Saturday, February 13, 2010

Memorial Tattoo......I Did It!!!

I got it.

After almost three years of saying I was thinking about it- I finally went out today and DID it.

A Heart Enfolded in Angel Wings with two tear-drops below for my Daddy and one for Clay, my son.

Now, for you girls who are thinking about it and wanted a first-timers opinion......I'll tell you all about the experience.....

First of all....EAT before you go.....and go to the Ladies room before too. A couple drinks wouldn't hurt either but NOT to be drunk.....just to "take the edge off", so to speak. Personally, If I had had a drink- I think I would have thrown up in the first five minutes, to be honest, so you may not wanna go that route, after all. Do not take aspirin, or any other oral dug to "take the edge off."

I got my tat on my shoulder blade, so I wore a Racer back top and bra, so I didn't even have to take anything off. Smart, me!! Always thinking(a la Peter Kay)...

The artist was running a bit behind schedule with the snow we had last night, so I had about an hour to sit out in the lobby and think long and hard about if I wanted to "Abort the Mission"....I mean "Change my Mind", and go home. I didn't. I was determined to go thru with it. After all, I told myself, it wasn't childbirth, and Dad and Clay certainly went through a lot more pain and suffering than I was getting ready to do. It was something I could go thru for them.

So, after a BUNCH of paperwork with signatures and ID involved, they came out and asked what I wanted, so I showed them the concept of what I wanted........ They disappeared for a few minutes, and then returned shortly with a similar drawing they had done before. I looked at it, liked the concept but didn't want a cookie cutter one, and after requesting the heart be larger so the wings wrap around it more and adding the tear-drops, they took it back for adjustments. The second time round- it was all good.

Paul and I went back to the room (Yes I asked Paul to come with me....I'm not above admitting I was a big baby and wanted him to "hold my hand"....literally if need be)and the Tat Artist- (Eddie Lamb of Monster Ink in Greenville SC)- asked me to sit on the chair with my back to him. He then placed the transfer and asked me to look and see if it was where I wanted it. It was, so he got started.

Now, I had been told the Tat gun sounds like the dreaded "Dentist Drill". .......Sort of. I think it was more a combination Dentist Drill and Battery Op Toothbrush. But when I heard the sound of it coming from behind me- I almost got up and left then. It wasn't really scary- just a bit freaky.

And then he put it on my skin. I had tensed up, waiting for excruciating pain, but that didn't happen. It kind of felt like a scratch from a thorn bush or something similar. Not bad at all......Well, I relaxed and then after about 2 minutes, the pain actually set in. It felt like he had a soldering iron drawing on my back. And after 10 minutes, I was pushing into the chair/table with my fingers and doing Lamaze breathing. To my credit- I didn't cry, or whine or whimper or anything. I just breathed deeply and concentrated on that. It helped that he stopped every 15 seconds or so to wipe the blood away which, luckily, I never saw any of. Those few seconds gave me a break and I was able to deal with the pain in short stretches much easier than if he had gone non-stop til it was done. About 10 minutes into it, I asked Paul for a sip of Coca-Cola when I started to feel a bit faint- but after that sip- I was fine for the rest of the outlining. When Eddie told me he was finished with the outline after about 30 minutes, I was so relieved I almost called a stop to it right then and there. But then he said he only had the coloring to do, so I thought- "Heck....I can finish this up EASY, then!" and went ahead with finishing it up.

Yeah Right, You Dumbass.

He started filling in the color and Honest to God- I broke a sweat. Even Lamaze breathing wasn't working. It felt like someone had lit a cigarette and was holding the tip to my back and grinding it out. I think I might have even squeaked a couple times while that was going on. But as he promised, a mere (excruciating)10 minutes or so later, he was indeed finished and it was over.

He rubbed it down with some anti-bacterial ointment, gave me some care instructions, and sent me on my merry way.

My opinion of the deal????
Just this:
The outline didn't hurt NEARLY as much as I thought it would, the coloring hurt way MORE than I thought IT would, and maybe it was just the location I had mine placed, but I wouldn't recommend getting a tattoo to someone who has a low pain threshold. If you can take a good bit of pain tho- no probs!!!!

(My baby sister, Nina, said if I(meaning ME) could get a tat- ANYBODY can...but that's HER opinion. LOL!!!)

Oh....and in case you're wondering, I SERIOUSLY DOUBT I'll be getting another tattoo in the future, except to add teardrops for passed loved ones.

......... But then again, I've learned to Never Say Never, too.


Evan 08 said...

That's some great art work. Make sure to keep it covered as it heals. Do NOT pick the scabs. Picking the scabs will cause you to lose color. Don't even try to scrub the soft and/or almost-loose scabs while you're in the shower.

Minimize sun exposure. Sun exposure causes the tat to blur sooner.

Sunny said...

THanks Evan. The instructions I was given say to take the bandage off after a couple hours and not to re-cover...but i'm gonna have to re-bandage cause it's still wet and is sticking to everything...sofa, clothes, my hair.:-P
Thanks for the heads up on the rest of it too- No worries about the sun exposure. Working nights doesn't give me much time in that area. I'm thinking that may be some of my depression problem too.

And Luckily- I won't be able to scratch or pick the's placed so I can't reach it from ANY angle!!!