Sunday, July 25, 2010

lost heritage

My great-grandfather and great-grandmother.

My grandfather.

Friday, July 23, 2010


Superkid got a tattoo for his 18th birthday. He really wanted one, so I took him to a classy looking tattoo shop and chose a nice tribal for the area of his upper arm just above the biceps. The artist looked a bit doubtful (I imagined) so I assured him that the subject was 18.. well, minus a day. He actually told me then that he didn't care how old his canvasses are so long as they have permission from their parents, and a man came in and inspected the Kid and informed us that his own son got his first tattoo at 15, for christmas. Well the Superkid doesn't look a day under 15 plus his mother was there to give permission, so the artist went ahead measuring and fitting the design. He took good care to stick the piece clear of any birthmarks. That didn't quite work out, so I suggested he stay 2 mm within the lines of the design, and then all 3 marks would be carefully avoided. He agreed and went to work, telling me that on his own body he painted over the birthmarks regardless, but with clients they are not allowed. I got quite carried away with the creative vibe and started thinking about a design for myself. Halfway through the work the artist started talking about the necessity to cover with an ointment during the first two weeks of healing, in order to avoid the 'crust' from breaking. I suddenly realized with a shudder, that although my sister and my brother and both my exes and my exes' sister and brother have tattoos, we never talked about the healing, and I was gripped with a panic about what I may have brought upon my cub. But he did not seem too worried. He is proud as a peacock, and pretends it doesn't hurt at all. Not nearly as much as cutting fingernails. Even when the blood was dripping along his arm as we were leaving, he was grinning and beaming with pride, and the first thing he did when we got home was call his dad and tell him "mom bought me a tattoo for my birthday!". Everything I ever did wrong in 18 years of parenting has been erased today.

I hope he still feels the same tomorrow!