When my husband passed, I got a tattoo on the inside of my wrist. A small firework. He loved fireworks. We stopped to watch all fireworks. He passed away on July 4th. Fitting. I put it on my wrist so I could always see it. It’s easy to look at.
When Z passed, I got a big tattoo on my bicep. It peeks out of short sleeves and is all black and grey. The reaction from my mom when I came home with it was “That’s big.” It is. This situation(?) is big. If it were to be size proportional, the tattoo would have covered my entire body.
It’s a lot of pain. It’s a big tattoo. It could have been bigger.
My brother and sister drove in from Wyoming as soon as they could notify their employers and pack some items together. My sister drove 5 hours to my brother’s house and they were off on the 20 hour drive back to Michigan. Two days after they arrived we were in the garage of my mom and dad’s house and my brother announced/said “Amy, I want to buy you a tattoo.” That was Sunday. My family talked out the prospective tattoo design, my brother did 15-20 minutes of research on northern Michigan tattoo parlors and we were in the next day. I was in the chair when the eclipse happened.
Isabella had planned on driving to southern Illinois for the eclipse. She missed the eclipse and I was in a chair with ink being driven into my arm with needles to memorialize an event that I could have never imagined.
I had the tattoo for her visitation and her funeral the following two days.
I need to have her represented always and everywhere. All the places and things she should be a part of. She can’t and I’ve got this tattoo. A big, permanent sign on my body that is analogous to “I’ve lost someone forever and this is a representation of my pain and my life without them”.
My life has changed permanently. My arm has changed permanently.