In this day and age, we all either have, or know people who have Tattoos! Long gone are the days of my childhood where only bikers or sailors had them. :) Just like everyone from your grandma, down to newborn babies has their ears pierced now, when just a few generations ago, that used to be taboo as well. It is the culture we live in. And I for one happen to like tattoos. Of course we all know people who go overboard, just like with anything, you can get too many, the wrong kind, no meaning, or just plain bad ones!
But, just like with anything in life, when it's YOUR child who wants something, it causes you to look at it differently! Now, since my Husband and I, as well as our oldest Son, have Tattoos (my second son, will most likely NEVER have a single tattoo, it's just not him!) It was natural for my girls to talk about when they would be old enough, what Tattoos they might want to get. They have even designed a beautiful "Twin Sister" Tattoo they want to get together.
And since she was in Jr. High School, Erica has had an idea for a Tattoo that holds special meaning for her. She knew what she wanted and where she wanted it, and has been talking about this for going on 4 years now! In the State of Arizona any one can get a Tattoo at the age of 18. If you have a parent's permission, you can get one starting at 16. Erica has been begging us to let her get this Tattoo since before she was 16. We told her if she still wants it when she's 18, we'll talk about it then. Well, my girls will turn 18 at the beginning of October. The same age Kyle was when he got his!
Now as a Woman, and a Mother of Girls, I have always sung to my daughters; "Anything Boys can do, Girls can do better!" ;) Always wanting whats best for all my children, and that nothing (especially gender) would ever hold them back! Teaching them that they could be anything they wanted to be. The Bible tells us we are All created equal, and I believe that to be true. Feminism at it's finest! But, here I find myself wanting to say that even though you are the same age your brother was when he got his first Tattoo, you can't get one, because you are a Girl! Yes, I, who fight against double standards, had to fight inside myself to hold tight to my beliefs! How do I, who has taught my Daughters (and Son's for that matter) that Women are equal to Men, and deserve every opportunity afforded to men, that they can't do something, simply because they are my "Baby Girls"?! Yet, If I'm being totally Honest, that is exactly what I wanted to do! My little girls beautiful, perfect skin, would be permanently marked. Now, keep in mind that mine is, I have a little Star Tattooed on my ankle, that I love having. But this isn't me, it's my daughter.
So, knowing what it meant to her, even though it was hard, I made myself Practice what I Preach. Since she turns 18 soon, and it was just before our son's 18th Birthday that he got his, we told her the summer before her senior year was the soonest she could have it done. So the whole last month of school, all we heard was "Can we make the appointment?!" She's nothing if not persistent!
It's small, (about 4 inches long & 1 inch high, just above her wrist) If and when she's ever ready and chooses to, I will let her share the meaning behind her Tattoo and what it means to her. I will say she loves having it! And I am proud of her! And even a little bit proud of me, for—even when I didn't want to—fighting against Double Standards!