This tattoo has very, very special meaning to me…for two reasons. I made the appointment weeks in advance…the artist had drawn it up…we had discussed colors…everything was set.
The basis behind the tattoo was to start my memory sleeve…something to represent the people who had impacted my life the most. This piece was for my ex-fiancée. (Note how little progress I have made on this memory sleeve…) The teddy bear with the flower was pretty self-explanatory…he was my teddy bear…my comfort, my cuddle buddy, my best friend. The flower is actually representative of all the time we spent fighting…flowers are the kiss and make up specialty…and even though we were never big on flowers, it seems we were always apologizing and trying to make things better. The words…As You Wish…well…the Princess Bride was our thing. To the point that 7 years later (including being in an amazing relationship, now marriage, for the last 4 years), I still have a hard time watching it. “Storybook Love” by Willy DeVille was supposed to be our wedding song.
The tattoo reminds me, every day, of the person that I was…someone who let people walk all over me, treat me like garbage, and retaliated. I have grown a lot from there. I know who I am…and I am unapologetic for who that person is.
As for the other meaning…well…The day of my appointment came, and I stroll into work, like any other day…only people kept stopping me and congratulating me. I was totally clueless. Apparently, CPO results had come out that morning…and my name was on the list. I had made chief. Which is a big deal for us lowly, enlisted sailors. So, I sneaked out of work early, got my tattoo done, had to go back to the ship to be congratulated by all the current CPOs…and probably had a half dozen people pat me on the arm…the hours old ink…while shaking my hand. It was a very long day.
Aside from the meaning, I have always held this tattoo in high regard. I love the colors in it…and I am huge stuffed animal collector, so the teddy bear holds a special place in my heart.