When I was younger, I used to live for the days when I would come home from school to find Kat Von D's "LA Ink" listed on the TV Guide. I loved Kat Von D's personal story, the LA lifestyle, the beautiful artwork and the amazing stories that each client told. I knew then, from a very young age, I loved tattoos and wanted not one, but several. Since then, I constantly think and draw up new tattoo ideas that have both meaning and are in good taste. Fast forward ten or so years and I not only have two amazing tattoos, but also my ears are stretched and I have my septum pierced.
Fortunately for me, tattoos have never been a taboo subject in my household, my dad has one and my mother has several. Their only caution regarding tattoos was to wait until you were sure of what you want and that you get it done well. Piercings, on the other hand, were only for normal ear piercings and tasteful, small studs in one nostril. I've always found stretched ears and septum piercings beautiful, despite what my family had to say, so naturally I wanted to defy societal and familial norms and do both.
I began stretching my ears without my mother's knowledge, and when she first saw them she wasn't the most pleased. When pierced my septum, I told her before hand and she really wasn't pleased. However, after seeing my passion for both, she eventually conceded and actually started to show support for my decisions. While my piercings haven't necessarily taught me anything about self-love, they have taught me about self-confidence. I realized most people judge other's on their first-impressions and I knew that there were going to be times that I was going to be judged. I learned to have thick skin and to not be concerned with what other's think of me. Realizing that my looks were for myself and not for others allowed me to embrace my own sense of style.
My tattoos, on the other hand, had a direct influence on my sense of positive self-image. Like any young person, I've struggled with body positivity, but my tattoos have helped me to accept and embrace my body. Both of my tattoos are on my upper body--One is a quote on the inside of my bicep, and my second one is a cluster of black and white roses on my shoulder. While ink can be completely personal, it is also a visible art. When I got mine, I obviously wanted people to see them so that meant that I had to be comfortable showing off my shoulders and arms. It's hard to dislike a part of your body when it's covered in beautiful artwork.
Our bodies are our own temples and it's sad to see any one spend any portion of their life hating the body that they have. For my, my piercings and tattoos help me with my body confidence.