on the heights."


8. 'Ohm' tattoo that represents 4 different states of consciousness and a world of illusion: waking (jagrat), dreaming (swapna), deep sleep (sushupti), transcendental state (turiya) and world of illusion (maya)


9. Alchemy: symbolizes copper, means love, balance, feminine beauty and artistic creativity.


10. The Greek word “Meraki" means to do something with soul, passion, love and creativity or to put yourself in to whatever you do.


11. Malin (Skövde, Sweden) – you have to face setbacks to be able to go forward.

12. Symbol meaning "thief" from the Hobbit. It was the rune Gandalf etched into Bilbo's door so the dwarves could find his house.


13. “Lux in tenebris" means “light in darkness."

14. Anchor Tattoo: symbolizing strength & stability, something (or someone) who holds you in place, and provides you the strength to hold on no matter how rough things get.

15."Ad Maiora" is translated literally as “Towards greater things." It is a formula of greeting used to wish more success in life, career or love.


16. A glyphs means “explore." It was meant as a reminder for me to never stop exploring.

17. "Aut inveniam viam aut faciam," meaning roughly, "Either I shall find a way, or I will make one."


18. Lotus Flower. It grows in muddy water, and it is this environment that gives forth the flower's first and most literal meaning: rising and blooming above the murk to achieve enlightenment.

19. The zen (or ensō) circle to me represents enlightenment, the universe & the strength we all have inside of us.

20. Two meanings. The moon affirms life. It looks as if it is constantly changing. Can reminds us of the inconsistency of life. It is also symbolizes the continuous circular nature of time and even karma.


SEE ALSO: Sorry That You're Offended, But I Won't Apologize For My Tattoos


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Get The Most Out of Your Trip To The Thrift Store

Tips from a self-proclaimed thrifting expert.

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If you know me, you know I love thrift stores. Sorting through racks of clothes, filling my basket up with dozens of different pieces, and walking away with a couple of different things is always so satisfying. Some people go for the vintage items, but I'm there to find the best over-sized t-shirt around and maybe yet another pair of shoes to add to the dozens I already own. Every time I go, there is a different selection of clothes for me too look at, so I end up going there all the time to see what's new! The bonus of thrifting? You can get a bunch of new styles without spending a bunch of money. To make the most out of your own trips to the thrift store, here are six rules you should follow.

Try on EVERYTHING that catches your eye

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We've all had those moments where we see a shirt we like at the mall, but then decide it might not fit, or it's not in our usual comfort zone, or it's too expensive, so we skip right over it. Not the case at thrift stores. If you like it and you think it might fit, try it out. I've gone into thrift stores and tried on fifteen or twenty things, some of which are just t-shirts but others that are interesting tops that I normally would never pick up. Sometimes those different clothes end up being my favorite, and since the prices are low it's the perfect way to test out a different style without dropping a lot of money on a shirt you might not wear more than once.

Bring a friend

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If you're going to a big store like Savers, there can be an overwhelming amount of racks to go through. With a friend, you can look for each other and end up with outfits you like that you might've not seen by yourself. Last time I went, my friends found a ton of UMD gear for me to try on! Going with a friend means double the finds.

Scope out different locations

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College gear is all over the place at thrift stores. Have you seen the price of a sweatshirt at your college bookstore? Check for something similar at the thrift store before you snag that $50 crewneck. If you're going to an instate school, there is a solid chance your local thrift stores will have gear for your school so you can show your spirit without breaking the bank. Some of my favorite college t-shirts are from thrift stores and they were under $5 each. For out of state schools, hit up the thrift stores in the towns close to it.

Read the label

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Where else are you going to get an authentic Longchamp purse and a Southern Marsh fuzzy pullover for $3 each? Expensive brand names at ridiculously low prices are one of the hidden gems of thrift stores. They are rare finds but totally make going to the store with it. Make sure to check the shoes, too!

Look for deals

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Many of the major chain thrift stores offer 50% off at the end of the month for one day only, if you're a rewards member. The rewards programs are usually free and sometimes include early access to sales or bonus coupons after shopping a certain number of times or spending enough money.

Give back

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Got clothing in great condition that doesn't fit anymore or isn't your style? Donate it and make room for your new clothes while doing something good at the same time! If you aren't bringing it to the thrift store, look into non-profits or organizations around you that will take what you don't wear anymore. Many places will take books, shoes, and furniture, so bring those on your next trip, too. Donating is a win for people and the planet!

Whether you hit up the thrift store all the time or you're just starting out, thrifting is the way to go if you want to revamp your wardrobe without spending a ton of money!

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