Symbolic Tattoos

So I got a new tattoo-

Another one? Is what everyone reacted when I either showed them or told them. Well yes, another one. But I get these tattoos to mark a significant moment in my life, or a significant feeling I have. I can’t very well forget them if they’re on my body permanently, now can I?

I got my first tattoo the day after I turned 18, a large birdcage with a heart trapped inside. There’s other symbolism, and lyrics going along with it, but the main idea was that I felt trapped and needed to escape. And I did.


My second tattoo was about two weeks later when I was in New York for VKAM, and represents all the magic and memories I have in NY, and is a constant reminder that I want to return.


My third tattoo is a silhouette of my cat, which I got when I was in tech school. I hadn’t seen her in almost 5 months- which was the longest we’d ever been apart. She got me through one of the worst summers of my life, and never ceases to make me smile. I know cats don’t live forever, but I needed her with me forever.


My fourth tattoo is a Sylvia Plath quote that I got nearly spur of the moment. But it’s one of the dearest to my heart. “I desire the things that will destroy me in the end” over my ribs. Not only did it hurt like a bitch, a reminder that my pain could only be self inflicted- not caused by others. But a reminder that I can’t let people hurt me, and I can’t fall into the same traps I have over and over. Just sitting there and remembering its on me has kept me from doing some things I’m glad I didn’t.


And lastly, my new tattoo:


I love the symbolism I wove into it, and I absolutely love the work the artist did. The skeleton key itself has different symbolic meaning depending on who you’re asking or where you’re getting your information, but the basic meaning is unlocking something. Your future. love, heaven, success. Any of those are fair game. The infinity symbol, or course, means infinity. The eye also has several meanings, they’re the window to the soul, they represent watchers, visions, focusing in on a new direction. The two birds represent the two parts of my life – military, and civillian. Black birds are symbolic of potential, transformation, higher intelligence/thoughts/ideals, secrets, and mystery. There is of course the heart which symbolizes love. Then the two conjoined venus/female symbols represent strength, femininity, creativity, and inspiration.

So put it all together and you can get countless different meanings to this tattoo, all of which are accurate.

Tattoos can mean a lot of things to different people. They could be memorial, reminders, guides, symbolic, aesthetic, or just purely art. To me, they’re a way to mark yourself with your story, and they never allow you to stray from it. A reminder of who you are, who you were, and who you want to be.


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